The Manawatu Whanganui region is a fantastic place to explore year round, the region inherited the name from the two major river systems in the region the Manawhatu River and the Whanganui River.
The region takes up a large area of the lower North Island including the Central Platau containing three of the countries largest volcanoes Mount Ruapehu, Ngauruhoe and Mount Tongariro.
There are two national parks located within the region, the Whanganui National Park established in 1986 and the Tongariro National Park which is New Zealand's oldest national park and includes the Central Plateau.
Whanganui has many attractions particularly for outdoor pursuits, the Whanganui River journey is a fantastic ride down the Whanganui River by Kayak taking around five days and covering 145 kms with stunning river views and wildlife to see along the way.
The Whanganui river can also be explored with a cruise on the historic Waimarie Paddle Steamer, the paddle steamer was salvaged from the bottom of the river around 50 years ago and restored to original condition and relaunched in 2000 as an attraction for the area.
The central Plateau provides two ski fields the Turoa Ski field and the Whakapapa Ski field both located on Mount Ruapahu skiing is available during the winter months, there are also some fantastic walks available in the area.
The Tongariro Alpine Crossing located in the Tongariro National Park is a fantastic 19km walk that starts on the Western side of Mount Tongariro and finishes on the Northern side of the Mountain.
The Tongariro Northern Circuit is also located within the Tongariro national park and is one of the nine great walks of New Zealand, taking 3 to 4 days to cover the walk takes you through some of the most spectacular alpine scenery in the country.
Manawhatu provides many great attractions for the region and the most popular are the rafting experiences available on the Rangitikei River, there are grade five rafting adventures down the river available year round.
For Hikers there are numerous walks available in the area, the Ruahine Range is a popular place for walks, this alpine range is covered in snow in the winter months but much more inviting during the warm summer months.
Palmerston North the largest city in the Manawhatu region provides accommodation, the city provides many attractions to explore, the New Zealand Rugby Museum is popular, there are golf courses available and cafes and shopping in the city center.