The Whakatane District is located in the Eastern Bay of Plenty, 90km east of Tauranga.
With some of the best shopping, beaches, local beachside eateries, and amount of sun hours in the country, the Whakatane District is rich in history and culture.
This part of New Zealand has been populated for centuries, with Māori pā (Māori fortified village) sites in the area dating back to the first Polynesian settlements, estimated to have been around 1200 CE. According to Māori tradition, Toi-te-huatahi, later known as Toi-kai-rakau, landed at Whakatāne about 1150 CE in search of his grandson Whatonga. Failing to find Whatonga, he settled in the district and built a pa on the highest point of the headland (now called Whakatāne Heads), overlooking the present town.