Located toward the southern end of the North Island in the Manawatu district, Palmerston North is a thriving city that retains all the charm of inland New Zealand. It is often called "the student city," as university students make up a large portion of the population. At the center of the city, its famous central open space, the Square, includes walking trails and picnic areas and is surrounded by shops, restaurants, and art galleries. The Plaza, the largest shopping center in the region, has over 100 stores to compliment the boutique shops of the downtown area. The city has also emerged as a thriving musical scene, drawing many nationally and internationally recognized performers.
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