Otamatea is a residential suburb located on the northwestern edge of the urban area in Whanganui. It sprawls approximately 3 kilometres on the State Highway 3 north of Virginia Lake. With a land area covering 127 hectares (1Km2) and population density of 10.11 per hectare, the population stands at 1,284 (2013 population census). In spite of being a small residential suburb, Otamatea has a lot of beautiful spots to visit of which some are listed below.
top places to visit in otamatea
Renowned as the longest passable river in New Zealand, it has carved memorable experiences for both early European and Maori settlers. Over the past decades, the Whanganui River has attracted lots of visitors from the world. Some fun things tourists find interesting include- hearing thrilling folklore stories (korero) from Maori, getting firsthand tour guide from the locals, paying a visit to the Whanganui Riverboat Centre and high speed boat riding amongst others.
Durie Hill War Memorial Tower
Built in 1919, this 205ft tower is indeed a rare sight to behold. The tower has an inbuilt tunnel equipped with a grand-styled lift that sends you 66 metres to the hill top. It was originally designed to assist people to easily have access to the suburbs scattered over the hills which was difficult to access because of its zigzagness. It has now turned a tourist site where locals and foreigners flock to have a perfect view of the city centre. With just $2.00, you can have entry into the tower, pass through the tunnel and use the elevator.
Located in the outskirts of Otamatea, the Virginia Lake is a combination of grand beauty and aesthetics. Situated in the midst of the lake is an alluring fountain perfect for night illumination. Having a 30 minutes’ walk around the lake, the woodlands and its surrounding stunning gardens is every tourist’s dream. Other features around the lake include a café for adults and spacious playgrounds for kids.
Whanganui Regional Museum
Established as far back as 1895 with the private collection of Samuel Drew, a local Jeweler, this great museum is a full embodiment of Whanganui’s history. From the earliest history of Maori to the social history of Whanganui, the museum is a great delight to everyone. Strategically located at Watt Street of Queen’s Park Memorial, the building is a one stop destination to most historians and tourists. Reconstruction was attempted in 1928 after which there have been series of refurbishments and strengthening after some few recorded quakes.
Kai Iwi Beach
Located west of Whanganui, beach lovers would pay anything to visit this spot. With its graciously flowing sea water and breathtaking aura, it is likely the friendliest beach for family picnics. Memorable activities like surfing, beach walks, flying fox, taking a sunset siesta over Tasman Sea can be carried out on the beach. Other activities include swimming fishing and having your kids play on the black sand.
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