4 Day Guided Whanganui Guided Tour

  • $ NZD Adult: 1145.00 | Child: 995.00
  • DEPARTURE: Whakahoro
  • DIFFICULTY LEVEL: Bumpy and Fun
  • DATES: Depart Tuesdays*, October to May. Also 28 December, 4 January.

This trip starts at Whakahoro and covers 90km to Pipiriki. Great for those with a little less time than the five day tour but would like to experience as much as possible while out there.

Our 4 day 'Explorer' Safari starts at Whakahoro, the same starting point as our 3 day Safari!

This is a fantastic option for families with children, large groups and people who generally just want to take it all a bit slower with that 'extra day' to do some more exploring off to the side of the river in canyons and tributaries, more time for swim stops and you will be getting to camp that bit earlier in the day for some relaxation.
 This is a great option for our guides to be flexible and focus more on you, the customer as we are paddling less per day, so the options are endless.

We organise everything on this trip, from booking the national park and DOC permits, river transport, all Camping and safety equipment is provided and all food is prepared and cooked for you from the lovely cooked breakfasts in the morning through to the 3 course gourmet dinners in the evening.


Enjoy the Whanganui River with us on this 4 day Guided Canoe Adventure!


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 6:45am and 7.00am for the river. At Whakahoro we unload canoes and barrels and show you how to pack your canoe. The gorge starts to narrow and we leave the last road access point behind at Whakahoro - the second and final mooring point for the old Colonial Houseboats. We pass Laceys and Wades landings and several old maori Kaianga. Later in the morning we pass Mangapapa campsite for a possible lunch stop, Man of War Bluff, Kirikiriroa where the river does a huge horseshoe turn, the Verandah, the Whirlpool and on down to Tamatea's Cave and at Ohauora campsite where we will stay for the first night. If we have time and weather on our side there are a couple of stops today for canyon exploring and a swim.

Day 02

Breakfast and on the river at 9am. A morning paddle through a deep gorge and up to John Coull Campsite for morning tea break, then past the Tangarakau and Whangamomona rivers, around Mangawaiiti campsite we stop for lunch and a swim, and Otumangu landing - one of the post WW1 faming settlements. Shortly afterwards we see the first pine trees since Whakahoro (planted by the early settlers), and we stop at the Mangapurua campsite for the night. There is the walk to the Bridge to Nowhere (45 min each way) either tonight, or first thing the next morning.

Day 03

After a leisurely breakfast there is likely the walk to the Bridge to Nowhere track. After returning we are back on the river for a short paddle until lunch before continuing down past some great geology. There is a stop here to see an old abandoned farm with some Colonial relics before finishing up at the Ramanui Campsite with dinner and hot showers. If you would like to secure an upgrade to a shared cabin at an extra cost then please enquire, first in first served for booking these.

Day 04

After breakfast we pass Kahura landing and one of the locations for the filming of "River Queen". It is a two hour paddle through the steep gorge with stunning walls until the river cascades through Ngaporo rapid and down to Ngaporo campsite for snacks and/ lunch. We then paddle past the Mangaio stream and Mangaio rock where several of the early eyebolts can still be seen that were winching points for the riverboats. After that Autapu rapid then several small rapids before the Paparoa rapids swings the canoes past the old eel traps and down to the landing at Pipiriki, our finishing point.



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)