2 Day Upper Whanganui

  • $ NZD Adult: 625.00 | Child: 495.00
  • DEPARTURE: Ohinepane
  • DIFFICULTY LEVEL: Safe and Fun
  • DATES: Departs Weekends, October to May Dec 27, 28, 29, 30, Jan 3, 4

(37.5km or 57km) Ideal if you have just a weekend to spare, or if you want to "test the water" before deciding on a longer trip.

This trip takes in the upper section of the river down to Whakahoro and includes many of the historic sites and rapids.

There are two options depending on the river levels and group fitness.  Get in touch with us to see what we do to tailor this trip to you!


This is a great option for an introduction to canoeing, and to the Whanganui River.  We have many return customers after enjoying the 2 Day Upper Whanganui first.

Trip Dates and Group Discounts: With a family of 2 adults and 3 children (14 and under) the third child pays 20% of the child rate. Group concessions are available.

*Trip start dates are a guideline only - with groups we can start a trip to suit you. We also run extra trips between Christmas and New Year and in early January.


Day 01

We depart Ohakune between 7.30 and 8.00am for the river. At Ohinepane we unload canoes and barrels and show you how to pack your canoe. Guides then give a talk on river and campsite safety, and then instruction on how to paddle your canoe. On most trips we have 2 guides so if you are a little nervous you are welcome to paddle with a guide for at least the first day. Once the guides are satisfied that everyone can steer their canoe then the group sets off on the river. The first day includes lunch at Poukaria Campsite, and we paddle past the old riverboat landing at Kirikau, and take a short walk at MaraeKowhai. This was the first mooring point of the Houseboat and the first nights stay on the 3 day trip from Taumarunui to Wanganui that was so popular over 100 years ago. View the Ohura falls, and the War and Peace Poles that were erected by the Hau Hau warriors. It is then a short paddle to the first nights camp at Maharanui.

Day 02

The gorge starts to narrow and it is a short mornings paddle down to Laceys Landing and Whakahoro. It is a short paddle up the Retaruke stream to the boatramp where we are met by our bus. We have lunch at the Whakahoro hut (the old schoolhouse) before an afternoon drive back to Ohakune.



Consider your clothing in two parts. Firstly, what you will wear canoeing and secondly, what you will need in camp. Also work on the assumption that your canoeing clothes will get wet so you must have a dry change for campwear.

Camping Clothes

Comfortable shoes. Complete change of warm clothes. Spare lightweight top. Warm socks. Towel. Warm hat (depending on time of year)


We advise everyone to wear something on his or her feet at all times. There will be occasions when you will need to step out of your canoe into river shallows. In these slippery conditions sandshoes or sandals are better than jandals.

Canoeing Clothes

Swimwear. Sandshoes, sandals or wetsuit booties. Shorts. Sunhat. Woolen or polypropylene top. Waterproof lightweight jacket or parka. Windproof leggings (optional). Woolen socks. Tracksuit or polypro pants (not jeans or any cotton). Light gloves (for warmth or blisters)