The Greenwood Guide to New Zealand
Wanganui and Manawatu, New Zealand

Nature and Activities in Wanganui and Manawatu, New Zealand

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Mangaweka Adventure Company

Mangaweka

Adventure activities

A friendly company that offers rafting & kayaking trips from 1 hour to 4 days on the Rangitikei River. They specialise in family-fun trips that include children as young as 4. I like their promise to 'match your boat to your mood'. There is also a camping ground set aside the river as well as an onsite cafe with internet access.

  • Prices: Day-trips start at $55 for adults and $40 for children.
  • Contact: State Highway 1, Managaweka
  • Tel: 06-382-5744, 0800-655-747 (freephone within NZ)
  • Email: info@mangaweka.co.nz
  • Web: www.mangaweka.co.nz
  • Updated: 31/01/2008

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Ruahine Adventure Horsetreks

Mangaweka

Adventure activities

Alan and Liz Rennie run friendly, very personalized horse treks through magnificent beech forest and across their working farm - watch out for the Highland cattle though. Non-riders can go fishing or on eco-walks through the Meersbrooke Reserve. It’s best to book in advance.

Ruahine Adventure Horsetreks
  • Prices: Trips on offer from one-hour long rides to six-day treks. Prices vary accordingly.
  • Contact: RD7, Meersbrooke Farm, Managaweka
  • Tel: 06-382-5555
  • Email: meersbrooke@xnet.co.nz
  • Web: www.ruahineadventurehorsetreks.co.nz
  • Updated: 31/01/2008

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River Valley

Taihape

Adventure activities

River Valley stands out in my memory as the best white-water rafting experience of my life. Surrounded by 12,000 acres of New Zealand bush on the Rangitikei River, the world-class grade 5 rafting is not the only thing on offer in this stunning and isolated spot. Inflatable kayaking, scenic eco-rafting (for the more serene), horse trekking, guided natural and cultural interpretive bush walks, fly-fishing and even a bit of golf make an appearance. As they say, “like any New Zealand adventure lodge you will find us at the end of the road”... and it’s a picturesque road to boot.

River Valley
  • Prices: Half-day Grade 5 white-water rafting $145 pp; full-day scenic eco-rafting, adult $145; 2-hr horse trek $85 pp; half-day horse trek $145; full-day horse trek $189.
  • Contact: Mangahoata Rd, Pukeokahu, Taihape
  • Tel: 06-388-1444
  • Fax: 06-388-1859
  • Email: thelodge@rivervalley.co.nz
  • Web: www.rivervalley.co.nz
  • Updated: 31/01/2008

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Cross Hills Gardens and Nursery

Kimbolton

Botany & gardens

Ladies will hanker after a straw hat and floaty dress to breeze around the vibrant park-like gardens of Cross Hills. The virgin bush of 1886 has been developed with 7 hectares of rhododendrons and azaleas (over 2,000 varieties!) and still features many old trees and original stone walls. Take a full or magic mini-tour to find out more or enjoy a spot of afternoon tea (in true British country garden style) in the on-site café.

  • Prices: Entry fee peak season (October - November) $10 per adult; off-peak season $5 per adult - children Free. Tours conducted by Rodney or Scott $40 per group. Magic mini-tours $5 per person (minimum 3 people). Booking needed.
  • Contact: RD54, Kimbolton
  • Tel: 06-328-5797
  • Fax: 06-328-5773
  • Email: info@crosshills.co.nz
  • Web: www.crosshills.co.nz
  • Updated: 31/01/2008

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The Wool Company

Taihape

Nature & wildlife

Good old-fashioned service and exceptional quality NZ knitwear are both on hand in this relaxed country store. Treat yourself to a New Zealand-made merino jersey and super-soft lingerie and merino possum knitwear, socks and accessories or fabulous ready to knit yarn. Perfect for present-buying dilemmas. If you can’t decide while you're there you can check out the online shop and catalogue.

The Wool Company
  • Contact: Torea Street, Utiku, South Taihape
  • Tel: 06-388-0400
  • Fax: 06-388-1873
  • Email: sales@thewoolcompany.com
  • Web: www.thewoolcompany.com
  • Updated: 31/01/2008

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Hikoi ki Paerau, Aorangi Experiences

Mangaweka

Scenic flights

What, you may ask, is a heli-hike? Well this is New Zealand, where people jump on board a ‘copter for a spot of fishing, so why not do the same with hiking? The day starts with the ‘scenic’ (an understatement, I’m told) flight taking you up to a sub-alpine environment. You then hike through black beech and stands of magnificent podocarp forest. Groups never number more than 10, and the local guides are hugely knowledgeable on everything from indigenous flora to local Maori legend.

  • Prices: Can you provide us with some basic prices please? charlotte
  • Contact: RD2, Taihape
  • Tel: 06-388-1444
  • Fax: 06-388-1859
  • Email: info@hikoitreks.co.nz
  • Web: www.hikotreks.co.nz
  • Updated: 31/01/2008

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Wanganui and Manawatu Highlights

  • Immerse yourself in Whanganui National Park and its grade II major river. This key shipping route of the past is now an action zone for canoes, kayaks and jet boats while the park itself is crying out to be walked in.
  • Drive the Whanganui River road to Pipiriki. Try not to stop at every scenic photo opportunity or you may be some time.
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