Waipukurau and Waipawa both had very different starts to colonial life and it was in 1860 that two station owners, H.R. Russell and F.S Abbot founded the farming centres of Waipawa and Waipukurau as two private towns. A number of smaller townships are scattered around the region which is predominantly farming land and the region runs from the base of the 200-million-year-old Ruahine Ranges all the way to the Pacific Ocean on the east coast.
Waipukurau is the biggest town and the agricultural hub of Central Hawke’s Bay. With a vibrant main street there’s a great selection of local shops and cafes and is a perfect base to start day trips and get out and explore the area. It is also home to Te Huinga Wai – Knowledge and Learning Hub which provides a space that offers shared working spaces, digital services and programmes, bookable meeting rooms with free wi-fi and video conference accessibility for our community.
Waipawa is just a five-minute drive or a twenty-minute cycle northeast of Waipukurau and is home to some of Hawke’s Bays best rainbow and brown trout fishing spots. Dotted along the main street are several boutique shops and cafes, and you’ll also find the Central Hawke’s Bay Museum which offers a nostalgic glimpse of life back in the day with lots of hands-on experiences for young and old. It is also the hub of The Limestone Loop – a driving route through Otane, Waipawa and Tikokino where you can choose the pace and cater for your tastes with offerings of wine, shopping, culture, cafes and history.