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Kiwi towns

NZ, Taranaki small kiwi towns places to go for selfie & scenic lookouts

  • 3 minutes

Surf, walks to find goblins and breathtaking Mt Taranaki

Discover quintessential New Zealand spirit in the small towns of Taranaki. Find great places for a photo opportunity. Enjoy exploring heritage places where the only people are your family, friends or yourself.

Volcano Taranaki. New Zealand. Cape Egmont. Natural ecological clean island
Egmont national park

The small kiwi towns below are part of our KIWI TOWNS series. Often the towns are on one of our road trips. Your holiday in Taranaki offers a number of interesting roadies, places to go from a day exploring gardens and parks to a wander looping through the region. Take time to check out Taranaki day, weekend and road trips for inspiration and stop at the small towns onroute.

  • Walks along coastal cliffs where a mosaic sofa invites you to take a break
  • Surf Coast Highway with the wild ocean beaches, small towns and quirky culture of Taranaki is personality plus.
  • Weekend markets and treasure trove of antiques, second hand stores to find
  • New Plymouth art, culture and the every present Mt Taranaki to explore

“Best Bits” take a detour, wander down side roads. The journey is worth it.

WHERE TO TAKE THE BEST SELFIE

ELTHAM

A town with a fascinating past as the place where the modern dairy economic powerhouse for New Zealand had its origins.

  • Pick a town mural, for instance heritage mural on King Edward St or Rotokare Reserve mural on The Village Gallery wall
  • Pick a heritage building such as 1901 Old Post Office building on Bridge St
  • Eltham toy wall with its quirky display

Learn more about What’s so great about Eltham, what to see and best things to do.

Post Office 1904, Eltham, New Zealand @Stephen Satherley
Post Office 1904, Eltham @Stephen Satherley
Wooden poles stand out of the sand at Patea

PATEA

A place where a song gripped the nation the rest is history.

  • Wharf remnants at low tide, atmospheric and moody photo moment
  • Iconic replica waka hoisted onto its concrete plinth, Aotea Memorial Waka
  • South Taranaki Museum whare (house) front entrance design entrance
  • Patea Maori club entrance with its vibrant signage
  • Town motto ‘Home of Poi E’
  • Whale rib sculpture Garden of Tutunui

Learn more What’s so great about Patea, what to see and do.

OPUNAKE

Surf Highway 45 is a homage to the surfing beaches of Taranaki.

  • Cape Egmont Lighthouse is a spectacular sight on the coastline. Open by appointment only
  • Art deco community owned cinema, watch a film and snap a photo at the same time
  • Discover ‘secret’ cliff top gardens complete with mosaic sofas and quirky letterboxes on the local Opunake loop trail

Learn more What’s so great about Opunake.

Cape Egmont Lighthouse, New Zealand @Expedia
Cape Egmont Lighthouse @Expedia
Jack Russell hero statute @Ron Lambert
Jack Russell hero statute @Ron Lambert

MANAIA

  • Romantic locations abound at Hollard Gardens
  • The enormous loaf of bread is a great selfie location
  • Jack Russell statue of George the hero dog who saved kids from a pitbull attack

Learn about What’s so great about Manaia, what to do and best things to see.

SCENIC LOCATIONS

INGLEWOOD

  • A place where the New Zealand toy metal vehicles Fun-Ho were manufactured and now are part of the town’s identity
  • LAKE MANGAMAHOE. A shared well sign-posted circuit walk takes you on a journey around Lake Mangamahoe through production forest, up to impressive lookouts and among mature ornamental tree plantings, great photo opportunities
  • EVERETT PARK SCENIC RESERVE, Walk, swim, explore a glow worm cave or picnic in Everett Park Scenic Reserve. The Manganui River is a local favourite swimming hole

Learn about What’s so great about Inglewood.

Model fire engine on roof of Fun Ho toy factory museum, Inglewood, Taranaki, North Island, New Zealand
Model fire engine on roof of Fun Ho toy factory museum, Inglewood

MOUNT TARANAKI photo locations

Hangatahua Stony River,Taranaki, New Zealand @Jane Dove Juneau
Hangatahua Stony River,Taranaki @Jane Dove Juneau

HANGATUHUA STONY RIVER WALKWAY

  • Superb locations for photographing Mt Taranaki
  • Peaceful river swimming holes

The Stony River (Hangatahua) Walkway offers a riverside walk in the surrounds of the Taranaki town of Okato.

Learn about What’s so great about Okato.

STRATFORD

Superb location for visiting Mount Egmont National Park

  • Enjoy a day in Egmont National Park enjoying the goblin trail
  • Discover Taranaki’s Dawson waterfalls
  • Spend a few moments waiting for the clock to strike in the glockenspiel tower for Romeo and Juliet to appear

Learn about What’s so great about Stratford, things to do.

Curtis Falls Track, Dawson Water fall, Egmont national park, Taranaki
Curtis Falls Track, Dawson Water fall, Egmont national park

EAT & DRINK

Manaia clocktower and Yarrows Bakery @People’s Network
Manaia clocktower and Yarrows Bakery @People’s Network

ELTHAM CHEESE

  • Lake Rotokare picnic with locally sourced Eltham cheese as a set piece in the photo moment

OPUNAKE

  • Fish n chips / burger and fries watching intrepid surfers challenge the elements. A bit of nip in the air, simply rug up and enjoy

MANAIA

  • Visit the largest bread factory in New Zealand and get a fresh off the production line, sticky bun (YARROWS)

BEST BITS TRAVEL GUIDE

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