Things to Do in Westport for Couples
Down-to-earth, rustic and providing access to the wild West Coast’s untamed wilderness, Westport certainly offers an alternative retreat for couples. It’s a place to watch cute seals or enjoy the uncrowded trails of Charming Creek or The Old Ghost Road, to learn a new skill together like surfing, or to simply enjoy watching the vivid stars beside the fire on one of Westport’s beautiful beaches. Get inspired for your romantic getaway or honeymoon with this list of romantic activities in Westport for couples.
For more things to do in Westport for couples, as well as more travel tips, see The Honeymoon Guide to Westport.
1. See Cute Fur Seals at Cape Foulwind
Ok, so the name doesn’t sound all that endearing, but the Cape Foulwind Walkway is a great place to see gorgeous New Zealand fur seals, which objectively is the most romantic thing ever! Not only is the 1h15min one-way walk is an easy-going trail that won’t leave you huffing and puffing, but the highlight along the trail is a viewing platform above a seal colony. Although seals can be seen frolicking all year round, the best time to visit is between November and February.
Location: Cape Foulwind Road, Tauranga Bay, approximately 17km (11 miles) from Westport town centre.
2. Tackle The Old Ghost Road Together
An icon of the West Coast, The Old Ghost Road is a hiking and mountain biking trail which offers a rewarding adventure for couples. The 85km (53-mile) trail that was once a gold miners’ road has been revived among majestic native forest, open tussock mountaintops, river flats and long-forgotten valleys. The trail’s history is still evident as you come across four ghost towns along the route. While accommodation along the route is basic, there’s something romantic about the private timber sleepouts nestled among the forest. Learn more about the trail in the 10 Great Bike Trails on the South Island and Mountain Biking on the West Coast.
Location: Burke Creek, Mokihinui, Seddonville, approximately 51km (32 miles) from Westport town centre.
3. See Spectacular Waterfalls on the Charming Creek Walkway
Now, there’s a name that’s more “charming”. The Charming Creek Walkway is a four-hour return journey following historic bush tramways alongside dramatic river gorge scenery awash in small cascading waterfalls and dripping mosses. The main event, however, is Mangatini Falls tumbling into the Ngakawau Gorge. Note that the access to the walk from Ngakawau (the entrance closest to Westport) is closed due to a landslip. Learn more about Westport’s walks in the 9 Best Walks in Westport.
Location: Charming Creek Road, Seddonville, approximately 58km (36 miles) from Westport town centre.
4. Enjoy a Romantic Stroll on Westport’s Beautiful Beaches
Westport is home to a couple of iconic beaches which sets the tone for the rugged landscape of the West Coast that you’ll experience throughout your road trip. North Beach and Carters Beach are huge stretches of sand scattered in driftwood and popular places to stoke up a small bonfire, toast marshmallows and watch the stars. Alternatively, a long romantic stroll on the beach will do just fine.
Location: Carters Beach – Marine Parade, approximately 5km (3 miles) from Westport town centre. North Beach – Derby Street, approximately 3km (2 miles) from the town centre.
5. Go on a Glowworm Cave Tour
A hidden gem just south of Westport is the glowworm and limestone caves of the Paparoa National Park. Underworld Adventures are eager to take you on various epic adventures to experience them, whether its a walking glowworm cave tour or a black water rafting and caving tour. Either way, you’ll see ceilings of stalactites and astounding glowworm colonies that rival those of Waitomo.
Location: 7368 State Highway 6, Charleston, approximately 25km (16 miles) from Westport town centre.
6. Do a Craft Brewery Tour and Tasting
Caught in Westport on a rainy day? Don’t let the honeymoon celebrations come to a halt! Use it as a good excuse to check out the West Coast Brewery for its craft beer tastings and brewery tours. Sit down for a favourite West Coast pastime with craft beer tasting paddles or get the complete experience on a brewery tour, which takes you behind the scenes and guides you through the brewing process.
Location: 10 Lyndhurst Street, Westport town centre.
7. Learn to Surf Together
Nothing strengthens the bond quite like learning a new skill together, like surfing! You have some fantastic surf schools in Westport, including Westcoast Surf and Bazil’s Surf School. Westcoast Surf offers couples’ personal training for a more intimate experience on the stunning Tauranga Bay. Alternatively, Bazil’s offers group lessons with plenty of one-on-one time on either North Beach or Tauranga Bay depending on what are the best conditions. Plus, Bazil’s also offers SUP tours through the Kawatiri Lagoon for a more relaxing way to get out on the water.
Location: Westcoast Surf – 299 Tauranga Bay Road, Cape Foulwind, approximately 16km (10 miles) from Westport town centre. Bazil’s Surf School – 54/56 Russell Street, Westport town centre.
8. Check Out the Art Galleries
While you’re exploring the town, get inspired at Westport’s quaint art galleries. The Whakane Gallery is a good choice, which is also an espresso bar arguably pouring the best coffee in town. Alternatively, have a quick browse around the InterSpace Gallery of The Art Hotel to see contemporary art exhibitions.
Location: Whanake Gallery & Espresso Bar – 173 Palmerston Street. Art Hotel – 10 Brougham Street, Westport town centre.
9. Enjoy a Romantic Meal Together in a Rustic Cafe or Tavern
Did we mention that Westport was a mining town? That vibe is still evident, which incidentally, means the town favours a more casual cafe and tavern dining scene than something more “romantic”. Nevertheless, it’s all part of the charm so get down to places like Johnny’s for a relaxed dining experience cosied up in one of the booths with the fire roaring in winter. They have a tapas menu with meals designed to be shared. On your way in or out of Westport as you’re travelling along the Buller Gorge, stop by Berlins Cafe & Bar for a coffee and amazing views of the Buller River. Finally, a cute place for breakfast or lunch is PR’s Cafe, serving well-presented plates and coffees in a casual cafe environment with an indoor/outdoor flow.
Location: Johnny’s – 62 Palmerston Street. Berlins Cafe & Bar – 1205 Lower Buller Gorge Road. PR’s Cafe – 124 Palmerston Street.