How big is South Taranaki?

South Taranaki is 3,575 sq km’s in area, with a population of 26,484 (2006 Census). It lies on the west coast of the North Island of New Zealand and is part of the greater Taranaki Region. Taranaki has a land area of 723,610 hectares (3% of New Zealand's area) and a population of 104,000 people (2006 Census).

What is the main town?

The main town in South Taranaki is Hawera. A bustling, modern town with a population of around 9,000 Hawera is the administrative and geographical centre of the district.

What is the shopping like?

Hawera is the main shopping centre in South Taranaki with a range of high quality shops, modern cafes/restaurants and big box retail. Nearby Eltham is also a popular shopping destination with its eclectic range of vintage and retro stores.

What is the average cost of a house/rental?

The average median sale price for residential properties in the Hawera/Normanby area was $169,000 (July 2010).
The rental market in South Taranaki is quite diverse, offering numerous types of accommodation, including short and long term leases, townhouses, units and family homes.
Some real estate agents can assist you to find suitable rental accommodation. A fee equivalent to one week's rent is the standard charge.

What is the lifestyle like?

South Taranaki has a lifestyle second to none. Whether you want to escape the rat race for a holiday, attend one of the region’s exciting festivals, go surfing, fishing, tramping, skiing, shopping or anything in between, South Taranaki offers it all.  Its stunning natural environment, rugged coastline and grown up urban attitude mean that once here, everything is on your doorstep – you can be on the mountain in the morning, the beach in the afternoon and dining out in any one of our top class cafes or restaurants in the evening. For more information click here.

Where is the closest airport?

Taranaki has its own domestic airport 10km from the city centre of New Plymouth, a 45 minute drive from Hawera. The airport is serviced by regular flights from domestic carrier Air New Zealand (http://www.airnewzealand.co.nz)

International airports are located in nearby Rotorua, Auckland and Wellington.

What are the schools like?

South Taranaki offers a range of excellent facilities, where children are taught by highly qualified, dedicated staff. Our schools provide a safe, friendly and positive environment where students are actively encouraged to reach their full potential. For more information click here.

What is the main language spoken?

The main language of New Zealand is English. Mãori is the second official language of the country and is also spoken quite widely. The New Zealand accent has been linked to the British and Australian accents.

What is the weather like?

The warm weather starts as early as September, though summer does not officially begin until 1 Dec. Temperatures regularly reach the mid-twenties in summer  and rarely fall below 10 in the winter. Taranaki is blessed with high rainfall and high sunshine hours which is why the region is so green, lush and fertile with the volcanic soils. For more information click here.

What sorts of facilities do you have?

South Taranaki has an abundance of high quality facilities which districts of its size would usually struggle to have. From a state of the art multipurpose sports, events and recreation complex, to modern cinema, libraries, aquatic centres etc South Taranaki has it all. Click here for more information.

What types of jobs are available?

Agriculture, in particular dairy farming, is the backbone of Taranaki's economy. The temperate climate of Taranaki combined with its very fertile land makes the region ideal for agricultural based activities.

Taranaki is also the centre of New Zealand's oil and gas exploration and petrochemical industry. Major exploration activities are underway throughout the region. Downstream activities include processing natural gas to synthetic fuel, as well as the production of resins and urea. Exports are shipped out of Port Taranaki.

Taranaki has a skilled, export oriented manufacturing base. The local industry includes food manufacturing (e.g. dairy products, speciality dough, meat and poultry) as well as timber, chemicals and metal based.

Taranaki's skilled engineering businesses offer specialist services, which assist with the construction and maintenance of the region's dairy and petrochemical facilities.

Leading edge technology underpins Taranaki's competitive advantages in niche markets associated with timber and speciality dough.

Therefore jobs in demand fall into engineering, manufaturing, dairy, oil and gas, plus the usual health and educational opportunities within the region.

What can I expect of employment conditions, culture and benefits?

New Zealand provides good working environments for both government and private sectors.

The amount of pay you can receive for a job varies depending on where you are employed in the country, your employment agreement, your experience and qualifications and your employer's employment policies.

As a guideline (provided by www.careers.govt.nz), an electrician can expect to earn between NZ$35,000-$60,000 per year for a standard 40 hour week. Financial accountants usually earn between $35,000-$100,000 per annum and very senior financial accountants may earn over NZ$140,000 per year before tax.

New Zealand's occupational and safety laws require all employers to provide a safe working environment. Likewise, employees must follow all safety procedures. Sourced from: http://www.nz-immigration.co.nz/employment/work-conditions.html

Benefits such as health or life insurance, pension, subsidised memberships and the like are not standard and must be negotiated.

 How far away is Auckland/Wellington? 

Hawera to Auckland is 416 km, approximately a 5 and a half hour trip by car, or a 40 minute flight from Auckland to NewPlymouth.

Hawera to Wellington is 283 km, approximately a 3 and a half to 4 hour trip by car.