Chatto Creek

This tavern's historic atmosphere takes you back to the late 1800s

The Chatto Creek Tavern was built in 1886 to offer refreshment and food to a township of 800; mostly rabbiters and Otago Central Rail Trail construction workers and their families. The rabbiters worked on the early sheep stations using gin traps and cyanide to try and eradicate the rabbits from the area. Rabbits unfortunately continue to be a major pest. The Chatto Creek Tavern’s mud-brick and stone construction has stood the test of time to now provide a welcome rest-stop for Rail Trailers. Next door to the tavern and dating back to 1892 is NZ’s smallest post office where a letter or postcard can still be mailed.     




Population: 11

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Chatto Creek Tavern

Our menu reflects our commitment to use fresh ingredients, our two chefs and staff are able to provide you with an enjoyable dining experience.  Heart warming Pinots and chilled whites from the Central Otago region, (alongside others from outside Central!) available to compliment your meal. Ph: 03 447 3710.

Original Chatto Creek Post Office

New Zealand’s smallest post office, The Chatto Creek Post Office (1892) was originally a tent insulated with newspapers. Restored by the small local community, it was relocated from near the Chatto Creek Station site to alongside the Chatto Creek Tavern. 

Chatto Creek Gold Dredge

You can view the remains of the Chatto Creek Gold Dredge that worked in the Manuherikia River between 1898 and 1909 from the trail entrance to Catto Creek Tavern.

Historical Road Bridge

There is a historical road bridge only 50m from the tavern in Chatto Creek which looks like it is made from a giant bike chain. This is a great photo opportunity.

Fishing close to Chatto Creek

If fishing is your thing, the Manuherikia River is 3 km along the trail in the direction of Alexandra, with fishing access from the Manuherikia Rail Bridge No.2.

The Rail Trail Guide Book

The single most important resource when travelling the Central Otago Rail Trail

A beautifully crafted book with amazing photography by Peter Andrews showing Central Otago as it truly is, one of the most rugged, extreme and beautiful locations on the planet. Stunning scenery, amazing and important historical and current information, detailed maps, lists of accommodation, frequently asked questions, where to eat, how far between towns, etc. It’s all in here.

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