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With Fitzroy Beach Holiday Park and Urenui Beach Camp perfectly located on the beach front, it would be understandable that once you arrive at the parks, you wouldn’t want to leave! Fortunately, if you feel like exploring New Plymouth and the surrounding Taranaki region, there are plenty of attractions (within 30 minutes ‘drive) on offer for the whole family.

 

Pukekura Park

Pukekura Park in central New Plymouth – Credit Rob Tucker VT

Reviews on Trip Advisor rate Pukekura Park as the number one place in New Plymouth to visit. A world-renowned park located in the heart of the city, Pukeura covers 128 acres and offers visitors a range of plant collections, exotic trees, formal gardens, lakes and walking trails through native bush. The local teams playing at the cricket ground by the park’s entrance might capture your interest as you arrive too!

A must see if you’re visiting over the summer period is the TSB Bank Festival of Lights which is a spectacular event held at the park from mid-December to early February.

Pukekura Park is child and pet friendly as well as wheelchair accessible.

 

New Plymouth Coastal Walkway

New Plymouth Coastal Walkway – Credit Rob Tucker VT

Whether you enjoy fabulous views or feel like a little exercise, the award winning Coastal Walkway provides the opportunity for both. The 13km path forms an expansive sea-edge promenade which stretches from Pioneer Park at Port Taranaki, all the way to the eastern side of Bell Block Beach with numerous pedestrian access points along the route.

The walkway is ideal for walking, running, cycling or skating, or you can simply enjoy the view of the dramatic west coast.

New Plymouth Coastal Walkway is child and pet friendly as well as wheelchair accessible.

 

Sugar Loaf Islands and Paritutu Rock

Dave “Chaddy” Chaddfield of Chaddy’s Charters – Credit Rob Tucker VT

A visit to New Plymouth wouldn’t be complete without enjoying one of the many activities on offer at Sugar Loaf Islands and Paritutu Rock. This marine protected area is located just outside the port of Taranaki and is popular for scuba diving, recreational fishing and kayaking.

The scenery is spectacular and the deep water is home to a variety of marine life. Enjoy the sights on the water with Chaddy’s Charters who tour the Sugar Loaf Islands or contact one of the many diving operators which will allow you to explore the underwater sights.

If you prefer to stay on dry land, Paritutu Rock on the eastern end of New Plymouth’s harbour has a track on the northern side which will allow you to scramble to the top and enjoy the spectacular views of the coastline, city, port and Sugar Loaf Islands.

 

Brooklands Zoo

Families will love a visit to the Brooklands Zoo which is free and home to farmyard animals, meerkats, Capuchin and Cotton-top Tamarin monkeys as well as oriental small-clawed otters.

Visitors can walk through a free-flight aviary which also houses a selection of colourful birds. The Capuchin monkeys are fed daily between 12noon – 12.30pm. The zoo is wheelchair accessible and child friendly.

 

Puke Ariki

Puke Ariki library and museum New Plymouth waterfront – Credit Rob Tucker VT

People of all ages and cultures are attracted Puke Ariki, a world-class library, museum and visitor information centre which tells the stories of Taranaki – past, present and future.

The centre provides changing exhibitions, displays, collections, an award-winning website and interactive technology. Housed in a striking two-wing complex in the heart of the city, the New Plymouth i-SITE Visitor Information Centre is conveniently located inside the building’s main entrance, which is off St Aubyn St.

Since its opening in 2003 Puke Ariki has won multiple awards for design, delivery, technology, innovation and architecture.

The centre is child friendly, wheelchair accessible and provides additional facilities such as a play area and restaurant.