Western Southland’s townships were built on the pioneering industries of whaling and sealing, sawmilling, gold mining and coal mining. In fact, Riverton (Aparima) was one of the earliest European settlements in New Zealand and a site of many cross-cultural encounters. Two heritage trails and a range of museums, including Tuatapere’s Bushman’s Museum and the Te Hikoi Southern Journey Heritage Museum, provide engaging insights into the unique and dramatic history of Māori and European settlement in the area.
Explore Heritage In Western Southland
Family Friendly Museum
172 Palmerston Street, Riverton
Authentic life size displays, adventurous characters and engaging stories reveal how early Maori and Europeans adapted to survive on nature's edge.
6 Ferry Road, Tuatapere
Small accommodation with a quirky little art and handcraft gallery.
Arts & Crafts
54 Colac Bay Road, Colac Bay
This weaving studio in Colac Bay offers a variety of handwoven clothing items made from wool, mohair, alpaca and more. Weaving tuition is also available.
25 Lionel Street, Riverton
A local gallery of beautiful unique works of art focused of Southland landscapes.
77 Main Street, Tuatapere
This gallery displays original artwork by established New Zealand Artists and emerging artists.