Taiaroa Head is a headland at the tip of the Otago Peninsula offering visitors spectacular views of the surrounding unique landscape overlooking the mouth of the Otago Harbour. It is home to a historic lighthouse, built in 1864, and a colony of over 100 northern royal albatrosses.
The headland is named after Te Matenga Taiaroa, a 19th-century Māori chief. Pukekura, a significant Māori pā was located on the headland, established back in 1650s and still occupied by Māori in the 1840s.
The area has an abundance of unique wildlife including dusky dolphins, orcas and migratory large whales including humpbacks. Their sightings in the areas are on the increase and Taiaroa Head is one of the best vantage points along the Otago coast.
Ruins of former coastal defences are located nearby, notably a restored Armstrong Disappearing Gun emplacement built in 1886 following a scare that New Zealand might be invaded by the Russians.
Otago Peninsula and Taiaroa Head is a unique and very special place. It is a place that every visitor to Dunedin should see. – David Attenborough, BBC
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