Taranaki Recreation

The region offers a huge range of activities. You can take a gentle stroll through cool native forest or set off on a multi-day hike.
Looking for general recreation information?

There’s river rafting, ocean surfing, and winter snow sports - you can snowboard in the morning and surf the same afternoon. There are art trails, festivals, award-winning museums and galleries and a thriving café culture. Taranaki is also known for its family-friendly beaches and its gardens, which are particularly spectacular in the rhododendron season.

Taranaki | Tourism New Zealand

Puke Ariki Information centre

Attraction and recreation | New Plymouth District Council

Things to do | Venture Taranaki

Sports and recreation facilities

District councils around the region provide a range of recreation facilities including sportsgrounds, parks and gardens. Your local community center may also run many different activities and groups for the community to join.

Attractions and recreation | New Plymouth District Council

Recreation | South Taranaki Council

Facilities | Stratford Council

Taranaki community centres | Citizen's Advice Bureau

Sports clubs and social groups

New Zealanders enjoy a huge range of sporting activities - the Sport New Zealand  website lists everything from Aikido to Zen Do Kai!  Check the site to see what’s available in your area and how you can get involved.  Joining a club or team is a great way to meet people.

Find a sport | Sport New Zealand

Clubs in Taranaki | CAB

Sport and Recreation Community Directory | Taranaki Groups directory 

Clubs and Organisations | South Taranaki District Council 

Club and Regional Sport Organisation search | Sport Taranaki

Tracks and walks

There are many opportunities to stretch your legs, clear your lungs and get close to nature on the walkways and tracks you’ll find wherever you go in New Zealand.

Parks and Reserves | Stratford District Council 

South Taranaki Parks and Gardens | South Taranaki District Council 

Walks in Taranaki | DOC

Parks and reserves | New Plymouth District Council

Regional gardens | Taranaki Regional Council


New Plymouth offers plenty of opportunities for children to play in safe playgrounds, including a number of skateboard parks. To find children's playgrounds in New Plymouth check out this site.

Playgrounds | New Plymouth District Council

Hunting and fishing rules

Both fishing and hunting are a big part of life for many in the Taranaki region. Check the Department of Conservation (DOC) and Fish and Game NZ websites for full information about licences and restrictions on hunting and fishing in freshwater. The Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI) has information about the rules of fishing in the sea. 

It is very important to be aware of restrictions as there can be serious penalties for breaching them. 

Taranaki | Fish and Game NZ

Hunting in Taranaki | DOC

Taranaki and central area fishing rules | MPI

Dog walking areas/ dog regulations

New Zealand has various laws about looking after and controlling dogs. District councils have their own bylaws. 

Dog overview | New Plymouth District Council

Animal control | South Taranaki District Council  

Dogs | Stratford District Council 


Taranaki features a large number of tracks through beautiful scenery. Check out these sites for great cycle rides in the region.

Taranaki | Bike trails

New Plymouth Bike Loop

Art and culture

Museums and galleries

There are a number of museums and art galleries to visit in the Taranaki region. You'll find details of each on the NZ Museums' website.

Taranaki | NZ Museums

Arts and culture | Visit Taranaki


There’s good everyday shopping in all of the larger centres in Taranaki, particularly in New Plymouth.


Taranaki has many markets.  There is the Taranaki Farmers' market every Sunday morning in New Plymouth, where you can buy Taranaki's great produce directly from the local producer. You can visit the monthly Seaside Markets or browse one of the many community markets around the region selling produce, crafts and second-hand goods.

New Plymouth markets | Visit New Plymouth

Taranaki weekend markets | CAB search

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