At the heart of Whanganui National Park lies the Whanganui River, this gentle river flows for 170km through one of the largest tracts of untouched lowland podocarp forests in the North Island. Pipiriki and Whakahoro are the main gateways into the park.
From Whakahoro you can experience the Whanganui Journey, one of New Zealand’s Great Walks and the only Great Walk that isn’t actually a walk. Instead for this 3 day journey you canoe or kayak 87km along New Zealand’s longest navigable river, steeped in Maori and European history with deep gorges and bush-clad valleys. Guided trips are available and due to the gentle gradient, this is a perfect canoe or kayak trip for beginners. You can break up your paddling experience with a short 40 minute walk to the Bridge to Nowhere, an abandoned settlement which has gradually been reclaimed by the surrounding forest.
Further along, Tieke Kainga offers accommodation at a local marae, providing a fantastic and authentic insight into local cultures and traditions. There are many short walks in Whanganui National Park, the Department of Conservation website has detailed information on activities in the area as well as the wildlife you might encounter. For those short on time, the Bridge to Nowhere Jet Boat Tours offer an exhilarating way to experience the river, your guide will share their rich knowledge of the flora and fauna of the park and the history behind the abandoned settlement.
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Our team of New Zealand specialists can help you create the perfect touring itinerary. Whether you want to explore the South Island on a self drive holiday or the North Island on an escorted coach tour package we can design or recommend the best options. We have a huge range of accommodation ideas to suit everyone and our first hand experience of destinations and activities means that we can give the best, most up to date honest advice.
Discover New Zealand is part of the New Zealand Fine Touring Group of companies. It specialises in self drive, seat in coach and escorted coach touring holidays across New Zealand's North & South Islands. We have hundreds of tour ideas listed to inspire you or give you an indication of what is possible to achieve on your New Zealand adventure. Whether it is a luxury fully escorted coach tour or a self driven off the beaten track adventure, we have something suitable for everyone. Our wide range of tour lengths and tour prices give you options and are tailor made so we can build the itinerary to suit your interests and needs.
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