Westport is located at the North of the West Coast. The area is dominated by lush native bush, lakes, rivers,
and rugged coastline, all overseen by the great Southern Alps. The northern West Coast has one of the mildest
climates in New Zealand, perfect for scenic walks, amazing adventures, and relaxation on the wonderful beaches.
With two national parks, Kahurangi and Paparoa and
extensive bushlands, there are many walking and tramping tracks providing access to one of the world's most
beautiful natural environments. The forests are host to a myriad of native birds including rare species, while
at Cape Foulwind you can visit a seal breeding colony.
For more inquisitive or adventurous types, descend into an underground labyrinth, investigate a limestone
cavern system, challenge the white waters by raft or kayak, surge the rivers by jet boat, or explore the bushlands
by mountain bike, Argos, or on horseback. Raft through the surf on a dolphin encounter, tube raft through underworld
tunnels and glow worm grottos, grab a surfboard and ride the big West Coast waves, or take hold of a fishing rod
on a chartered fishing boat. Jump in a unimog and go for a spin.
There are many exciting places to dine, some award-winning, and many offering local delicacies from the land, sea
and rivers. Try the local range of beers from the local boutique brewery, Miners. Wherever you are staying, bars,
restaurants and cafes are always close by. Dine in a street cafe, enjoy a unique dining experience in an unusual
local building or watch the sun set as you dine overlooking the surf of the Tasman Sea.
The area is rich in kiwi history, from the arrival of the explorers to the thousands of gold hunters of the 1860s,
the traders, early settlers, farmers and coal miners. Historical interpretation centers and museums, including
Coaltown in Westport and the Reefton Visitor Centre 'Quartzpolis Mine', provide a fascinating insight into the
region's turbulent past. There is still gold in the local streams for you to try your hand at panning and you
can explore the old mines and relics throughout the region.
Is there any such thing as literature in Westport?The SpinoffThe Buller Rural Education Activities Programme Hall on Henley Street in Westport smells like a church and is decked out with those wooden school chairs that force you to bow and straighten, bow and straighten your back like an accordion, lest it sieze.