Local Attractions

Please see below for some of the local attractions of interest to many of our visitors.

We would also like to mention that if you are looking for somewhere to stay both Omaka Lodge and Bradley’s Gardens have comfortable quality accommodation for your enjoyment.

Tongariro National Park

The Tongariro National Park is a World Heritage site which has the distinction of dual status, as it has been acknowledged for both its natural and cultural significance.

The Tongariro Alpine Crossing in Tongariro National Park is a tramping track in New Zealand, and is among the most popular day hikes in the country.

People of all ages enjoy walking the crossing with Lava flows, an active crater, steam vents, emerald-coloured lakes and magnificent views combine to make this an unforgettable walking journey.

Whanganui National Park

Handy to the Forgotten World Gardens the Whanganui National Park is located in the central North Island with the township of Taumarunui to the north and Wanganui to the south. The small towns of Pipiriki, Ohinepane, and Whakahoro are main gateways to the river itself.

Enjoy the amazing scenery and the activities available including canoeing, kayaking, jetboating, tramps and walks.

Roads lead into the park from all directions. Some give access to main track systems, others directly to the river. A number of companies run on demand shuttles to the start of tracks and organise car shuttles for people canoeing the river.

Whanganui River

The Whanganui River provides a whole range of experiences to the visitor.

According to Māori tradition, the river was first explored by Tamatea, one of the leaders of the original migration to the new land, who travelled up the river and on to Lake Taupo. Many places along the river are named in his honour.

You can tramp or walk, jet boat, kayak, canoe, cycle and sightsee.

With a length of 290 kilometres (180 miles), the Whanganui is the country’s third-longest river. Much of the land to either side of the river’s upper reaches is part of the Whanganui National Park.

Cycle Trails

There are numerous cycle trails in the Ruapehu Region within easy reach of the Forgotten World Gardens.

Some of these are part of the official network of New Zealand Cycle Trails but there is also a huge number of other opportunities to cycle in various parks and other locations open to the public.

Some examples include:

  • The Timber Trail
  • Makokomiko Road Circuit
  • Taumarunui to Historic Double Bridge
  • Ongarue Back Road to Timber Trail
  • Kawautahi Road to Oio Road
  • Forgotten Highway Cycle Trail
  • Okahukura Saddle Road
  • Hikumutu Road Cycle Trail

Parks & Rivers

You can enjoy a number of local parks and rivers within easy reach of the Forgotten World Gardens.

Some examples include:

  • The various Forgotten World Gardens
  • Cherry Grove
  • Te Peka Lookout
  • Mt Hikirangi
  • Rangaroa Reserve
  • Sunshine Scenic Reserve
  • Ohinetonga Scenic Reserve
  • The Whanganui River
  • The Ongarue River
  • The Whakapapa River (pictured)

Canoe, Kayak & Jetboat

There are many opportunities for canoeing, kayaking and jetboating in the Taumarunui Ruapehu area near the Forgotten World Gardens.

You can travel by kayaks, canoes, Canadian style canoes, go on your own, in a group, with a guide and even hire a cultural guide to go with you and explain historical features and points of interest.

If speed and a thrill are what you are seeking you may enjoy a jetboat trip.

You have a wide choice of operators and options to suit your circumstances and interests from short trips, day-trips or longer expeditions from up to 5 days.

Mt Ruapehu Sky Waka

Ride the Sky Waka – a journey into the clouds.

New Zealand’s most unique gondola experience.

Situated within the UNESCO dual world heritage Tongariro National Park, Sky Waka travels 1.8kms through one of the North Island’s most rugged and spectacular landscapes on Whakapapa, Mt Ruapehu.

The cabins seat up to 10 people and move at an operating speed is up to 6 metres per second giving you floor to ceiling views of the volcanic landscapes.

There is also an opportunity to enjoy top class hospitality at Knoll Ridge Chalet.

For more infromation see


Forgotten World Adventures

Forgotten World Adventures runs self-driven Rail Cart tours along the decommissioned railway line of the Forgotten World Highway.

Nestled within the deep hidden valleys of New Zealand’s Forgotten World has been described as the ultimate way to explore rural New Zealand. Travel along a decommissioned railway line, through tunnels, over bridges and rivers and to townships that time forgot. Forgotten World Adventures shares a history unique to New Zealand. It’s truly unforgettable.

Choose to travel a segment of the line, or the entire 142 kilometres. RailCart tours depart during the summer months of October through to May. You can depart from three locations,Taumarunui, in the heart of the King Country; Stratford, in the heart of Taranaki and the self proclaimed Republic of Whangamomona.