In August 1840, two days after the Comte de Paris had anchored in Paka Ariki Bay, the settlers sent out by the Nanto-Bordelaise Company were put ashore. They landed on 19 August at a spot where, though there is now a seawall, it is still possible to envisage the ship’s boats grounding on the bouldery beach and the settlers scrambling ashore.
The French settlers spent their first nights ashore in large tents erected just up from the beach. In 1940, a stone was placed on the site to mark the 100th anniversary of the landing. A second stone was unveiled by the Prime Minister of France, Michel Rocard, in April 1991. Between the two stones is a flagpole from which the French flag usually flies.
Nearby, a bench commemorates Etienne Francois and Justine Rose Le Lievre, two of the original French settlers, who married in 1851. Some of their many descendants erected the bench in May 1990 to mark a 150th Le Lievre family reunion. A second bench commemorates another Comte de Paris settler, Joseph Libeau. This bench was erected to mark a Libeau family reunion held in August 1990.