It's essential to have suitable equipment, clothing and food for a safe and enjoyable experience on the Whanganui Journey.

Huts on the Whanganui Journey don't have toilet paper. Remember to take this with you.

Personal equipment

  • Sleeping bag (3–4 season)
  • Tent (even if staying in a hut)
  • First aid kit (including insect repellent, sunscreen, blisterkit, personal medication e.g. antihistamine for allergy towasp stings)
  • Survival kit (survival blanket, whistle, paper, pencil, high energy snack food)
  • Safety equipment relevant to the time of year (eg map, compass)
  • Drink bottle (1-2 litre capacity)
  • Eating and cooking utensils (knife, fork, spoon, plate, cup, pot/pan/billy, cleaning kit, tea towel)
  • Matches or lighter in waterproof container
  • Toiletries
  • Torch/flashlight and spare batteries
  • Toilet paper
  • Rubbish bag
  • Booking confirmation letter and ID
  • Use a toilet when you see one and be prepared with a back-up toilet option
Specialist equipment
  • Life-jacket
  • Kayak or Canadian canoe
  • Paddle/s (include a spare)
  • Plastic drums (or equivalent) for storing food, dry clothes and personal equipment
  • Dry bags
  • A copy of the New Zealand Canoe Association’s Guide to the Whanganui River (optional)

These items can be hired as a package from local suppliers.

If you're camping
  • Tent
  • Sleeping mat
  • Camera
  • Ear plugs for communual bunkrooms
  • Swimwear
  • Sandals or aqua shoes for walking in water


  • For multi-day walking you'll need at least one set of clothes to walk in and another dry set to change into at night. Walking boots or firm footwear (should be comfortable and well broken in)
  • Socks (wool or polypropylene)
  • Shorts (quick dry material)
  • Shirt (wool or polypropylene)
  • Under layers, top and bottom (wool or polypropylene)
  • Mid-layers (wool or polar fleece)
  • Raincoat (waterproof, windproof with hood)
  • Overtrousers (wind and water proof)
  • Warm hat and gloves
  • Sunhat and sunglasses
  • Extra socks, underwear, shirt/lightweight jersey
  • Lightweight shoes for inside the huts

You can't buy food on the Whanganui Journey.

Bring food that is lightweight, fast cooking and high in energy value. For example:

  • Breakfast: cereal/porridge/oats, firm bread, honey or other spreads
  • Lunch: cracker biscuits, cheese, salami, jam/jelly, fruit
  • Dinner: instant soup, pasta or rice, dried vegetables or fruit, cheese or dehydrated (freeze-dried) meals.

You'll also need water, snacks, biscuits, muesli bars, tea or coffee, powdered fruit drinks and emergency food in case of any delays on your trip.

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