Papakura is located on the shores of the Pahurehure Inlet and is approximately 32 kms south of the Auckland CBD.
Papakura is a Māori word believed to have originated from papa, meaning earth or flat (abbreviation of Papatuanuku) and kura meaning red, reflecting the rich, fertile soil upon which the community was founded.
Papakura once served a significant military population, but now only the SAS special forces are based at Papakura. The nearby houses were originally Army Homes, but are now in private hands.
Some notable sports facilities include an indoor-outdoor swimming pool, an international-quality athletics track, a sports stadium, and venues for rugby, netball, cricket, golf, tennis, badminton, soccer, and many other sports. The council also operates a theatre and there are a number of skate parks.
Clevedon is located on the Wairoa River five kilometres from its estuary and outflow into the Tamaki Strait, an arm of the Hauraki Gulf. It is 14 kilometres from the centre of the suburb of Manukau, which lies to the northwest. To the south of Clevedon rise the rugged hills of the Hunua Ranges. Several popular beaches are located on the coast close to Clevedon, including Duder's Beach and Kawakawa Bay. Between these two beaches lies the Duder Regional Park.
Clevedon was named for Clevedon, England, in 1866. It was previously known as Te Wairoa (Māori: 'the Long River'). There were formerly many schools located in Clevedon (the Wairoa district) but only one remains, Clevedon School.