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Porirua Harbour facts for kids

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Sunset, Porirua harbour entrance
Sunset over Porirua Inlet and Harbour entrance

Te Awarua-o-Porirua Harbour, commonly known as Porirua Harbour, is a natural inlet in the south-western coast of the North Island of New Zealand. The city of Porirua, one of the four cities in the Wellington conurbation, surrounds it. The city centre is to the south of the harbour. The harbour has an entrance only a few hundred metres in width, close to the suburb of Plimmerton. It opens up into two arms, Onepoto Arm to the south and Pauatahanui Arm to the north-east. Each arm is around three kilometres in length.

Part of the Porirua Inlet was reclaimed for a causeway carrying the North Island Main Trunk railway when the section between Porirua and Mana was straightened and double tracked. The new section of the Kapiti Line was opened on 7 November 1960. A new Paremata Railway Station and bridge over the entrance to the Pauatahanui Inlet were required.

The line no longer followed the curves of the shoreline bays north of Porirua, and three shallow lagoons on the land side of the new causeway were created. When State Highway 1 was re-aligned and straightened in the 1970s to run alongside the rail line, these lagoons were partially filled in. Aotea Lagoon was developed into a recreational area, albeit very polluted.

The name of the harbour was officially altered to Te Awarua-o-Porirua Harbour in August 2014.

Camborne panorama March 2010
Porirua Harbour viewed from Camborne. Mana Island is in the centre; Plimmerton to the right. Pauatahanui inlet to the left.

Pauatahanui Inlet

The Pauatahanui Inlet arm of the harbour extends eastward to the settlement of Pauatahanui. The wetland there where the Pauatahanui Stream enters the Pauatahanui Inlet, is the largest remaining estuarine wetland in the lower North Island, and the Pauatahanui Wildlife Reserve was established in the 1980s to protect the inlet's environment and to restore damaged areas.

Pauatahanui Inlet-20070919
The Pauatahanui arm of the Porirua Harbour with the entrance at the extreme left and Pauatahanui at the extreme right

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Porirua Harbour Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.