TSB TOPEC provides white-water adventures on the local rivers of the Waiwhakaiho, Manganui and Waitara, which range in difficulty from Grade 1 – 3. TSB TOPEC is audited annually by Maritime Safety New Zealand. Staff are industry qualified and undergo regular safety training to ensure competency.



Dependent on ability participants can use sit-on-top or sit-in, decked kayaks when they ride the local white-water river rapids. Other flat-water options include kayaking skill development on lake Rotomanu or at Ngamotu Harbour. Of course, kayaking can also take place in the world famous Taranaki Surf at selected spots.


River Bugging

River Bugging is a white-water sport where a single person navigates a stretch of river in a craft known as a river bug. The river bug is a small inflatable craft with an inflatable tube at each side of the user and an inflatable back rest behind. The user sits or lies between the tubes. The bugs are amazing fun for all abilities whether it be negotiating rapids on a river journey or surfing the waves.

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Dam Dropping

Unique to Taranaki – you, a kayak and a 30ft drop of water. Pure adrenaline. Could you paddle to the edge of Normanby Dam, then take the drop? Your hoots will be heard for miles! You have the option of using body boards, rafts, sit-on kayaks (easy to use) or the sit-in kayaks (require a little more nerve!).

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River Safety

TSB TOPEC has delivered the River Safe programme since 2003. The program promotes the knowledge and skills necessary to keep safe in and around rivers. Practical skills covered include swimming rapids, various rescues, and river crossing. This activity is conducted on-site at the tail-race waterflow, and is a fantastic program for young people growing up around waterways.

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Lake Rotomanu and Ngamotu Beach are fantastic Sailing venues.



Abseiling can be experienced onsite either using our purpose built artificial abseil wall or at one of our local scenic abseil locations. Take the height challenge on!


Rock Climbing

Rock Climbing can be experienced on-site using our two purpose-built artificial walls, at the local YMCA indoor climbing gym and at the outdoor climbing mecca of Wharepapa South. Rock climbing is about problem-solving as you dance up the wall. Show us your groove!


Participants opting to go caving with TSB TOPEC will have an amazing underground adventure experience. TSB TOPEC operates in a selection of caves just north of Taranaki with features aptly named The Gallery, The Ogres Teeth and Fallopian, to name a few! Along with a unique experience, participants learn about the features of a cave, the critters that we find in the caves, and the history of the area.



TSB TOPEC is located just a short drive to Egmont National Park. The variety of tracks, rivers, and natural features that are available can cater to individuals of all experience and ability levels. Staff are experienced Bush Leaders navigating you to places such as Dawson Falls, the Pouakai Hut and scenic tarns beyond, along the Veronica Track, up The Puffer, or up Stoney Creek.


Bush Safety

Our day trips, overnight or multi-night trips involve a range of activities, survival skills and navigation. Overnight trips can include tramping to a remote location, campfires and creating a group shelter. All groups carrying enough food and equipment sufficient for their needs. Our respect for kaitiakitanga means that groups take only memories and leave only footprints.

Alpine Summer

Experience the Alpine environment during Summer; long nights, incredible landscapes, and beautiful sunsets. Our Mounga provides the inspiring environment for a truly spiritual experience.


Orienteering / Rogaine

The DOC reserve and local environment is the perfect place to learn orienteering skills in a safe controlled location. Take up the challenge to get lost and find your way again!

Adventure Based Learning (ABL)

Adventure Based Learning is aimed at developing personal and social skills in an adventurous context. ABLs develop team-work, leadership and allow individuals to push themselves in a challenging, but fun environment. The Mud Run is a great initial ABL experience, with many more to follow.

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High Ropes

TSB TOPEC has an on-site High Ropes Course, which has been constructed in a stand of Native trees. The course will challenge you as an individual while also developing team-work and responsibility. Build trust and resilience with us.

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Low Ropes

Our Low Ropes Course is also located amongst the native trees and has a selection of elements that will challenge even the most agile. It is a great activity as part of a problem solving / team building programme or as an individual challenge.

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Team Building

Outdoor activities are the perfect setting to develop team-work and cooperation. Through challenges and problem solving, individuals come together to form functioning, supportive groups. A selection or combination of ABL, low and high ropes challenges, creative rafting and kayaking activities or cave crawling can assist in the building of great team cohesion, leadership and trust.

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Leadership courses are available where recognising leadership styles, and developing effective decision-making and communication skills are crucial to leading a team or organisation. Evaluation of performance, including reflection and feedback are also an integral part of the process.


Education for Sustainability

TSB TOPEC is committed to protecting the natural environment. Sustainable practices are employed from recycling, growing edibles in the garden, encouraging Kaitiakitanga, and participating in conservation efforts. We also offer a range of activities that relate back to the science curriculum including tailored guided walks, exploration of the river environment, examination of pest free habitats and the importance they play in our lives.

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NZQA Assessment

TSB TOPEC staff are registered teachers, so the centre runs secondary school NCEA unit standard and achievement standard courses. We can also facilitate evidence gathering for assessment for schools with Consent to Assess (see SCHOOLS Page for more information).

In 2020 TSB TOPEC received Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) funding for its Level 3 and Level 4 tertiary training courses (see HOME page for more information).