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DAY 9-10: New Zealand itinerary 2 weeks, 14 days top sights

West Coast

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Lake Brunner, West Coast Lake Brunner, West Coast


Where to go is outdoors. Irresistible West Coast  scenery is the drawcard. The attraction of a pristine native forest wrapped around mountain ranges, lush dense coastal forests and untamed wild ocean beaches creates memory moments. Stunning, unforgettable are geological sculptural arches, layers to the world’s most accessible glaciers. There are places to go that suit every taste. Glorious scenery is folded into visitor experiences from wild water jet boating, kayaking, horse trekking, bird watching on lagoon waterways and, let’s get your gold prospecting skills polished, gold panning.

Driftwood on the beach at Hokitika


  • Spend time lingering in Hokitika; grab a selfie of the iconic driftwood Hokitika signage and visit a kiwi (bird) sanctuary. Marvelling at the beauty of crafted POUNAMU (jade) in Hokitika and Greymouth. Listen to stories about pounamu’s cultural significance to Maori
  • Enjoy a short walk along the Hokitika Gorge With its aquamarine water
  • Explore PAPAROA NATIONAL PARK with Punakaiki, Pancake rocks extraordinary limestone karst formations, easily accessible and wheelchair friendly
  • Enjoy coastal walks along Cape Foulwind; observe NZ fur seals and soak up the views from the lighthouse
  • Okariki Lagoon and the elegant herons is a wildlife highlight


  • Go north and explore Denniston Plateau to Westport’s Coal Museum where reminders of the heyday of coal mining is marked with rusting machinery and abandoned buildings.
  • Heritage fans have the evocative history of gold and coal mining. Places rich in history, gold mining towns, BLACKBALL, REEFTON & ROSS. Discover the story of GHOST towns, WAIUTA & GOLDSBOROUGH. Learn about RUNANGA and its role in the miner’s revolt in the 1930’s and the location of the deepest mine shaft in Australia and New Zealand
Heritage building of "The Bank of New Zealand", now the "Left Bank Art Gallery", Greymouth, West Coast
Paparoa National Park


  • Kayak through Paparoa National Park through lush temperate rainforests and past soaring limestone cliffs
  • Raft the surging white water depths of the BULLER & WHATAROA RIVERS and explore rivers seldom visited. The breathtaking scenery is a bonus
  • Delve into miner’s tunnels and explore gold mining trails throughout the West Coast

Greymouth is the arrival point for the Tranzalpine train from Christchurch. Greymouth has galleries specialising in pounamu (jade) jewellery and objects, local art works and artisan goods using upcycled materials. Greymouth has a substantial number of architectural heritage sites worth spending time wandering around town. The Floodwall walk is a heritage highlight with the power of the sea, river mouth sandbars and the difficulty of maintaining the Greymouth Port graphically illustrated. Greymouth offers visitors easy access to the iconic Punakaiki Pancake Rocks, Charleston and underground caving and plenty of outdoor walks exploring old gold mining sites.

… learn more Greymouth travel guide – Best Bits.


Hokitika, is a cool little town from great coffee, cafes, shopping for pounamu creations, a waterproof jacket to spectacular scenery at its doorstep. The dramatic beach with the well known driftwood signage is fun. There are wild westie rivers, mountains and two glorious deep inky lakes to explore. The place is a tourist hub with excellent galleries, shops and creative places to indulge in some retail therapy.

Hokitika's clock tower
Once an airport, now cows in a paddock, West Coast


You have arrived in Greymouth and collected your rental vehicle. Check the travel guides for Greymouth, Westport and Hokitika to select your bucket list must-do activities and enjoy deciding the best place to base yourself.


From Distance Time
Hokitika 37 km 30 mins
Punakaiki 47 km 45 min
Westport 102 km 1 hr  30 min


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