Mining in Waihi has a history that spans three centuries. Gold was discovered in the 1800s and mined underground in the first half of the 1900s. The last 24 years of the 1900s focused on exploration, development and mining of the Martha Mine open pit. In the 2000s the open pit continued to operate while the Favona underground mine was developed – at the end of 2004 – and the Trio underground mine began construction activities in 2010. However, mining operations today are very different to the historic underground mining days.