Whanganui Journey @ Whanganui River (5 day kayak trip / ~145km): Day 1, Cherry Grove, Taumarunui -> Poukaria Campsite, 36 km Day 2, Poukaria Campsite -> Mangapapa Campsite, 32 km Day 3, Mangapapa Campsite -> John Coull Hut, 37 km Day 4, John Coull Hut -> Tieke Kainga Hut, 30 km Day 5, Tieke Kainga Hut -> Pipiriki, 20 km
The Drop Scene near Pipiriki on the Whanganui River became known as an iconic beauty spot in the early 20th century. A paddle steamer took tourists up the river to enjoy the ‘Rhine of New Zealand’. The name 'Drop Scene' was given to the view because it looked like a painted theatrical landscape, although there was an existing Māori name, Aratira.
The Waimarie paddle steamer operated on the Whanganui River as far as Pipiriki from 1902 to 1949. It later sank and filled with silt. Salvaged in 1993, it was restored, and since 2000 has run between Whanganui and Ūpokongaro, 13 kilometres upriver. The smaller Wairua operated from Pipiriki to Maraekōwhai, from 1904 to 1938. It was also salvaged, and restoration began in 1987. Since 2006 it has made runs to Hīpango Park, 25 kilometres up the river.
Maori wooden memorial, made from a waka, and carved to mark the grave of Te Mahutu, at Pipiriki, between 1860 & 1890. Wooden memorial known as Nga Rangi-o-Rehua or Te Koanga-o-Rehua. Photograph taken in Piririki by William James Harding, between 1856 and 1886.