Napier is a thriving seaside town, with a population of 58 100. Home to the Port of Napier and known worldwide as the Art Deco Capital, every year more than 20,000 people a year opt to take a guided walk through its streets.
Supported by a Mediterranean climate this popular year-round destination boasts a vibrant cafe culture. For the shopper there are high street and boutique stores to browse in, as well as antique shops, art galleries, and studios of potters, wood turners and craftsman.
Napier was rebuilt in the early 1930s, following an earthquake which measured 7.8 on the Richter scale. The new buildings reflected the styles of the times - Stripped Classical, Spanish Mission, and Art Deco – as well as incorporating some unique Maori motifs. Tours are conducted rain or shine every day (except Christmas Day) and no bookings are necessary.
Art Deco aficionados also opt to visit in February during the annual festival weekend, or in July for the Deco Decanted weekend celebration. For more information see the Art Deco Trust.
Marine Parade is one of Napier’s most picturesque highlights, with many attractions such as the National Aquarium of New Zealand, MTG Hawke's Bay, Ocean Spa Complex, Par 2 Mini Golf, The Napier Sound Shell, Pania of the Reef statue, Tom Parker fountain and the Millennium Arch, to name a few.
If you need help choosing what to do, why not visit the Napier i-SITE Visitor Information Centre by the sound shell, beside the Sea. It is open from 9am-5pm daily. Phone: 0800 VISIT US.
A Napier landmark is Bluff Hill, which is home for many Napier residents and provides views of the town beaches of Perfume Point and Westshore, past the newly upgraded airport and out towards Whirinaki. Bluff Hill also overlooks the Port of Napier, one of New Zealand’s busiest ports and a stopping point for many cruise liners.
Napier’s bustling suburbs of Taradale and Ahuriri are visitor destinations in their own right and well worth a day trip.