Hokitika in Maori, means “place of return”. It is a peaceful town on the way to Franz Josef Glacier. Hokitika is the home of the New Zealand jade, the green stone, or pounamu .
The town center has a clock tower as the center piece, a good place for photos. The huge jade factory behind the clock tower offers lots of crafts or jewelleries made of green jade and paua shells that is unique to New Zealand.
The town is small, so you can go around town on foot. You will see a few souvenir shops, arts and craft shop in town. It’s a good place to stop by to look around and grab a quick bite before driving further down the west coast.
A statue of jade manaia – Maori symbol of protection, outside the jade factory.
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