Founded in 1893, Raetihi originally relied on the Whanganui River for access. Nearly 15 years later, the town was finally connected by road to Wanganui. This friendly historic town has the oldest theatre in the southern hemisphere. It’s also a place to source a wild kiwi encounter in the nearby Waimarino Forest. Close to both the Tongariro and Whanganui National Parks, Raetihi is a handy base for hikers, kayakers and snow sport enthusiasts. Functional facts: Approx. population 1050, visitors centre, limited accommodation, basic shopping.