Explore Te Awa o Whanganui. © Ocean Belcher

Take a journey on the Whanganui River

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The river – Te Awa o Whanganui – forms the heart and history of Whanganui. 

As the longest navigable river in New Zealand, the Whanganui River is popular for aquatic adventures of all kinds, whether you’re travelling by canoe, kayak, paddle steamer or high speed jet boat.

Beginning on the slopes of Mount Tongariro, the Whanganui River flows to Taumarunui and on through the Whanganui National Park and the city before joining the sea at Castlecliff. 

Choose from a sedate cruise past city suburbs, a multi-day journey paddling in the National Park, a quick jet boat blast to discover the intriguing Bridge to Nowhere or stay ashore as you drive or bike the scenic Whanganui River Road.  

A site of huge cultural and historical importance for Māori, the Whanganui River is also the only river in the world to be granted the same legal status as a person. 

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Whanganui Region Where to stay in

4.5 /5
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Riverside Motel Visit website

Relax in an attractive garden setting on the banks of the Whanganui River where you can watch the historic paddle steamer Waimarie sail the lower reaches. . . . More . . . 

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Cooks Gardens Motor Lodge Visit website

Superior accommodation in the River City. Quiet courtyard setting, close to main shopping street. All our spacious studios, 1 and 2-bedroom units have tinted hush . . . More . . . 

4.8 /5
Raceway Motel

We have room to park trucks. Lovely salt water pool. Spa pool. Home baking. Enjoy a warm welcome and an affordable stay in our comfortable complex. . . . More . . . 

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151 on London Motel & Conference Centre Visit website

151 on London is an impressive complex boasting 26 luxury air conditioned suites built with your comfort in mind. It is situated on SH3, at . . . More . . .