Whanganui ( (listen); Māori: [ˀwaŋanui]), also spelled Wanganui, is a city in the Manawatū-Whanganui region of New Zealand. The city is located on the west coast of the North Island at the mouth of the Whanganui River, New Zealand's longest navigable waterway. Whanganui is the 19th most-populous urban area in New Zealand and the second-most-populous in Manawatū-Whanganui, with a population of 42,300 as of June 2021.
Whanganui is the ancestral home of Te Āti Haunui-a-Pāpārangi and other Whanganui Māori tribes. The New Zealand Company began to settle the area in 1840, establishing its second settlement after Wellington. In the early years most European settlers came via Wellington. Whanganui greatly expanded in the 1870s, and freezing works, woollen mills, phosphate works and wool stores were established in the town. Today, much of Whanganui's economy relates directly to the fertile and prosperous farming hinterland.
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