Timaru is a bolshie city that has that Sydney style. Oamaru is a Melbourne equivalent. Oamaru appears planned and Timaru would seem to have just happened. Melbourne has wide streets and boulevards; Sydney narrow and congested and thatís Timaru. Timaruians would love this comparison as they are noisier and happy residents.
The problem with Timaru is everything is spread out and nothing flows, and poor signage makes for difficulty, without a visit to the info office, to locate the key attractions or sites.
Timaru also has a waterfront that has recently been upgraded and is a great meeting and social area and Timaru is one of the major cargo ports of the South Island, with a number of light manufacturing plants associated with the export and import trade.
Timaru also has a suburban shopping centre that has pulled a lot of business from the cbd area, but Timaru is far enough away from Christchurch not to have business pulling away from the bigger centre.
European settlement began with the construction of a whaling station in 1839 by the Weller brothers of Otago at Patiti Point, close to the present town centre. A supply ship, the Caroline provided the name for a local bay.
Timaru will require up to three days to enjoy and to make the most of the tourist offers.