General Information

The Buller District is on the Northern West coast of the South Island, New Zealand. The Buller District is characterised by the magnificence of its scenery, unique to this part of the country. Westport is the service centre of the Buller District. Westport Harbour, adjacent to the town, is at the mouth of the Buller River opening into the Tasman Sea . It offers a sheltered haven to fishing vessels and cruise boats.
Physically, the region is dominated by its mountains, lakes, rivers, forests and rugged coastline.
Rainfall is high, but with a large annual quota of sunshine too, Buller has one of the mildest climates in New Zealand.
Punakaiki, Buller, South Island, New Zealand 3
Punakaiki, Buller, South Island, New Zealand 3
Pancake Rocks.
Attractions and Activities

Leave the city life behind and bask in the magnificent scenery, the clean pollution free air, litter free streets and enter one of the most clean and natural environments of New Zealand.

Descend into an underground labyrinth, investigate a limestone cavern system, challenge the white waters by raft or kayak, surge the rivers by jetboat, explore the bush lands by mountain bike. Raft through the surf on dolphin encounter, tube raft through underworld tunnels and glow worm grottos, grab a surfboard and ride the big West Coast waves.

Whatever your holiday pleasure in adventure activities or peaceful and enduring attractions, you will feel the friendly comforting atmosphere that Buller has to offer.
Kohaihai, Buller, South Island, New Zealand 1
Kohaihai, Buller, South Island, New Zealand 1
Kohaihai River and Heaphy Track in Kahurangi National Park.
Cape Foulwind Seal Colony, Buller
Cape Foulwind Seal Colony, Buller, New Zealand

The early European settlers of the Buller District were a hardy lot of people with determination, grit and a strong commitment to the community spirit, with this they were able to endure the solitude and ruggedness of the West Coast in the South Island and make a home for themselves and their families.

With the discovery of gold around 1864 the population began to thrive from around 250 to 26,000 within a period of three years. During the next decade, coal was discovered within the Buller District, and with this, coal mining became a stable commodity for the district. By 1895 the township of Denniston became the largest coal producing mine for the country and today is still an economical source for Buller.

The town of Reefton became the first township in the Southern Hemisphere to provide public electricity. The generation system was later replaced in 1948 with an improved system.


Shopping is a great vacation pastime, and, you'll find special gifts and souvenirs to remember your visit. Crafts and apparel reflecting the heritage, natural attributes and lifestyle of the region are very sought after for their unique flair and design.

Westport, Buller, South Island, New Zealand
The township of Westport has a fantastic backdrop of the jagged peaks and rainforest of the Paparoa Range.

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