Come and enjoy one of Te Anau's favourite attractions. The Trout Observatory has been in operation for over 40 years and is still one of the best things to do in Te Anau.Learn More
Located near the centre of Te Anau is one of Te Anau's longest standing visitor attractions. The Te Anau Trout Observatory is home to a variety of well looked after Rainbow and Brown Trout, plus a couple of NZ Native Koura. With an entry fee of just $2 per person it is one of the most affordable tourist attractions in New Zealand.
"Hands down the best trout observatory I have ever visited. Would highly recommend."
The Trout Observatory was constructed back in the early 1970's by 2 Te Anau locals, Lance Shaw and Les Cooper. Their creation over 40 years ago has seen thousands of happy visitors through its gates. Previous to it becoming a Trout Observatory it was run by Ward Beer as a trout hatchery that supplied trout to most Southland waters.
The Brown Trout is a European Native that was introduced to NZ in the late 1860's. The Brown Trout adapted to their new environment in NZ well and are now NZ's most common and widespread species of trout. Brown Trout are found mainly in freshwater, although they are known to spend time in salt water environments.
Koura, also known as the freshwater crayfish, live in freshwater environments such as streams, lakes or ponds. They can be found nestled amongst the stony or muddy bottoms and can be difficult to find during the day as they are well camouflaged with their dark green, mottled colouring. They are most active at night.
Rainbow Trout were introduced into New Zealand from North America in 1883. Although they were more difficult to establish than Brown Trout, they are now found throughout New Zealand and are a sought after species for game fisherman. The Rainbow Trout are typically 2-3kgs in weight and 500-600mm in length.
To get to the Trout Observatory from the Te Anau Town Centre you can take a 10 minute walk along the beautiful shores of Lake Te Anau. If you are lucky enough to be staying at one of the motels on the Lakefront the walk is even shorter. The Te Anau Trout Observatory is located at 2A Lakefront Drive, Te Anau. This is directly across the road from the Fiordland National Park Visitor Centre (Department of Conservation Headquarters).