Taupō has been named New Zealand's Most Beautiful Large Town.

Keep New Zealand Beautiful (KNZB) announced the winners of this year's Beautiful Awards at a gala dinner in Auckland Friday night.

Taupō was up against runner up Timaru.

The judges were particularly impressed with Taupo's innovative approach to sustainability, with the Taupō District Council doing an unprecedented amount of work to engage the community and encourage them to do the right thing; from local marae to school groups, and supporting community groups such as Greening Taupō, Tidy Taupō and many more.


In addition to Taupō taking the Most Beautiful Large Town Award, Dunedin was crowned the Most Beautiful City, against strong competitor Hutt City, while Raglan was named New Zealand's Most Beautiful Small Town, against runner up Waihi.

Most Beautiful Town and City finalists were decided after a visit from celebrity judges, renowned New Zealand stencil artist Flox (Hayley King), NZ House & Garden Editor Sally Duggan, along with a representative from KNZB.

Raglan also took out the Supreme Award, in what the judges described as an unprecedented commitment and effort regarding their community beautification programme.

Raglan will receive a customised community mural, designed and painted by Flox in their town.

Twelve other awards were also presented on the night, celebrating environmental excellence among businesses, schools, individuals and places throughout New Zealand. Heather Saunderson, chief executive of Keep New Zealand Beautiful, says "The Beautiful Awards celebrate the incredible inroads into sustainability, environmental excellence and community beautification that New Zealand is making as a nation. From the efforts of councils in the Most Beautiful Towns and Cities Awards, to the contributions made by everyday kiwis in our Community Group and Individual Awards; every entrant in the Beautiful Awards deserves to be celebrated for their contribution towards making New Zealand a safer, cleaner and more beautiful place for current and subsequent generations."