The Waimarie paddle steamer. © Visit Whanganui

Cruise the Whanganui River on a heritage vessel


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Take a leisurely trip up the Whanganui River on one of two historic boat cruises. 

Originally built in 1899, the Waimarie is New Zealand’s only coal-powered paddle steamer. 

Salvaged from the river bed twenty years ago and carefully restored, this historic river queen now takes up to 80 passengers on river outings. 

Experience the changing scenery alongside the river and learn about its fascinating history ashore at the Waimarie Riverboat Centre.  

Alternatively, climb aboard the equally historic MV Wairua. First launched in 1904 the MV Wairua carried passengers, mail and cargo over an 80km section of river which included over 100 rapids, for 34 years.

Similarly sunk, salvaged and saved, today the MV Wairua provides passengers with picnic trips, cruises and charters.

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