"Whanganui River Trip In New Zealand - Canoeing Adventure To The Bridge To Nowhere"
A Whanganui River trip in New Zealand, by canoe or kayak, is an increasingly popular way to experience some really wild and spectacular country in a peaceful, serene manner - moving at your own pace down the mighty watercourse between towering, bush clad cliffs that look down on the slowly paddling travellers far below.
Located in the west of the lower North Island of New Zealand, southeast of Mount Taranaki, the Whanganui River rises close to the volcanic mountains of the Central Plateau and flows through the dense bush of Whanganui National Park, past Jerusalem and Pipiriki, to reach the sea at Wanganui.
While one way of seeing the river is by fast moving power boat, in recent years more and more visitors have grasped the chance of exploring the river more slowly, by canoe or kayak.
Where less than 100 years ago paddle steamers made their way up and down the Whanganui - one of which can now be experienced in all its former glory in Wanganui - today the quiet swish of paddles in the water has become a frequently heard sound on the river.
There are plenty of opportunities to explore beyond the river itself. A half hour walk takes you to the famous "Bridge To Nowhere".
Built in the 1920s when land was given to ex-servicemen from the First World War to farm, twenty years later, when the last of them had given up trying to eke a living here and had walked off the land, the bridge was left "high and dry" in the middle of dense rainforest.
In the brief video below, accompanied by original rock'n'roller Little Richard singing "Long Tall Sally" to make sure it never gets boring, a young couple from the UK spend three days - and nights - paddling down the Whanganui in all kinds of weather .
On the Whanganui River it can get quite wet, and apparently following the motto "If you can't beat 'em, join 'em" , she obviously delights in taking a swim in the somewhat murky waters.
Luckily there are roaring fires in the huts along the course of the river, and a hot shower doesn't go amiss either, as we see.
Canoeing is not for everyone, but if you like a leisurely "close encounter" with practically untouched nature, a Whanganui river trip in New Zealand is definitely an interesting option.
There are a number of tour operators who hire kayaks and canoes to visitors, providing the necessary equipment (such as lifejackets), provisions and accommodation en route.
The area has a strong Maori population, and as you will see in the video, some of the sleeping places reflect this, and there are also other opportunities to experience elements of their culture.
So if you are into kayaking or canoeing, and love to explore the wildest nature far off the beaten track, you might want to consider going on a leisurely Whanganui river trip in New Zealand.
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