Review: Westland Recreation Center in Greymouth, New Zealand West Coast

Review: Westland Recreation Center in Greymouth

For those of you who have driven the West Coast of New Zealand, it feels like one of the longest yet the most beautiful drives on the planet.  The twist and turns on the road never end, yet the scenery excels.

View from the Punakaiki Pancake Rocks and Blowholes Walk just off the road

I had a good 6+ hour drive between Hokitika and Abel Tasman National Park, so I decided to hit the gym on the way in the town of Greymouth (pop. 9,700), which is by far the largest town on the West Coast and one of only 3 principal towns.  Yes, it is that kind of drive.  Having experienced the municipal recreation centers in both Tokyo and Taipei, which are reasonably priced and well-stocked, I decided to give Greymouth's Westland Recreation Center a try.

The Westland Recreation Center is operated by the Grey District Council.  A 1-day pass to the fitness center is $15 NZD (~$10 USD), which is more expensive than the other municipal recreation centers I have visited and even the privately-owned Snap Fitness in Queenstown.  However, this facility was very spacious and clean with everything you'll need.

Since I knew I probably wouldn't be able to hit another gym until I go to the North Island, I wanted to go ham on this workout and decided to do legs =( followed by HIIT on the battle ropes.  There really was no excuse anyway since I hadn't hit legs for nearly a week and the gym had a squat rack, power rack, leg machines, and 25 kg (55.1 lbs) plates.  Do NOT confuse those with the 45-lb plates you use in the U.S. or you will be in a world of hurt when that barbell comes down on you.  Use the 20 kg plates (44.1 lb); yes, you are allowed to go lighter (c'mon, vacation?).

I did need to bust out my phone again to do some kg to lb conversions, which was simple with citywide free WiFi.  After maxing out my time in the gym for 3 hours, I hit the road for 6 hours.

Bottom Line

When you've got long drives, it's always good to get a workout in between to keep it moving and prevent yourself from sitting for hours straight.  For me, a good workout keeps me active and awake, so I won't end up sleeping behind the wheel and crashing off a cliff, which abound on the West Coast drive.  If you ever take on the long West Coast drive, I would definitely recommend a workout pit stop at the Westland Recreation Center in Greymouth.


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