One of Whanganui's best known tourist destinations is on the market.

Tamara Riverside Lodge at 24 Somme Pde is being offered for sale for $750,000 as a freehold going concern. The character two-storey backpackers lodge comes with onsite owner's accommodation and 16 rooms.

Owner Rory Smith said he had been marketing the property on TradeMe for the past 12 months and said while that brought a good deal of inquiry the marketing had been placed with specialist resort and motel brokers.

Mr Smith said the time was right to increase the marketing because he and his wife had bought another property nearby and wanted to develop that with the tourism market still firmly their focus.


"Basically we've had 23 years in this business and we want to get out at a time while we still like doing it," he said.

"We've built up a successful business, raised two kids here but I feel I've got one more business in me and I want to give that a crack," he said.

A candidate for the upcoming local body elections, Mr Smith said he had options with the new property.

"We've bought a house two doors down from Tamara on the corner of Ingestre St and Somme Pde. It's a two-storey property and we want to develop the ground floor into two motel-style units," he said.

He would also carry on with his other tourism-based business - Whanganui River Road Tours.

He said Tamara offered new buyers a good opportunity to get into a business at a time when tourism numbers were climbing in the region.

"A young couple could come in here and a make a real go of it."