Our iconic full-day rail cart adventure to the unique republic of Whangamomona.
Journey 82km along the line through breathtaking scenery and 20 hand-built tunnels. Traverse impressive bridges and pass through forgotten townships before pulling into the self-proclaimed Republic. Visit the Whangamomona Hotel, one of New Zealand's most historic hotels and the embodiment of the community's rich and quirky history.
DEPARTS: 7.30AM FROM TAUMARUNUI, DIRECTION CAN BE REVERSED (ie. you can depart from Whangamomona and do the trip in reverse to Taumarunui)
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Travel through the Tangarakau Gorge
Visit the Whangamomona Republic and the historic hotel
Listen to stories of the Forgotten townships of Matiere, Ohura, Tokirima, Haeo,and Tangarakau
Marvel at the breathtaking landscapes steeped in history and stories
Experience the line’s longest tunnel at 1.5km and the beautiful hand-built brick tunnels
82km rail cart journey
Knowledgeable local guide
Morning and afternoon tea stops with homebaking and snacks
Rail-side picnic lunch at Tokirima
Check in at the Forgotten World Motel and take a shuttle bus to the start of the line at Okahukura or Whangamomona depending on the way you are travelling the line. Here you’ll board your Rail Cart and set off on your journey through the Forgotten World. Immerse yourself in the changing views of rolling hills, remote farmland and native bush. Experience wildlife close to the tracks.
Stop along the way to hear stories, from your guide, of the land, its people and history. Travel over bridges and through hand-built brick tunnels, including the lines longest tunnel at 1.5km, and journey through the Tangarakau Gorge.
Enjoy morning and afternoon tea stops at historic settlements of Matiere and Tangarakau, and a rail-side picnic lunch at Tokirima.
Take time to stroll around the Republic of Whangamomona, explore the town and its charismatic pub. Then a return transfer will take you by bus To your starting point.
This tour runs Okahukura to Whangamomona and Whangamomona to Okahukura on alternate tours.
"The literal light at the end of the tunnel"
This was a brilliant day trip, great scenery, interesting and knowledgeable guides. Highly recommend this goes onto a bucket list and gets ticked off. It was loads of fun and to see the literal light at the end of the tunnel was awesome. (5-star review, Trip Advisor Jan 2024)
"Unique memorable experience"
My 89 year old mother and I had an enjoyable and memorably day with Forgotten World Adventures at Easter on the Republic from Okahukura to Whangamomona. We were blessed with good weather, but were well prepared for the cold in the tunnels thanks to the good pre departure advice. The FWA staff were all very knowledgeable, professional and ensured we had a great time, learned all about the history of the area and stayed safe. The food FWA provided was both delicious and generous. I particularly enjoyed the lunch with build your own sandwiches with very very fresh bread and a wide range of fillings. We had our car transferred to Whangamomona where we stayed overnight at the Hotel in the extremely comfortable new motel style units. I highly recommend this to friends and family. You won't be disappointed. (5-star review, 2023)
"Enjoyed the scenery & history"
We did the Republic tour, from Taumarunui to Whangamomona. Would highly recommend it. An early start in the morning mist created great scenery then the sun came out with blue skies for the rest of our trip. The guides ere excellent with good local knowledve and stories of the history of the remote countryside. Tasty morning, afternoon tea and lunch all provided in rustic railside settings. (5-star review, 2023)