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Whangarei Falls forest walk

Whangarei District, with Northland’s only city, has an urban population of approximately 57,700 with the balance of the district’s almost 90,000 people living in coastal and rural communities.

The First People - Tangata Whenua

Everyone in New Zealand originally arrived after a journey seeking something better. Tangata whenua came from the Pacificas and Maori settlements were flourishing in the 1200s. By the 1900s, Europeans were settling and now, people arrive from every part of the world.

Kids having fun at Otuihau - Whangarei Falls
Kids having fun at Otuihau - Whangarei Falls

Where our people come from 

About 70% of the population of Whangarei is of European descent. 25% of the Whangarei community identify themselves as Maori from the tribes or Iwi of; Ngāti Wai, Ngapuhi, Ngati Whatua, Ngare Raumati, Ngāi Tāhuhu, Te Parawhau, Patuharakeke, Ngāti Kahu, Ngāti Manuhiri and Te Ākitai. The balance of the population is made up of people from other world cultures including Pasifika, Asia, Latin America, African and Latin America.

The median age of the population is 38.4 years with 14.9% aged over 65 years (compared with the 12.3% nationally) and 22.8% residents under 15 years.

Our communities

With its rich mix of peoples, its history and geography, Whangarei locals have developed a strong sense of identity and live in a mix of urban, rural and coastal communities. Often, local schools will provide the heart and focus of each community.

Whangarei district is made up of the following geographic areas, each with its own unique history and charm: