Discover Whanganui with the 'Tourist Loop'
Whanganui has it all - rugged beaches, pristine parks, culture, Victorian buildings, cafes and gardens. Follow the tourist loop to experience the very best on offer in Whanganui.
Whanganui's Tourist Loop makes it easy to explore some of the fun and interesting places that Whanganui has to offer. Everything can be seen in about 4 – 6 hours (excluding paddle steamer), but ideally you need a full day or two to fit it all in at a relaxing pace – followed by a soothing session in our spa to wind down!
You will also find that your TOP 10 Membership Card will get you discounts at a number of the local attractions. (For more information about TOP 10 Membership, click here).
For directions to these destinations, a map of this tourist loop is available in reception and on display in the park. You can also pick up brochures and comprehensive information on all the tourist attractions available in reception and in the communal building.
1. Start at Whanganui River TOP 10 Holiday Park
2. Drive up Papaiti Road to Mosquito Point before continuing to the new cycle bridge that crosses the river to Upokongaro. Cross here to visit Behind the Door on 4 Cafe.
3. Travel 1.8 km to the View Point for lovely views of the river and city.
4. A short drive away is Matipo Park & Westmere Walkway.There are great views of Wanganui, birdlife and pine forests from here.
Follow Brunswick Road and enjoy the scenic drive to Bushy Park
. Enjoy walks, the forest reserve, and the historic homestead
6. After short drive away is Black Sand Studio & Gallery where you will see work of around 40 artists from around the country.
7. Heading back on SH3 you will find Windermere Berry Farm for fresh strawberries, raspberries and fruit wines.
8. From Windermere, travel along SH3. You will find Westmere Reserve on the right. Enjoy a short or long walk and bird viewing.
9. Carry on along Rapanui Road for 5 km to find Bason Botanic Gardens on the right.
10. Travel along Rapanui Road to Kai Iwi Beach, an attractive swimming beach with an amazing children’s playground with zip wire and wood-burning BBQ’s for a family picnic.
11. Be sweet for the rest of your holiday with Canaan Honey House. Buy from their selection or take your own container to fill up.
12. Go to Virginia Lake scenic reserve, where you will also find the Whanganui Winter Gardens and massive Open Flight Aviary. Relax at Funky Duck Café, or let the children play at the adjacent playground.
Heading back towards the city, drive down Victoria Avenue which is recognized as one of NZ’s most attractive main streets.
13. Queen's Park accommodates the Wanganui Regional Museum
Visit Whanganui Riverboat Musuem,
the booking office for the PS Waimarie Paddle Steamer
, NZ’s only coal-fired paddle steamer.
A short walk from here is the Tram Shed, home to the No.12 Tram Mable. Take a ride on Mable for a $2 donation on Sundays.
15. The Sarjeant Art Gallery has temporarily moved to Taupo Quay, just a short walk from the Paddle Steamer. Visit Moutoa Gardens across the road from the Riverboat Centre.
16. Across the river are the Durie Hill Tunnel & Elevator and the Memorial Tower on the summit of Durie Hill.
17. Find Paloma Gardens, beautifully landscaped gardens with plants and trees from all over the world as well as many fantastic sculptures. There is also a swimming pond.
18. Visit Kowhai Park and Riverland Family Park where the kids will have hours of fun. Crazy Golf and Go-Karts are at Riverlands Family Park
19. Travel along Kaimatira Road to enjoy a 15-25 minute bush walk at Gordon's Forest Reserve.
20. Head back to Whanganui River TOP 10 Holiday Park and book yourself into the spa!