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A Manatū Taonga audio guide to the town of Mōkau and its whitebait industry. Check out the Ministry for Culture and Heritage's audio guide in the image carousel above.

The Mōkau River is famed as a source of whitebait -- the juvenile forms of native freshwater fish, often made into delicious fritters. In the 1830s it was the site of a trick by the migrating Ngāti Toa tribe, who lit many fires and dressed their women as chiefs to make their party appear larger and scare off pursuers.

Ngāti Toarangatira: migration from the north,

Whitebait and whitebaiting,

Favourite Kiwi fare,

Archival audio sourced from Radio New Zealand Sound Archives Sound files may not be reused without permission from Radio New Zealand Sound Archives (Reference number CDR931).

Roadside Stories are a series of audio guides to places of interest on major road trips in New Zealand. Each guide tells the story of an attraction along the way -- its people, its history, its cultural and natural significance. For more information about Roadside Stories visit

Map showing Mōkau, Whitebait Capital - Roadside Stories