Manawatu is packed with great scenery, rugged west coast beaches for surfing, native bush walks, great driving routes and beautiful rural farming land. The dramatic Manawatu landscapes with lush forests and majestic gorges sweep from the rugged Ru... Show More
Tourist Information About Manawatu
Manawatu is packed with great scenery, rugged west coast beaches for surfing, native bush walks, great driving routes and beautiful rural farming land. The dramatic Manawatu landscapes with lush forests and majestic gorges sweep from the rugged Ruahine and Tararua Ranges and out to the Tasman Sea, making an exciting adventure playground. Explore glow worm caves, many museums, golf by cable car, boutique shopping, and street art. Take one of the many cycling, mountain biking or walking tracks through Manawatu where you'll find stunning scenery and views. You can also get your adrenaline fix with bungy jumping, white water rafting, horse trekking and kite surfing, to name a few. The iconic Te Apiti – Manawatu Gorge is great to explore, you can discover ancient native bush and a land steeped in legend by foot, bike, jet boat or horseback.
Best Attractions and free things to do in Manawatu
1. Te Apiti Wind Farm
The wind farm has become such a sign of pride in the Manawatu region that windmills are now featured on the Manawatu district's official logo. The farm is conveniently positioned on Saddle Road, making the car park with a wind turbine in the center quite accessible.
Limestone Creek near Apiti is a little-known site in Manawatu where you can observe these gleaming worms. Take the short loop track to the cave in the shape of a triangle and voilà! Glowworms in the sky! This is a memorable activity to bring your family and friends for a lovely evening activity.
3. The Feilding Farmers Market
Feilding has loosely been named New Zealand's most beautiful town. Locals are friendly, and time seems to move more slowly. Make your pit stop at Feilding on a Friday morning to take advantage of the town's traditional farmers market and fill your belly with some local fare.
4. Explore the Art of Palmerston North
There's something artistic around every bend in Palmerston North: sculptures, murals, street art, statues... There's a lot to see and do in Palmerston North's city core, especially among the ancient buildings. There are monuments of public luminaries, Maori carvings, and even a little duck pond in the Square.
5. Himatangi Beach
Himatangi Beach is definitely off the main path, with a population of less than 500 people. The tranquil beach is a local surfer's paradise, complete with its own surf club. The campers in the adjoining holiday park are treated to spectacular sunsets every evening.
6. Ruahine Forest Park
The Ruahine Forest Park is made up of beautiful bushy ranges that offer a variety of recreational opportunities.
There are dozens of treks in the area's famed forest park, ranging in length from an hour to a four-day expedition. The Rangiwahia Hut Track is the most popular, carrying trampers over the Whanahuia Range's rich golden grasses. You'll for sure have a great time!
7. Beehive Creek
In Manawatu, the small creek is a bit of an outlier. The course, which features exotic plants, feels out of place in the surrounding scenery. However, we've been told that the forest is natural to the area and that human activity has had only a minor impact on it. During this simple 2-hour stroll, you can explore everything on your own.
8. Pohangina Valley
The Pohangina Valley is definitely worth visiting. The Pohangina River, which offers green views over white cliffs, is a great place to relax. Traditional Kiwi farmlands may be seen as far as the eye can see from the high elevations, and there are plenty of short walks and swimming areas on the lower ground.
The Pohangina Valley makes for a beautiful drive across the Manawatu region, with plenty of opportunities to stop for walks or a stroll around the gardens. Terraces, lush pastures, and rolling hills give way to forest-covered mountainsides rich in ancient native vegetation as you go down the valley. There are lots of reasons to stay in the Pohangina Valley, as you will discover here.
9. Discover Palmerston North by Bike
The city of Palmerston North literally begs to be explored by bike, with so many bike stands! Furthermore, navigating about the Manawatu region by bike is a breeze, thanks to the New Zealand Cycle Trail, which connects Palmerston North and Mangaweka.
10. Totara Reserve Regional Park
This park is definitely on a must see and do list! The regional park has two campsites, but you'll have to get there early in the summertime because it gets busy and they're first-come, first-served. The Totara Reserve has many memorable walking trails, as well as a large number of native birds and a couple of natural swimming holes to observe, so bring your bathing suit!