Top things to do

Top Choice Gallery in New Plymouth

Len Lye Centre

'Great art goes 50-50 with great architecture', so said Len Lye, the world-beating NZ artist (1901–80) to whom this contemporary-art gallery is dedicated. And indeed, the architecture is amazing: an interlocking fac…
Top Choice Latin American in New Plymouth

Social Kitchen

Inside what was once the Salvation Army Citadel, this trendy restaurant is filled with neon charm and taxidermy. Hanging meat and pigs' heads are displayed like art, but you can avoid them in the courtyard strung wi…
Top Choice Modern NZ in New Plymouth

Monica's Eatery

Beside the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery and Len Lye Centre, this all-day diner is homey despite its contemporary interior. Perhaps it's seeing handmade pappardelle lowered into bowls through the open kitchen, or the …
Top Choice Burgers in Whanganui

Citadel

Looking for the best burgers on the North Island? Community-minded Citadel, 10 minutes' drive from Whanganui centre, is a contender. Alongside classics, the Eh Monster is a feat of endurance. Order it (alongside loa…
Top Choice Museum in Hawera

KD's Elvis Presley Museum

Elvis lives! At least he does at Kevin D Wasley's astonishing museum, which houses more than 10,000 of the King’s records and a mind-blowing collection of Elvis memorabilia collected over nearly 60 years. 'Passion i…
Top Choice International in Palmerston North

Nero Restaurant

Set in a refreshed 1918 Victorian with a manicured al fresco dining area, Nero is the peak of fine dining in Palmy. The chef and owner is an ambassador for Beef & Lamb New Zealand, but also serves dishes like st…
Top Choice Fish & Chips in Opunake

Opunake Fish, Chips and More

This is as good as fish and chips gets. With a lengthy history (open since the 1960s), hand-cut chips, a range of fish (including fresh catches of the day to take home), smiling local owners and gluten-free options,…
Top Choice Vietnamese in Palmerston North

Saigon Corner

The pick of Palmy cheap eats, this cheerful, casual Vietnamese restaurant nails all the classics: pho, banh mi, rice-paper rolls, and noodle and rice dishes. Fresh and filled with locals, it's good to eat in or take…
Top Choice Museum in Palmerston North

Te Manawa

Te Manawa merges a museum and art gallery into one experience, with vast collections joining the dots between art, science and history. The museum has a strong Māori focus and includes plenty of social history, info…
Top Choice Gardens in New Plymouth

Pukekura Park

The pick of New Plymouth's parks, Pukekura has 49 hectares of gardens, playgrounds, trails, streams, waterfalls, ponds and display houses. Rowboats (per half-hour $15, summer only) meander across the main lake (full…