Taranaki: A Region Like No Other

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Visiting Taranaki for the Coastal Arts Trail? There’s so much on offer in Taranaki to enrich your time in the region like no other.

Vibrant and buzzing with copious things to do, see, eat, and experience, Taranaki is a mecca for outdoor enthusiasts, foodies, families, and arts and culture lovers. Officially New Zealand’s sunniest region for 2021, and with an exciting array of upcoming summer events including TSB Festival of Lights, UB40 concert, Summer Festival, WOMAD, and Oxfam Trailwalker, Taranaki is the place to be!

Tempt Your Tastebuds

Taranaki is a food-producing hub, so you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to satisfying your hunger or thirst. With an abundance of cafés, restaurants, bars, and eateries right around the maunga, many of which offer paddock-to-plate style menus that spotlight our local produce, you’re sure to find a memorable meal.

In New Plymouth, try Meat & Liquor for prime cuts of meat and tasty cocktails, Social Kitchen for mouth-watering shared plates, down a local craft beer at Shining Peak Brewery and be wowed by their upmarket menu, or discover Gamma Ray’s Burgers as part of the food truck hub that is Liardet Street Projects. The new kid on the block is Wild Pear Kitchen, a fully plant-based café with flavoursome superfoods. A short scenic drive to Ōakura will take you to the authentic Italian restaurant Toret Cucina Italiana, stop in for a meal with a view at The Vineyard Bistro at Okurukuru Winery, or beach-front Black Sands Pizzeria. Mountain Restaurant and Bar (part of the Ngāti Ruanui Stratford Mountain House) offers fine dining with an outlook of native flora and birdlife from your table. The nearby Shakespeare-themed town of Stratford is home to artisan bakery The Baking Company, and Shakee Pear Café (inside of Stratford’s Pioneer Village – a step back in time to the pioneering past of Taranaki). If you find yourself in Hāwera, add Upside Down Eatery or The Burnt Place to your list for an impressive dining experience.

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South Dunedin beckons

 

 

Immaculate Landscapes

With bountiful native bush tracks, and spectacular coastal scenery, your camera will be full of stunning holiday snaps from your time in Taranaki. Discover the wealth of tracks and trails on Taranaki Maunga – uncover the magic of Dawson Falls, explore the Goblin Forest (otherwise known as the Kapuni Loop Track), or take a dip in the alpine Wilkies Pools – all family-friendly, accessible tracks. For the more prepared and adventurous explorers, trek Pouākai Crossing and take an iconic photo of the maunga perfectly reflected in the Pouākai Tarn. If you want to keep your adventuring closer to sea-level, pay a visit to the fenced-off predator-free bird sanctuary that is Rotokare Scenic Reserve.

Still want the challenge of a climb, but don’t want to tackle the maunga? Scale Paritutu Rock for epic 360-degree bird’s eye views of the coastline and New Plymouth. Taranaki also has an abundance of public gardens, such as King Edward Park in Hāwera, Hollard Gardens in Kaponga, and New Plymouth’s Tūpare, Pukeiti, and Pukekura Park. If you’re keen to stretch your legs and see some of the art in public places that are included as part of the Coastal Arts Trail, the New Plymouth Coastal Walkway is a 13km promenade that extends along the New Plymouth coastline, and includes highlights such as Len Lye’s kinetic sculpture Wind Wand, Mothers and Daughters stone sculpture, and the Te Rewa Rewa Bridge. Or take a stroll around the man-made Lake Mangamahoe and be awed by the Californian Redwoods.


Head north to explore the Whitecliffs Walkway and find yourself in awe of the Three Sisters rock formations. Or go south and meander the Ōpunakē Loop Trail to discover the secret garden and artsy mosaic couches. Drive the Surf Highway 45 and stop at the Cape Egmont Lighthouse and SS Gairloch shipwreck, or discover a landscape that seems to have escaped time, along the Forgotten World Highway. Stop in at the Republic of Whangamōmona for a bite to eat at the Whangamōmona Hotel, then venture on further to the Forgotten World Adventures.

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Meet Karen & Trevor and their Bürstner TD727

 

SS Gairloch Shipwreck

History Buff

Everywhere you turn in Taranaki, you’re immersed in local history. Discover more about our local stories at Puke Ariki or Aotea Utanganui museums, or pair the experience of Tawhiti Museum and Traders & Whalers with a boat tour from Chaddy’s Charters. The tour heads out of the New Plymouth port and into the Tasman Sea and around the Sugar Loaf Islands, with the captain offering commentary of the local history. Then drive an hour south to Tawhiti Museum to see the stories you’ve just heard about brought to life with life-size and scale-model displays. Take a step back in time at Taranaki Pioneer Village and explore 10 acres of heritage. Or stop in at the Taranaki Aviation Technology and Transport Museum to discover an extensive collection of interactive displays.

Escape Masters

 

Fun-Tertainment for Everyone

Whether you’ve got the kids with you or you’re looking for something different to do as a group, a couple, or travelling solo, we’ve got you covered. Trot off to the Hillsborough Hideaway for the downhill luge, mini-putt course, and Holden car museum.

Bowlarama offers ten-pin bowling, laser tag and black-light mini putt – perfect for a rainy day. For those looking to challenge their logical thinking, try one of the themed Escape Masters Rooms. Get close to the animals at Brooklands Zoo or Stoney Oaks Wildlife Park. Venture to Stratford to discover the Romeo & Juliet-inspired Glockenspiel, or climb to the top of the Hāwera Water Tower in South Taranaki to capture some amazing aerial views of the south.

Come to Taranaki for the Coastal Arts Trail, and stay for the decadent dining, spectacular outdoor adventures, fascinating local history, and memory-making experiences. Start planning your escape to Taranaki today – find out more at taranaki.co.nz/visit

 

 

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