Things to do in Westport – The Gateway to Coastal and Nature Adventures!
Last Updated on 28/10/2021
Westport – a stunning west coast destination in New Zealand, situated in the South Island. It’s one of the oldest European settlement locations – a heritage town famous for fishing and mining. One visit to this coastal destination will make you fall in love with it. From beautiful beaches to surf, and numerous breathtaking nature walkways to visit, here are some of the best things to do in Westport – the ultimate nature & coastal destination.
Table of Contents
- 1 Enjoy the Spectacular Views at the Cape Foulwind Walkway
- 2 Enjoy the Seal Activities at the Tauranga Bay
- 3 Explore the Cycling Trail of the Old Ghost Road
- 4 Walk through the Mining History at the Coaltown Museum
- 5 Explore the incredible Pancake Rocks at the Punakaiki
- 6 Discover enchanting wonders in the Charming Creek Walkway
- 7 Catch the waves at the lovely Carters Beach
- 8 Spice up your holiday plans with Westport I-Site
- 9 Take a trip to the Oparara Basin, Karamea
- 10 Explore New Zealand’s Great Walks along the Heaphy Track
Enjoy the Spectacular Views at the Cape Foulwind Walkway
Situated at the edge of the west coast coastal line, 15-minutes from the Westport town. The walk through the Cape Foulwind route is considered to be one of the most scenic walkways in all of South Island. The perfect viewing platform for enchanting coastal hill sceneries, a lighthouse, the incredible sea colonies and more. The travel duration from one corner to the other is an hour.
Enjoy the Seal Activities at the Tauranga Bay
Not so far off from the Cape Foulwind Walkway is the charming Tauranga Bay. This place is a real treasure. It’s where you find large colonies of adorable looking Fur Seal Colonies. Watch the captivating seal activity. Nothing warms your heart like watching the seal pups play with their parents and just their general behaviour. This wholesome activity is worth adding to your list of things in Westport.
Explore the Cycling Trail of the Old Ghost Road
Location (Northern Trail head)
Another must-add to your list of things to do in Westport is trekking along the Old Ghost Road by bike or foot. It’s nestled between Westport and Karamea – just 40-minutes from town. This nature tour is going to be a one-of-a-kind nature tour. It can be rocky and rugged (come prepared). Magnificent views – including the stunning Ghost Lake, brilliant birdlife. A paradise worth exploring.
Walk through the Mining History at the Coaltown Museum
Situated in the town of Westport, the Coaltown Museum can be found facing Victoria’s Square. The museum may be small, but the tour will be entertaining. From well-displayed artefacts and photos to fascinating videos, transport yourself back in time, where Westport boomed as a mining town. Worth adding to your list of things to do in Westport.
Explore the incredible Pancake Rocks at the Punakaiki
This uniquely limestone rock formation is a popular tourist attraction amongst travellers who journey from Westport to Greymouth (even Christchurch). It’s approx. 1-hour from town. Enjoy a quick walk from the car park, witness the fascinating phenomena of the Tasman Sea forcing its water through the holes in the limestone, spraying the water up in the air similar to a whale’s blowhole. Exciting!
Discover enchanting wonders in the Charming Creek Walkway
This bewitching walking trail is another west coast-favourite amongst travellers and hikers. Located nearly 1-hour from Westport, this track includes a railway line that goes through some incredible sceneries. Travel over swing bridges, past waterfalls, go through tunnels. It doesn’t matter if you are trekking on foot or bike. The experience is guaranteed to still be magical.
Catch the waves at the lovely Carters Beach
In the mood to have a beach day out? Maybe ride some waves? You will find the lovely Carters Beach located just a few minutes from the heart of Westport, next to the Westport Golf Club. It is considered to be one of the most favoured beaches on the South Island for beginner-level surfing. There are plenty of things to enjoy around the coast, as well once you take a break from the lovely blue waves.
Spice up your holiday plans with Westport I-Site
Take a break from nature and the coastal ventures. Visit the Westport I-Site Visitor Information Centre situated in the heart of the town, down Palmerston street downtown Westport. If you need the latest details on which beaches to visit to catch the low and high tides, the best times to trek, where to go, what to do and best times to do it – all of this will be offered by the knowledgeable staff at the Westport I-Site.
Take a trip to the Oparara Basin, Karamea
Karamea is where you are headed (nearly 2-hours from Westport) to see this natural marvel. Nestled in the famous Kahurangi National Park, The Oparara Basin is created with a mixture of limestone arches, caves – all dating back approx. 3 million years ago. Walk across ancient rainforests and rugged hill landscapes – one of the most beautiful places Karamea has to offer.
Explore New Zealand’s Great Walks along the Heaphy Track
Come visit another treasure found in Karamea. Witness the unique blended contrast between the West coast and lush rainforest landscape. This nearly 2-hour track is a real treat for nature lovers. Cross a 148 m suspension bridge, enjoy ever stretching verdant landscape views atop Mt Perry, here’s a chance for you to explore and surround yourself in a real natural wonderland.