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Whanganui

Travel Guide
Whanganui

This charming city has long been known for its abundance of cultural and historical delights as well as its gorgeous riverside location.

Fertile soils, a temperate climate and plenty of fresh water made Wanganui one of New Zealand’s most successful Māori settlements during the 1800s. Nowadays, Wanganui is best known for its great museums, riverboat cruises and pleasant surrounding countryside.

Discover the area’s indigenous past with a visit to the Whanganui Regional Museum. Here you can see the spectacular Te Mata o Hoturoa War Canoe. This was constructed from a single tree and is covered with exquisite carvings. View more historical objects and learn about the cultures of the Māori tribes. You will also find a range of interactive displays that take a look at some of the North Island’s indigenous animals and plants.

If you like the examples of Māori art in the museum, head to Sarjeant Gallery where you can see fascinating tribal artworks. You will also see a range of local landscapes by the artists Domenico Piola, William Etty and Lelio Orsi, among others.

From here, head to the waterfront Chronicle Glass Studio. Watch as professional glass blowers shape intricate vases, or try it out for yourself during a 1-day course. Create a colorful paperweight to take home as a souvenir.

A short stroll across the park will take you to the Whanganui Riverboat Centre. Here, several displays explore the history of the river, but the highlight is the restored boat, the Waimarie. Known for being the last of the paddle steamboats used in Wanganui, the Waimarie sank in 1952 and lay submerged for 41 years. After a painstaking restoration, this historic vessel is once again taking passengers on gentle cruises along the tranquil river.

Wanganui has a range of accommodation options to meet different requirements. A number of restaurants and hotels in the town serve hearty local cuisine.

Fly into Wanganui’s local airport or drive from Auckland in around 5 hours and Wellington within 3 hours. It’s worth staying a few days in Wanganui to explore some of the pretty surrounding countryside and take in its rich cultural heritage.

Astral Motel
Astral Motel
3 out of 5
46 Somme Parade, Whanganui
The price is NZ$100 per night from 8 Aug. to 8 Aug.
Located in the heart of Whanganui, this motel is within 1 mile (2 km) of Moutoa Gardens, Sarjeant Gallery and Queens Park. Whanganui Museum and Whanganui Riverboat ...
3.9/5Good! (218 reviews)
"The staff and manager were friendly and accommodating, overall it was a very pleasant experience."

Reviewed on 26 Jun. 2021

Astral Motel
Kingsgate Hotel The Avenue Wanganui
Kingsgate Hotel The Avenue Wanganui
3 out of 5
379 Victoria Avenue, Whanganui
The price is NZ$129 per night from 9 Aug. to 9 Aug.
Located in the heart of Whanganui, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Watt Fountain, Sarjeant Gallery and Whanganui Museum. Durie Hill Elevator and Whanganui ...
3.8/5Good! (294 reviews)
"Great property to stay at, the attached restaurant is great."

Reviewed on 20 Jul. 2021

Kingsgate Hotel The Avenue Wanganui
Aotea Motor Lodge
Aotea Motor Lodge
4.5 out of 5
390 Victoria Avenue, Whanganui
The price is NZ$192 per night from 6 Aug. to 6 Aug.
Located in the heart of Whanganui, this luxury aparthotel is within 1 mile (2 km) of Watt Fountain, Sarjeant Gallery and Queens Park. Whanganui Museum and Durie ...
4.5/5Wonderful! (299 reviews)
"I would most definitely come back my stay was amazing snd the reception lady was so lovely.room was amazing!!"

Reviewed on 13 May 2021

Aotea Motor Lodge
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.
Whanganui Seaside Holiday Park
Whanganui Seaside Holiday Park
2 out of 5
1a Rangiora Street, Whanganui
The price is NZ$73 per night from 12 Aug. to 12 Aug.
Situated near the beach, this campsite is 0.2 mi (0.4 km) from Castlecliff Beach, and within 6 mi (10 km) of Virginia Lake and Whanganui Museum. Durie Hill Elevator ...
4.2/5Very Good! (77 reviews)
"We liked the fact that it was peaceful and quiet. The bach we had was tidy. We would like to come and have a holiday here with the kids for a week or so."

Reviewed on 10 Jul. 2021

Whanganui Seaside Holiday Park
Aotea Motor Lodge
Aotea Motor Lodge
4.5 out of 5
390 Victoria Avenue, Whanganui
The price is NZ$192 per night from 6 Aug. to 6 Aug.
Located in the heart of Whanganui, this luxury aparthotel is within 1 mile (2 km) of Watt Fountain, Sarjeant Gallery and Queens Park. Whanganui Museum and Durie ...
4.5/5Wonderful! (299 reviews)
"I would most definitely come back my stay was amazing snd the reception lady was so lovely.room was amazing!!"

Reviewed on 13 May 2021

Aotea Motor Lodge
Anndion Lodge Motel and Function Centre
Anndion Lodge Motel and Function Centre
3.5 out of 5
143 Anzac Parade, Whanganui
The price is NZ$90 per night from 20 Aug. to 20 Aug.
Situated on the riverwalk, this aparthotel is within 2 miles (3 km) of Sarjeant Gallery, Moutoa Gardens and Queens Park. Whanganui Museum and Whanganui Riverboat ...
4.1/5Very Good! (99 reviews)
"Found my experience most enjoyable"

Reviewed on 25 Jul. 2021

Anndion Lodge Motel and Function Centre
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Top activities in Whanganui