After descending Durie Hill, we drove to Queens Park in the center of Whanganui. While there we visited the Sarjeant Gallery and the Whanganui Regional Museum. The Whanganui Regional Museum has a great collection of Maori treasures. The Sarjeant Gallery houses an impressive art collection. My favorite exhibit was “The Paradise Project” by Sue Cooke. We had to take our shoes off before going inside this exhibit. It was a painted room of Antarctica but we were a part of the exhibit by being inside of it. Even the floor and ceiling are white, which enhanced the feeling of being there.
After browsing through the museums we drove to the Virginia Lake Reserve. Many black and white swans swam in the lake. We walked the trail around the lake while it was still light out.
Dusk fell and we ate dinner in town. We then went to our hostel. This was my first time staying in a hostel. I had always thought they were small, crowded and dirty. I was pleasantly surprised to find that it was like a clean dorm room. The hostel was attached to a cozy bed and breakfast. There was also only one other person there.
Whanganui is a pleasant, peaceful town. The next morning we continued our trip.