Majestic and snow-capped, Mount Taranaki watches over a region that’s all about rejuvenating adventures and refreshing experiences. It’s one of the few places where you can go snow boarding in the morning and surfing the same afternoon, followed by an evening relaxing in a restaurant with great food and wine.
From surf to summit
According to Maori legend, Mount Taranaki once resided in the middle of the North Island alongside Ruapehu, Ngaurahoe and Tongariro, but lost a battle for the heart of pretty Mount Pihanga and was banished to the coast.
Today, the Taranaki region offers a huge range of outdoor activities, from strolls through native forests and multi-day hikes, to river rafting, ocean surfing and winter snow sports. When it’s time for something a little less energetic, you’ll discover fascinating art trails and festivals, award-winning museums and galleries, a thriving café culture and some great local shopping.
A magnificent outdoor playground and a magnet for photographers, Mount Taranaki is a powerful reminder of the area’s volcanic past. Although it erupted at least eight times over the last 6000 years, the mountain has chosen to remain dormant since 1755.
Gardens, lakes and fountains
Pukekura Park in the city of New Plymouth is a beautiful haven at any time of the year. Established in 1876, it includes 52 hectares of formal and informal flowering gardens, towering trees and peaceful lakes with waterlilies, waterfalls and row boats.
Treasures, stories and culture
At Puke Ariki - New Plymouth’s interactive library, museum and visitor centre - you’ll discover more than 6,000 significant Maori taonga (treasures). This beautifully designed complex looks out to Len Lye's Wind Wand sculpture on the award-winning coastal walkway.
New Plymouth airport receives daily flights from Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. Regular bus services operate from Auckland and Wellington.
You can travel to Taranaki from the north and south on State Highway 3, and from the east on The Forgotten World Highway 43.
The region’s i-SITE visitor centres - at Hawera, Stratford and New Plymouth - provide reservation services and up-to-date information.
The popular themed highway, Surf Highway 45, leads from one great surf beach to the another along Taranaki’s vast coastline.