Travel website reviews suggest Oamaru is New Zealand's 'most welcoming' town

Apparently the south is friendlier than the north.
Apparently the south is friendlier than the north. Photo credit: Newshub/Getty

Congratulations to the 13,700 residents of Oamaru: the small Otago town has been identified as the friendliest in New Zealand, according to research by

The accommodation website scoured through thousands of reviews and visitor rewards for its study, which also revealed which regions are deemed to be the most welcoming. Canterbury topped that list.

Southern charm is seemingly alive and well with Oamaru, Hokitika and Invercargill taking out the top three spots based on the share of properties receiving review awards on the website.'s top ten most welcoming towns in NZ:

  1. Oamaru
  2. Hokitika
  3. Invercargill
  4. Cambridge
  5. Picton
  6. Lake Tekapo
  7.  Kerikeri
  8. Palmerston North
  9. Paihia
  10. Twizel

Todd Lacey, from NZ, said the country's award achievements highlight the excellent hospitality Kiwis are known for. 

"We've been fortunate enough to enjoy domestic travel over the last year in a turbulent year for tourism and it's important to celebrate the amazing experiences our partners are able to provide their customers," Lacey said. 

To be included, towns had to have at least 50 eligible accommodation options available to book on the website.