Lower North Island Golf Itinerary

7 DAYS

500 km

Highlights

  • Breathtaking scenery
  • Outstanding links golf
  • History and culture

Proximity

CAR-FREE TRAVEL OPTIONS

Experience some of New Zealand's best golfing locations on this loop journey, starting and ending in Wellington. Head north to the renowned Martinborough wine region and the Manawatu farming districts, stopping off at Masterton Golf Club and Manawatu Golf Club along the way.

From here, you'll go further north to Whanganui before travelling back along the west coast. Play a few rounds at Paraparaumu Beach Golf Club and Royal Wellington Golf Club en route. 

Day 1: Wellington to Wairarapa

Wairarapa
Martinborough Village, Wairarapa

By Destination Wairarapa

Wairarapa

WAIRARAPA

Heritage architecture and wineries.

Highlights

  • Classic Wine Trail
  • Charming rural towns
  • Antique and boutique shopping

Proximity

  • By car: 1 hr 10 min | 80 km via SH2 & SH53
  • By bus: 1 hr 35 min | by MetLink Rail

Begin your golfing holiday by travelling the short distance from Wellington to Martinborough, a picturesque village in the Wairarapa region.

Take the rest of the day to explore the local colonial charm and perhaps a couple of the 20 wineries, mostly within cycling and walking distance of the village square. Enjoy a vineyard lunch where you'll be served local produce alongside some of New Zealand's best pinot noir.

Day 2: Play golf in Masterton

Wairarapa
Masterton Golf Course, Wairarapa

By Masterton Golf Club

Highlights

  • Home of Kiwi legend Sir Bob Charles
  • Picturesque valley vineyards

Proximity

  • By car: 45 min | 47 km via SH2
  • By bus: 1 h 40 min | by Metlink

MASTERTON GOLF CLUB

18 hole golf course offering fantastic views of the Wairarapa valley

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Just under an hour away, you'll find the Masterton Golf Club, known locally as Lansdowne. Built on rolling hills with great views, this is the home course of New Zealand's most famous golfer, British Open champion Sir Bob Charles.

Masterton is the centre of the farming region of Wairarapa. Discover more about the region at the Aratoi: Wairarapa Museum of Art & History, where there are interesting exhibitions about the region’s history.

Day 3: Masterton to Palmerston North

Manawatu
Manawatu Golf Club, Manawatu

By Mark Alexander

Highlights

  • Oldest course in New Zealand
  • Host of five New Zealand Opens
  • Hokowhitu Cafe and Bar

Proximity

  • By car: 1 h 20 min | 108 km via SH2
  • By bus: 5 h 30 min | by Intercity or NakedBus

MANAWATU GOLF CLUB

Offers a challenging yet fair test for golfers of all abilities.

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The journey continues to Palmerston North, the largest city in heartland New Zealand with a vibrant student town. Today you will visit the Manawatu Golf Club, known locally as Hokowhitu. The oldest course in New Zealand, it's the stand-out course of the region. Hokowhitu has played host to many national events and is the home club of PGA Tour winners Craig Perks and Grant Waite.

If you're interested in sport, don't miss the New Zealand Rugby Museum to learn about our rugby greats and see some of the world’s rarest rugby artefacts.

Day 4: Palmerston North to Whanganui

Whanganui
Whanganui, Whanganui

By Visit Whanganui

Taranaki

WHANGANUI

Home to New Zealand's longest navigable river.

Highlights

  • Whanganui National Park
  • Whanganui Opera House & Sarjeant Gallery
  • Paddle steamer river tours

Proximity

  • By car: 1 h | 74 km via SH3
  • By bus: 1 h 20 min | by Intercity 

Today you'll travel to Whanganui, set on the banks of the Whanganui River (meaning "big river" in Maori).

Play the Whanganui Golf Club, known locally as Belmont. Once host to Gene Sarazen in the 1930s, the course has since hosted many national amateur and professional events. Laid out on sandy land, it is built across both flat and rolling landscapes.

Afterwards, learn more about the town's history by exploring the Opera House and Sarjeant Gallery or take a cruise on the PS Waimarie, New Zealand's only coal-fired paddle steamer.

Day 5: Whanganui to Wellington

Wellington
Paraparaumu Beach Golf Club, Wellington

By Graeme Murray

Highlights

  • Tranquil beach location
  • Nearby Kapiti Island Reserve
  • Car museum

Proximity

  • By car: 2 h | 145 km via SH3 & SH1
  • By bus: 3 h 10 min | by Intercity

PARAPARAUMU BEACH GOLF CLUB

Considered by many to be the spiritual home of New Zealand golf.

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Start making your way back south, towards Wellington, stopping off for a round of golf at Paraparaumu Beach Golf Club, one of the southern hemisphere's most respected golf links courses.

Having hosted 12 NZ Opens and despite being designed in 1947, Paraparaumu has all the characteristics of its older Scottish cousins. From here, you'll continue on the short journey to the 'coolest little capital in the world', Wellington.

Day 6: Play golf in Wellington

Wellington
Royal Wellington Golf Club, Wellington

By Graeme Murray

Highlights

  • Ideal walking course
  • Charming & elegant clubhouse
  • Podocarp forest backdrop

Proximity

  • By car: 55 min | 55 km via SH1
  • By bus: 1 h 20 min | by Intercity 

ROYAL WELLINGTON GOLF CLUB

Turner MacPherson designed championship course.

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Today is all about golf. Spend the day at the historic championship course, Royal Wellington Golf Club. A member course for many of New Zealand's leading politicians throughout history, it was the first royally endorsed club in New Zealand.

With rare native podocarp forest providing a picturesque backdrop to many holes, this is the perfect walking course. Have a bite to eat at the charming clubhouse before making your way back to the city.

 

Day 7: Spend the day in Wellington

Wellington
The stunning Wellington waterfront, Wellington

By Julian Apse

Wellington

WELLINGTON

A mix of culture, history, nature and cuisine.

Highlights

  • Art galleries and museums
  • Cafes, bars and restaurants
  • Wellington Botanical Gardens

TOP EXPERIENCES IN WELLINGTON

Renowned for its vibrant creative culture

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Finish off your holiday where you began, in the heart of Wellington. Today you'll play Miramar Golf Club, a links-style golf course beside Wellington Airport. Established in 1909, the course was redesigned on the same site in 1994 by Graham Marsh.

But there's plenty to see and do in the capital city apart from golf. Take the famous red cable car up to the Wellington Botanic Garden, to view native and exotic displays. Finish off your holiday with a visit to the national museum, Te Papa, or go for a stroll along the picturesque waterfront. 

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Important things you need to know about driving in New Zealand.

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