West Coast of North Island in New Zealand is home to one of the most beautiful city much closer to Mother Nature than any other. The name Whanganui comes from Maori culture where ‘Whanga’ refers to a harbour or a bay while ‘Nui’ points to large or big. The city’s actual location is in the opening of Whanganui River that passes through incredible Whanganui National Park flowing right from Mount Tongariro. As with many of the centers of New Zealand, it was declared as the city, however, in the year of 1989 during the reorganization of administration it was decided to run it under District Council. The district now has a total population of around 44,000. The airport of Whanganui was recently changed to Whanganui Airport in the year of 2016 from Wanganui Airport. To reach this city or district tourists will need to book tickets to Auckland which will connect to Whanganui via Air Chathams. The city is centered and surrounded with the mountains with main ones being Mount Taranaki, Mount Tongariro and Mount Ruapehu showcasing landscape filled with wild nature, golden beaches of West Coast and just perfect to connect with Mother Nature. Come to Whanganui to witness culture and artistic value of New Zealanders.
The city / district of Whanganui are situated on Southern Taranaki Bight which is quite close to the River of Whanganui. About 200 km towards North the city is covered with Wellington while Northern West area consist of Palmerston North about 75 km away near the junction of State Highway 3 and State Highway 4. As most of the area is flat land, the town is much towards the Northern West region of the River Whanganui. The river further consists of 4 bridges namely, Cobham Bridge, Dublin Street Bridge, Aramoho Railway Bridge (for both the pedestrians and the railway as well) and of course the City Bridge. On the end of suburbs surrounding this gorgeous city is: Gonville, Tawhero, St. Johns Hill, Aramoho, Castlecliff, Springvale, Otamatea, Wanganui East, Durie Hill, Putiki and Bastia hill. Out of all the mentioned suburbs, apart from Wanganui East, Durie Hill, Putiki and Bastia Hill are located on the Northern West bank of the river.
Season garnering maximum tourists into the city is not necessarily the only months a person should visit the place. Depending on the activities that the tourist plans to get involved many would prefer to visit in the non-peak season if they wish to have relaxing roaming around without worrying about the influx of people. Non-peak season also ensures the prices and booking of activities are cheap and affordable. However, peak season do have its perks as well.
Whanganui holds the climate of temperate weather wherein it garners about 2100 hours of sunny days throughout the year, while the rainfall is about 900 mm per annum. Winter season brings in light frosty weather that can make the air quite chilly. Heavy rainfall can lead to flooding of the river, which is what happened in the month of June, 2015 where due to this disaster about 100s of houses had to be evacuated.
The Whanganui Airport that was till now called Wanganui Airport, is constructed about 4 km from the center of the city towards the Southern direction of Whanganui River. The airport is constructed on the regional basis and that accord air networking and services for professional, private as well as tourism purposes. The unique value of this airport is that also transforms as flying school that accords future pilots a chance to achieve the dream of becoming the brilliant pilots. The airport was established in the year of 1930 and since then has effectively been the most important hub of air activity for the whole region of Whanganui. The airport also offers many needed facilities for the passengers some of which are as follows:
Whanganui airport is a regional airport and caters only for interconnecting flights from Auckland only. Earlier the airport also catered for Air New Zealand airline for cities Wellington and Taupo and was withdrawn as of 2013 September. The route towards and from Wellington was undertaken by Sounds Air. It was further terminated near about 15th May, 2015. The airport has just one terminal with 2 gates. The airline that operates and connects Whanganui with other cities and its destination place is mentioned below:
Dining options in New Zealand as whole is quite diverse with many world class restaurants being part of the country and its cities. Whanganui is not quite different from other cities and also garner much needed attention in terms of applaud worthy dining and cuisines with restaurants offering a relaxing place to eat and drink after a hectic day. Some of the restaurants have an edge above others which helps them to become top choices voted by the locals and tourists as well. Some of which are:
Cafe with the power to convert any drag old day to fun and sunny day is what Cafe Yellow House is all about. With ambience featuring in funky music, artistic talents of locals along with a delicacy named Buttermilk pancake, a breakfast here under the cherry blossom tree is just what one needs early in the morning. The added benefit of superb quality of friendly staff, sitting place on the terrace accompanied with beer or ale pie is just what you will wish for lunch.
Indian Cuisine’s specialty is that it is quite spicy in taste and keeping up with its taste, the name of the restaurant is definitely apt. The river city, keeping up the closeness with River Ganges, is home to many Indian restaurants; however, Spice Guru definitely takes the cake. Its classic ambience with the backdrop of colors black mixed with chocolate, super friendly staff and Indian flavored delicacies, makes the place one of its kind and obviously helps to win Top Choice position in Whanganui. Apart from numerous vegetarian options, the place hosts city’s best Chicken Tikka.
Whanganui is surrounded with mountains along with housing West Coast’s best beach, has much to offer tourists in terms of sight-seeing and adventure activities as any other populated cities out there. From surfing on the sea and hiking as well as camping out in the woods to relaxing on the beach and taking in the museums and galleries that the place has to offer, this is a dream come true destination for every family out there as the place has all kinds of activities that will suit the family individually and together. Apart from this tours and excursions are also planned to offer people a little more than what they expected in this city. Some of the sight-sees are:
Having the honor of being called New Zealand’s best museum on Natural History, this place is cool, classic and elegant. Most of the exhibits have influence from the Maori culture and also include the ferocious mere, which are actually greenstone clubs, as well as the carving of Te Mata o Houroa war canoe. The top quality of wildlife installation depicting colonial influence along with kids’ friendly drawer opening options can make for interesting and relaxing way of exploring the museum.
This sophisticated art gallery structured to bring in the classical culture and art form of ancient into new limelight has always stayed on top of places to visit list of tourist. Due to earthquake proofing work being done currently, it has shifted its location to Taupo Quay from the Queens Park it was constructed in. As the area currently is quite small as compared to what the gallery had on the hill, the collection of pieces is quite limited. People can check out Whanganui’s i-SITE located right across the road for more sight-seeing.
|Wheel Chair Availability||Yes|
|Prepaid Booth (TAXI)||Yes|
|Terminal Interchanging Facility||No|
|Domestic Flights Connectivity||Yes|
|One Day Shelter||No|
|Taxi Cost||$3.00/ km (NZ)|
|Apartments Rent||Starting from $150 / week|
|Beer||$ 3.25/ 0.5l (NZ)|
|Mineral Water||$ 2.00 / 1.5l (NZ)|