As famous as the black gold town itself is the memorial cemetery dedicated to the 34 people killed in the Kaitangata explosion of 1879 - one of New Zealand’s worst coal mining disasters. Just a short drive from Balclutha, Kaitangata or ‘Kai’ as it is known to locals, also features a coal box and plaque commemorating the town's discovery of coal cliffs in 1844, by Frederick Tuckett. With coal mining still at its heart, Kai is the start or finish of the Forgotten Coastal Highway and is well worth a stop to soak up the origins of the small town’s economy. Discover it all here, plus the town’s Top 10 things to do.

Sign up to our e-news

* indicates required