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Oamaru

Oamaru a pleasant coastal town not far south of the Waitaki River, developed a port in the shelter of Cape Wybrow. Oamaru is often known as the whitestone city. Many of the town's buildings were built out of whitestone, which was also exported for some fine buildings elsewhere in New Zealand. The area around the old port has been renovated, and restored old buildings have been put to new uses, This makes for an interesting area for visitors to explore.

Oamaru - Peter Pan statue in Oamaru Gardens
Oamaru - Peter Pan statue in Oamaru Gardens - Credit- Peter Hunt

Not far south of the town is the Totara Estate Memorial where the buildings of the first freezing works in New Zealand have been preserved. The export of frozen meat brought considerable prosperity to Otago long regarded as a good area for sheep farming.

Close to Oamaru are also areas of market gardening with stalls on State Highway 1 proving handy for shopping for passing drivers. Oamaru has three well-known secondary schools catering for local students and boarders - Waitaki Boys' High School, Waitaki Girls' High School,and St Kevin's College.

The famous New Zealand novelist, Janet Frame, attended Waitaki Girls' High and there is a Janet Frame Trail visiting locations used in her books. A grandstand built south east of the town allows visitors to watch Blue Penguins come ashore around dusk.

Oamaru is a good centre for travelling in the North Otago area. Many people go from there up the Waitaki Valley to visit the power stations at Benmore, Aviemore, and Waitaki and their storage lakes which are used for recreation.

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