Historic Reefton

A character gold mining town that was the first to have electric lighting.

View on map arrow_downward

Nicknamed Quartzopolis, Reefton was the centre of commerce that grew from the 1870s quartz mining, and today retains its authentic charm. From the original School of Mines building to the old banks, churches and Courthouse, the historic walk around its dozens of mining-themed buildings sets the scene to understand how successful it was in its time.

Renowned for being the first place in the southern hemisphere to have commercial power and electric lighting in 1888, a stop in Reefton includes a stay overnight. See the main street of Broadway lit by heritage-style lamps, and picture the global impact Walter Prince made as he first illuminated the mountains and minds of this heritage town.

The gateway in and out of the West Coast, Reefton is a destination in its own right. Ride or walk to the Bottled Lightning Power House, through the historically-rich Murray Creek tracks or overnight at Big River, and uncover how these seemingly untouched lands have seen it all.

Facilities and Information

  • directions_walk Walking involved
  • accessible Wheel chair accessibility
  • wc Toilet

Learn More



Reefton is the West Coast's only inland town, located at a central hub of State Highways with State Highway 69 running north through the town, connecting to State Highway 6, and with State Highway 7 passing through the southern end of Reefton.

It is approximately one hour's drive from Greymouth and two hour's drive from Hanmer Springs.

The Reefton Visitor Centre is located at
67 - 69 Broadway,
Reefton 7830

Other Tohu Whenua in West Coast