Reefton Heritage Trail

10 April 2012
Reefton 1976

Reefton, located inland from the west coast of New Zealand's South Island, was founded in about 1870, when gold miners started tracing sources of alluvial gold into the hills in the area. The town grew rapidly, with hotels, banks, newspapers, shops, businesses and even a stock exchange rooms. The central part of Reefton has many historic buildings and sites of other historic buildings, some long gone and more than a few destroyed by fire.

The town, seen here in an aerial photograph from 1976, retains a lot of its early character and has many features to explore. You can explore the town here on this web site, or walk around and locate points of interest yourself.

Apart from walking around the central part of Reefton, there are walks such as:

1. From the top of Broadway up to the water reservoirs, along the terrace with great views of the town, and back in a loop via Bridge Street;

2. Down Broadway to the town bridge, along Rosstown Road to the old power house site, across the swingbridge and back into town;

3. Extending from the swingbridge, about 1.2 kilometres along the river bank to the old water race tunnel and back;

4. From Rosstown, up the zig zag track to the lookout, with the option of the long walk along the forestry road to Soldiers Road, and then back into Reefton.

There are also many opportunties for longer walks, tramps and overnight stays in mountain huts; mountainbiking; four wheel driving; fishing; hunting; and of course there's the skate park and many sporting facilities in town.

Enjoy your stay in Reefton!!!


Reefton, seen here in its very earliest days.

very early Reefton
  • place Masonic Lodge

  • place Monteith's Brewery

  • place Wilson’s Hotel (1871)

  • place Princess Theatre