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Te Anau
Te Anau and Murchison Mountains.jpg
Coordinates: 45°25′S 167°43′E / 45.417°S 167.717°E / -45.417; 167.717Coordinates: 45°25′S 167°43′E / 45.417°S 167.717°E / -45.417; 167.717
Country New Zealand
Region Southland
Territorial authority Southland District
 • Total 5.57 km2 (2.15 sq mi)
 (June 2020)
 • Total 2,940
 • Density 527.8/km2 (1,367/sq mi)
Area code(s) 03

Te Anau is a town in the Southland region of the South Island of New Zealand. In Maori, Te-Anau means the Place of the Swirling Waters. It is on the eastern shore of Lake Te Anau in Fiordland. Te Anau is 155 kilometres north of Invercargill and 171 kilometres to the southwest of Queenstown (via state highway 6). Manapouri lies 21 kilometres to the south. Te Anau lies at the southern end of the Milford Road, (State Highway 94) 117 kilometres to the south of Milford Sound / Piopiotahi.



The population of Te Anau was 1642 people in 1971 and this climbed to 2384 people in 1976, 2610 people in 1981 before declining to 1785 people in 1996. The 2013 census recorded the town's population as 1,911. This had increased to 2538 people in the 2018 census. The median age was 39.4 years. There were 1038 occupied private dwellings, 573 unoccupied private dwellings and a further 54 occupied non private dwellings in Te Anau.


Te Anau

Tourism and farming are the predominant economic activities in the area. Lying as it does at the borders of Fiordland National Park, it is the gateway to a wilderness area famed for tramping and spectacular scenery. Many tourists come to Te Anau to visit the famous nearby fiords Milford Sound / Piopiotahi and Doubtful Sound / Patea. The town is also used as a base for those undertaking the Milford Track and the Kepler Track, the latter being a 4-day loop from Te Anau. Visitors to the area also partake in activities such as kayaking, cycling, jet boat riding, fishing and hunting, farm tours and seaplane/helicopter sightseeing. In 2014, readers of New Zealand's Wilderness magazine voted Te Anau as the best location in New Zealand for tramping (hiking) opportunities. The town has a wide range of accommodation, with over 4,000 beds available in summer.


Te Anau has two schools; Fiordland College and Te Anau Primary school.


Te Anau is served by Te Anau Airport which is 15 km south of the town on State Highway 95. It was proposed in 2016 to develop the airport in order to enable commercial flights in from Christchurch in order to boost tourism.

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