A Manatū Taonga audio guide to Wairākei's geothermal power station. Check out the Ministry for Culture and Heritage's audio guide in the image carousel above.
When completed in 1963, Wairākei was one of just two geothermal power stations in the world. However, it has adversely affected the surrounding thermal area -- tourist attractions such as the famous Wairākei geyser and Champagne Pool have come to a halt, and the land is sinking. A nearby prawn farm takes advantage of heat from the power station's waste water.
Geyser Valley, 1950s,
Wairākei to Ōhakuri,
Opening Wairākei power station,
Archival audio: Archives New Zealand -- Te Rua Mahara o te Kāwanatanga, http://www.archives.govt.nz/ People of the Waikato. National Film Unit, 1956.
Roadside Stories are a series of audio guides to places of interest on major road trips in New Zealand. Each guide tells the story of an attraction along the way -- its people, its history, its cultural and natural significance. For more information about Roadside Stories visit http://www.mch.govt.nz/roadside/