Home to many of Auckland’s spectacular regional parks and beaches, the Franklin Local Board area’s rural setting offers something for everyone.
Just a short drive from Auckland, you can enjoy fishing, swimming, hiking, bird watching, diving and much more. You can even stay the weekend – with camping and baches available at many regional parks.
Well-known for its agriculture, Franklin is also a popular destination for motor sports, horse breeding and the famous Clevedon farmers’ market.
“Right from the East Coast to the West Coast, we’re truly spoilt having such wonderful natural resources on our doorstep,” says Franklin Local Board Chair Andy Baker.
“We also have a great range of attractions that cater for all tastes, including the V8 Supercars at Pukekohe Park Raceway, the A&P Shows in Clevedon and Pukekohe, and the Glenbrook Vintage Railway.”
In the past few years, the local board has completed a number of projects in the area, including the redevelopment of the Clevedon District Centre and the handover of rural halls to the community to manage in Beachlands and Maraetai.
Construction of a multi-sport facility at Bledisloe Park is underway and the Pukekohe skate park is in the design stage.
Transport to and from Franklin will also get a whole lot easier with a proposed new Pukekohe bus-train interchange.
The Franklin area includes: Awhitu Peninsula, Karaka, Ardmore, Clevedon, Whitford, Kawakawa Bay and Orere Point, as well as the townships of Pukekohe, Waiuku and Beachlands.
Franklin population: 65,322 people or 5 per cent of Aucklanders (2013 census).
Best kept secret: St Bride’s Church in Mauku was built at the time of the Waikato War in the 1860s. It is a fortified church and was the last hope of safety for settlers caught up in the conflict - there is also a pioneer cemetery at the church. The Manukau Heads Lighthouse on the Awhitu Peninsula is one of few visitor-accessible lighthouses in New Zealand. Inside are displays telling the story of the HMS Orpheus, which ran aground in 1863 as it approached Manukau Harbour, tragically killing 189 people. From the balcony at the top, there are beautiful views of the harbour.
Great things to do in Franklin:
• Take a stroll around the Pukekohe Farmers Market on Saturdays and the Clevedon Farmers Market on Sundays.
• Take the 5km walkway and cycleway along the coast between Beachlands and Maraetai.
• Visit the oldest continuously licenced pub – the Kentish Hotel in Waiuku.
• The yearly Pukekohe and Clevedon Agricultural & Pastural shows draw crowds from across the North Island.
• Take a dip at one of the many beaches on the eastern and western coast.
• Enjoy a family outing to the Hunua Falls with picnic areas and a variety of walking tracks.
• Visit one of the other five regional parks in the area.