Fishermans Bay

Whaling operations began here in 1911, managed and run by the Perano family.

In their peak years they built high-speed whale chasers and hunted with bomb lances, and they finished up with the big steam chaser Orca and a spotter aircraft.

By the early 1960s, however, both economics and public sentiment were running against whaling.

Four days before Christmas 1964, gunner Trevor Norton caught the last whale in New Zealand waters and brought to an end the working life of the country’s last big shore-whaling station.


You can still see an impressive wharf and the skeletal remains of the processing complex, complete with the slipway once used to haul up the whales for processing.

The Department of Conservation completed restoration work in 2010. 

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Dept. of Conservation historic site and visitor information centre