Takiroa Rock Art Site

Kurow-Duntroon Road, State Highway 83, Duntroon

  • Takiroa Rock Art Site, Duntroon. CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 Image courtesy of www.flickr.com.
    Copyright: Shellie Evans . Taken By: Shellie Evans – flyingkiwigirl. Date: 18/11/2019.
  • Takiroa Rock Art Site, Duntroon.
    Copyright: Heritage New Zealand.
  • Takiroa Rock Art Site, Duntroon.
    Copyright: Heritage New Zealand.

List Entry Information

List Entry Status Listed List Entry Type Historic Place Category 2 Public Access Able to Visit
List Number 5653 Date Entered 16th April 1985 Date of Effect 16th April 1985


City/District Council

Waitaki District


Canterbury Region

Legal description

SECT 116A, Otakaieke Settlement, DP 16208 (RT OT 77809), Otago Land District

Location description

3.5km north-west of Duntroon Township, along State Highway 83


This historic place is the main rock art shelter at what is known as the Takiroa Rock Art Site. The rock art is protected by metal caging on a portion of land vested in Te Runanga o Ngai Tahu. The earliest known European recordings of rock art in New Zealand were taken here by Walter Mantell, who sketched a group of drawings of the site in 1852. In 1896 the site was photographed by Augustus Hamilton, then director of the Otago Museum. These early recordings are extremely important as many of the figures shown by Mantell and Hamilton were later removed from the shelter by a visiting American scholar, Dr J. L. Elmore.

Assessment criteriaopen/close

Historical Significance or Value

The Takiroa Historic Area is of historical significance as being one of the earliest archaeological recordings in New Zealand, with observations of the area made by Walter Mantell in 1852, and Augustus Hamilton in 1896.


Additional informationopen/close

Construction Dates

Public NZAA Number


Completion Date

16th July 2008

Report Written By

Ellen Andersen

Other Information

Please note that entry on the New Zealand Heritage List/Rarangi Korero identifies only the heritage values of the property concerned, and should not be construed as advice on the state of the property, or as a comment of its soundness or safety, including in regard to earthquake risk, safety in the event of fire, or insanitary conditions.