Ireland hopes to double its global footprint by 2025 and part of that involves strengthening ties with the Whanganui community.

Irish Ambassador Peter Ryan visited Whanganui High School on Monday afternoon to make connections with Irish students, parents and teachers.

An Irish embassy will be opening in Wellington in January and Ryan said it was a special time as the ties it made with New Zealand were paramount to making their business and culture a lot stronger.

"Part of our job here is trying to see who we can reach out to, connect with and try to understand the place a bit better so thought it would be good to drop in," Ryan said.


He said Ireland already had a very good relationship with New Zealand and was very like-minded with certain matters including the environment and same sex marriage.

Ryan has been making his way around New Zealand over the past 12 months to get an understanding of the different cities.

Spending the afternoon at Whanganui High School, Ryan spoke with principal Martin McAllen, and teachers Caitriona Davies, from Tipperary, Jimmy Leonard from County Down and Colm Smyth from Longford.

A number of other staff also met with the ambassador and his Pathfinder Eoghan Walsh along with three New Zealand Irish students and a parent from Ireland.

They also spent some time in the Whanganui township exploring the main streets and walking along the river that Walsh said they both enjoyed.

Walsh said it is all about getting out and meeting the Irish community and understanding their links to explore more of New Zealand.

"Once we've had an understanding, it's easier to do our jobs here in terms of building a community, promoting our culture and building up our trade links.

"Like New Zealand, we are a small country at the edge of the ocean, a globalised country and having those links are really important for us," Walsh said.


So far Ireland has opened eight embassies around the world with another eight opening this year and a further eight next year.