"Russell - First Capital of New Zealand" Russell by IcemanNZL
Russell Travel Guide: 19 reviews and 49 photos
Russell was the first capital of New Zealand and one of the first European settlements. The town is surrounded in history, from the police station on the waterfront and other buildings to the Christ Church the oldest surviving church in the country.
Known as the "Hell-hole of the Pacific" the town began as the native village of Kororareka, the first Europeans were ship deserters and exconvicts from New South Wales after whaling ships began stopping here for provisions from the early 1800s.
Felton Mathew, the country's first Surveyor-General arrived with Captain Hobson and said the Kororareka was 'a vile hole, full of impudent, half-drunken people'. Soon after his arrival and the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840. Captain Hobson purchase about 124 hectares near Russell as a site for the country's captial.
The township was named 'Russell' and for nine months was New Zealands captial, before being moved to Auckland in early 1841.
Russell is definately a place to visit while in the Bay of Islands. It is 3km across the harbour from Paihia and will cost about NZD$5.00 for the ferry.
Built in 1841 - 1842, Pompallier House is the only remaining building of the first Catholic Mission to Western Oceania.... more travel advice
Christ Church built in 1836 is the oldest surviving church in the country. As the only building of consequence in the... more travel advice
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