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Opunake

(4.5/5 based on 20 reviews for 2 attractions)
Things to do: beaches, nightlife
Opunake is a small town on the southwest coast of Taranaki in New Zealand's North Island. It is located 45 kilometres southwest of New Plymouth. Rahotu is 16 km to the northwest. Manaia is 29 km to the southeast. State Highway 45 passes through the town.The town has a population of Opunake is the westernmost town in the North Island with a population of at least 1,000.The town was settled in the 1880s. It was intended to be a major port but, other than a jetty constructed in 1891, little else was completed.Opunake is the centre for the local dairy industry, and is also a popular tourist spot, having one of Taranaki's finest beaches. The beach is composed of volcanic blacksand and there are large rock pools to be found on the north-west end of the beach at low tide.Currently (January 2008) an artificial surfing reef is under construction in the northwestern corner of the beach.The Opunake and surrounding community has a South Taranaki District Council LibraryPlus, which provides full library and Council related services. Services include being able to register your dog, pay your rates or inquire about obtaining a building permit. Other services include a monthly Friends of the Library coffee morning. The LibraryPlus also has numerous APN computers, offering free internet and Skype to the public.A statue of Peter Snell was unveiled on Saturday 19 May 2007 to celebrate the fame of this son of Opunake. Other notable people born in Opunake include former All Black captain Graham Mourie, prop Carl Hayman and former New Zealand Prime Minister Jim Bolger.
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