Oamaru New Zealand
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North Otago Museum. Photo Oliver Wahler
North Otago Museum. Photo Oliver Wahler
Heritage Building. Photo Visit Oamaru
Heritage Building. Photo Visit Oamaru
Steampunk HQ in Oamaru, Otago NZ
Steampunk HQ in Oamaru, Otago NZ
Penguin Crossing Sign. Photo Steve & Laura
Penguin Crossing Sign. Photo Steve & Laura
Victorian Building. Photo Visit Oamaru
Victorian Building. Photo Visit Oamaru
Oamaru Opera House. Photo Visit Oamaru
Oamaru Opera House. Photo Visit Oamaru
Oamaru Blue Penguin Colony. Stephen Jaquiery
Oamaru Blue Penguin Colony. Stephen Jaquiery
Harbour Street Oamaru. Photo Andy King
Harbour Street Oamaru. Photo Andy King

Oamaru Information

Oamaru is a coastal harbour town with the largest population for the district of North Otago in New Zealand. Oamaru was the centre of good fortune in the 19th century with the grain boom years leading to many Victorian style buildings being constructed. Not only is Oamaru one of New Zealandís best in architecture it is also home to one of the countries oldest public gardens.

The nature attraction Oamaru is famous for is the Blue Penguin Colony where visitors can see penguins nest under the cliffs of the harbour foreshore and in the old precinct of town. Penguins are everywhere, hence the roadside warning signs but the best viewing of the penguins is at the purpose built complex the Oamaru Blue Penguin Colony located at 2 Waterfront Road.

To discover the history the best place to see is the North Otago Museum in Thames Street. The museum contains a collection of artefacts and pictures displaying the natural and social history of the Waitaki District.

The Steampunk HQ is another hot attraction being a gallery unlike anything you have seen that houses curious machines and items that can only be described as being from another world. Many argue that the Steampunk HQ is one of the best and interesting things to do in Oamaru.

For those who enjoy theatres, the Oamaru Opera House is a gem and the home of entertainment. Located in one of Oamaruís century old buildings it holds unique events and performances all year round but best to check their website for dates of events it is sometimes used for venue hire and weddings.

For a day trip a little 40 kilometres outside of Oamaru, the Moeraki Boulders at Koekohe beach are worth the effort in visiting. Here lies a series of giant round boulders on the beach almost as if the Earth was trying to play its own game of ten tin bowling. The best time to see the boulders is during low tide when they are most visible.

For more holiday information on Oamaru you may also want to visit the official government website Visit Oamaru

Penguins at Oamaru Creek. Photo taken by Lorraine Adams
Penguins at Oamaru Creek. Photo taken by Lorraine Adams
Aerial view of Harbour Town, Oamaru. Photo courtesy of Visit Oamaru
Aerial view of Harbour Town, Oamaru. Photo courtesy of Visit Oamaru