About the Awakino Hotel

The Awakino Hotel was established in 1904 as a boarding house and tea house. It was built right alongside the Awakino river as a place to stop and rest, usually while moving cattle. If the river was flooded or something postponed their travels, there was always a place to rest.

Then in 1957 the extension was built, which was the bar!

The reason for this was, interestingly enough, prohibition in the Waikato region. The Waikato territory coincidentally begins across the river.


Since then the Awakino has been a hub of activity, hosting all sorts of events. From speed sheers, hunting competitions, weddings, fishing competitions and many bands rocking the roof off.

Some of the more interesting events include the wheelbarrow derby where teams of 2 would race from Mokau to Awakino (over 5km!) doing the human wheelbarrow. As well as this, there was also the Awakino beach race, where competitors raced horses and placed bets on the beach. Lastly, Awakino has also been home to the Awakino rat hunt, which is pretty self-explanatory!

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Photo by Will Knight​

Mokau Fishing Club

The Mokau fishing club use the Awakino Hotel as their club rooms, where they host their monthly BBQs over the summer months and have their competition prize givings. With such a bountiful ocean nearby, there's no wonder the local club has well over 100 members. Awakino Hotel is the place to come and weigh their fish, and with a pole and winch, we can weigh the big one that didn't get away!

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Photo by Will Knight​

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Photo by Will Knight​

Tainui Pig Hunting Club

'Tainui' is the Maori name of the land around Mokau. This land is full of pigs which are the main target for the hunting club and its members. With monthly BBQs over winter and yearly competitions, the Awakino Hotel caters and sponsors the club. Even the children get involved, weighing in possums, rabbits and even pigs. The countryside truly hides some beats, with the biggest pig on record weighing a massive 357 pounds (161kg).