The first European contact here was by James Cook and his men, in 1769. The Maori inhabited the area beginning around the early 19th Century. A settlement began here, started by a single Scottish colonist, in 1839, after which more settlers - mainly his family members - gradually trickled in. In 1842, the Maori, who had been peaceful to the settlers thus far, attacked the settlement violently, and the town was abandoned until 1855, when kauri gum was discovered in the area. The town soon grew prosperous off also importing coal, limestone, cement, and bricks.
Today, Whangarei is known for its northernmost location, waterways, harbor, waterfalls, natural scenery, and arts and culture.
People Born in Whangarei
Whangarei in People's Lives
Liam Neeson: I traveled here in 1983 to film scenes of the movie The Bounty.