Waitara – “Where the River Meets the Sea” is just that. The Waitara River flows through the town and we have a population of around 6,800 people or 2,500 residential properties. The Waitara River must be one of the most used rivers in New Zealand. The upper reaches provide brown trout and downstream there are flounder. Whitebait find their way into the river only to be caught in white-baiting season, by the keen white-baiters who brave the weather to get their share of this much sought after delicacy. Every day there are surf-casters catching fish off the stone wall, at the mouth of the river or the banks of the river. Summer sees the river used by water skiers and jet skiers above the town bridge and when the conditions are right jet boats meander their way up through the rapids to the upper reaches of the river. They also have the odd competition day on the river. Below the bridge is where the rowing club practice and host regattas; as does the yachting club and there is also a canoe/kayak club who practice their paddling and also have fun in the rapids up the river. There is also a group of women who paddle their hearts out in the Dragon Boat, and’ compete in competitions around the Country. The beach is busy with the Waitara Bar Board Riders catching the waves on the bar and it is also well renowned as the place for kite surfers and windsurfers who play in the surf at the well-known Spot X. They come from all over New Zealand to enjoy their sport. There is a new launching ramp with a floating jetty that is well used by the local boaties and it is proving to be a popular place for New Plymouth boaties to launch as well. There can be up to 100 trailers in the car park and surrounding areas at times. There are also fishing Competitions held and a special day is put aside for “Take a Kid Fishing” which is put on by the Waitara Surfcasting Club. Marine Park also is used for Carnivals, which involves a lot of events with water sports and there is a skateboard ramp and a children’s Playground. There is also a Campground on the seafront. The beach and the river are popular with swimmers and young people are often seen jumping off the town bridge to cool off.
town is made up of a cross section of people.
Many choose to retire to the town as it has one of the best climates in
Taranaki and it is close to New Plymouth. Gardeners find the climate great for
all sorts of gardening and a lot of tropical plants do well in the town. Because it is so close to New Plymouth, people
commute to work from here. Sport is also
well catered for in the town with well-developed sportsgrounds for Soccer,
League, Cricket, Netball, Bowls, Squash, Tennis and Gymnastics. There are 2 golf courses and a town swimming
pool. The elderly are also well catered for with many Clubs and Organisations
who cater for their needs e.g. Age Concern who meet every Friday afternoon and
provide entertainment, the over 60’s Club and Old Folks Association. There are Craft Clubs, scrabble etc. and two Rest Homes in the town. So as a holiday destination or a place to live we are a great little town.
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