Ōhinetahi (Governors Bay) means The Place of One Daughter - named for the only daughter of Manuhiri a son of Te Rakiwhakaputa of Ngāi Tahu. It is from this area that the whole of the harbour derives its name; Whakaraupo means Harbour of the Raupō Reed, and at the head of the harbour at Ōhinetahi there was once a swamp filled with a thick and high growth of raupō (flax).
Before the “first four ships” arrived in Lyttelton in December 1850 there were European settlers at the head of Governors Bay (now Teddington). Broader settlement began in the Governors Bay-Allandale area in about 1851. It is understood that Governors Bay owes its name to Governor, Sir George Grey. He was at Lyttelton to welcome the colonists on their arrival on the 16th December 1850, and the fact that his vessel was lying at anchor near the Bay suggests the origin of the name. According to early settlers the Bay was a very beautiful place, with its hills and gullies clothed with luxuriant native bush and giant tree ferns. As early as 1856 a bridle track was made as far as Dyer's Pass, and later a road was constructed as far as Gebbie's Flat. Most of this work was done by prison labour, and many contracts were paid for in land.