Main town of the southern Taranaki region, Hāwera is 70 km south-east of New Plymouth. In 1866 a government military base was established, and the town grew up around a blockhouse in the early 1870s. Dairy farming and processing have been a mainstay of Hāwera’s economy since the late 19th century. Petroleum finds – the Rimu/Kauri and Kupe fields – and their associated developments have also maintained the town’s economy. The town’s iconic concrete water tower was completed in 1914.

Meaning of place name
Originally Te Hāwera; te: the; hā: breath; wera: burnt, i.e. The breath of fire. The name recalls an attack by a taua of Ngāti Okahu against the Tītahi people at Whareroa. Surprising their foes at night, the taua killed all the Tītahi and razed their village.