Flexible cancellationsBook stress freeLearn more
3
Introductory

Traveller Rating

 

Activities
  • 6 day walk
Accommodation
  • 5 nights hotel/motel
  • 1 night lodge
Meals
  • 6 Dinners
  • 7 Lunches
  • 6 Breakfasts

7 Days$3395NZD

Hit the trails with confidence

Flexible Cancellations
Stress free booking, learn more about our flexible terms.

COVID safety measures
are in place with extra cleaning and hygiene protocols

Remote adventures
means social distancing comes naturally

Small groups only
Guided group sizes are strictly limited to a maximum of 14 people


Trip Code: MSA

Trip highlights


  • Enjoy full and half day hikes amidst some of NZ's best coastal scenery
  • Marvel at the magnificent vistas in the Marlborough Sounds & Queen Charlotte Sound
  • Visit Motuara Island bird sanctuary to see and hear incredible NZ birdlife
  • Relax in the comfort and hospitality of a secluded lodge
  • Sail the beautiful coastal waters of the Abel Tasman National Park after the hike to Torrent Bay
  • Take in the panoramic views of Nelson Lakes National Park from the bushline track
  • Climb to the summit of Mt Isobel at 1324 metres

Sample the finest walks in the upper South Island, including the best sections of the Queen Charlotte and Abel Tasman Tracks on this outstanding itinerary. This fully lodge based accommodated walk completes a circuit of the northern South Island, beginning with the stunning Kaikoura Peninsula Walk before taking in the spectacular scenery of the Marlborough Sounds from the Queen Charlotte Track. You'll also nestle into the tranquility of a remote lodge, weave your way through small bays and beautiful bushland along the Abel Tasman Walkway as well as retrace your steps along this magical trail from the decks of a yacht. The amazing scenery isn't finished yet as you divert inland from the coastal trails to Nelson Lakes to complete a circular track that provides wonderful views of craggy mountains and beech forests. Return to Christchurch via Hanmer Springs for a final walk to Mt Isobel or a well deserved soak in its therapeutic hot pools.


We will collect you from a central city location in Christchurch at 8am before we drive north to Kaikoura taking approx 2.5hours. The drive is scenic and we head to the Kaikoura Peninsula where we embark on our first walk along the cliff tops. We are rewarded with dramatic views of mountains and sea, where we can spot seals and seabirds. We continue to drive up the east coast for a further 2 hours to reach Picton; the gateway to the stunning Marlborough Sounds. We have time to explore the town, the marina or take a number of short bush walks before meeting for our first group dinner. We will spend the next 2 nights in Picton. Walking time: 1.5 - 2.5 hours

Meals:  L,D

This morning we have an early start to catch an 8am cruise to the far reaches of the Marlborough Sounds. Our first stop is Motuara Island, where we disembark to the magic of morning birdsong and have 2 hours to explore this interesting bird sanctuary. We can walk to a lookout point, taking approx 30 minutes in each direction offering incredible 360 degree views. Watch out for native penguins, tui, bellbirds, saddleback and yellow-crowned parakeets. Returning to our boat, we cross to Resolution Bay where we take our first walk along the Queen Charlotte track. The track is a well-graded old bridle path which climbs over a ridge and winds downward to the head of Endeavour Inlet, weaving through native bush with glimpses into the many bays below. On reaching Furneaux Lodge there is time for refreshments and possibly a dip in the sea before we catch our water taxi back to Picton. We overnight again in Picton. Walking time: Motuara Island 2 hours, Resolution Bay to Endeavour Inlet 3 hours

Meals:  B,L,D

After breakfast we pack an overnight bag to be transported by boat to tonight's accommodation, the rest of our gear is stored on the bus. We then transfer a short distance to Anakiwa and set out on another scenic section of the Queen Charlotte track. We start with an easy walk through mature beech forest to Umungata (Davies Bay), then climb to a headland, giving wonderful views into the Sounds. Weaving in and out of Manuka bush, we climb a ridgeline for more panoramic views of the vivid blue sea, secluded bays and bush clad shorelines. From here we gradually descend into the next bay to reach our comfortable lodge, accessible only by foot, bike or boat. The rest of the afternoon provides a great opportunity to relax in one of the many hammocks, take out a kayak or paddleboard, swim, explore the bush walks around the property, visit the Underwater Observatory (own expense) or the art exhibition spaces. When it is dark, make sure to explore the gloworm grotto! Walking time: 5 hours

Meals:  B,L,D

After a relaxed breakfast, we have chance to enjoy more of the surrounds and activities at our beautiful accommodation. We leave by water taxi at 11am and return to Anakiwa. We then drive to Nelson, where there is an opportunity to walk to "The Centre of New Zealand" which takes us to a vantage point overlooking the city and Tasman Bay. The final drive of the day takes us onto the small town of Motueka, known for its lively café culture and artistic community, where we will stay for the following two nights. Walking time: 1-2 hours

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we drive to Marahau and the start of the famous Abel Tasman track. We will take a half day hike into Anchorage along the Abel Tasman walkway. The track is well formed and drops into several beautiful sheltered bays and golden sand beaches. Around midday we have a picnic lunch overlooking Torrent Bay and then board a catamaran for an exciting sail around the heads and back to our vehicle. To round out a wonderful day, we take some time to enjoy Kaiteriteri beach, with the chance for a late afternoon swim or a relaxing stroll along the golden sands. From here it is only a short drive back to Motueka. Walking time: 3 hours Sailing: 3 hours

Meals:  B,L,D

Leaving Moteuka we have a short 1 hour drive inland into the Nelson Lake National Park and at St Arnaud we have a choice of a shorter 2 hour loop in the Lake Rotoiti Nature Recovery area or a 5 hour circuit to the upper slopes of Mt Roberts. This track climbs steeply to the bushline and the summit of the ridgeline with incredible views back over the lake and St Arnaud range, before returning via a loop track back to the bus and our accommodation. The native bush is stunning and Lake Rotoiti is a magic location with a mountainous backdrop. Walking options: 2 hours or 5 hours

Meals:  B,L,D

Intensive pest eradication has meant native bird numbers are increasing in the Nelson Lakes National Park. Early risers this morning will have the chance to take a short bush walk and experience the morning songs of the forest or “dawn chorus.” We then drive via the spectacular Buller Gorge and Lewis Pass to Hanmer, where we detour to Jacks Pass and hike via the subalpine scrub and open grassland to the summit of Mt Isobel (1324 metres) for panoramic views of the Hanmer Basin and beyond. There is the option for those who prefer to relax to visit the hot pools and soak in the thermal springs (own expense). Late afternoon we return to Christchurch and drop you off in central Christchurch around 6-7pm. Walking time: 3 hours

Meals:  B,L


Inclusions

  • 6 breakfasts, 7 lunches, 6 dinners
  • 5 nights hotel/motel ensuite accommodation on a twin share basis
  • 1 night lodge
  • Professional qualified driver/guide
  • Private vehicle transport
  • Marlborough Sounds Cruise to Motuara Island & Queen Charlotte walkway
  • Sailing boat on Abel Tasman trek
  • Healthy snacks to fuel you while trekking
  • Packs and poles (on request if required) - please let our staff know in advance
  • Concession fees paid to the Department of Conservation
  • New Zealand Goods and Service Tax (GST)

  • International or domestic flights and taxes
  • Arrival and departure transfers
  • Meals not mentioned in the itinerary
  • All beverages, other than breakfast
  • Water bottle (help us save the environment and bring your own drink bottle or hydration system)
  • Optional activities not mentioned in the itinerary (eg Underwater observatory at Lochmara Lodge)
  • Personal expenses (eg. phone calls, internet, laundry, shopping etc.)
  • Travel insurance
  • Visa (if required)

About Your Leader

Our Guides are one of our biggest assets. We pride ourselves on the standard and quality of these great people who you will be spending your holiday with. They come from all walks of life but they all have a common desire to give you the best possible experience, heaps of fun and lots of fond memories to take home with you. We provide you with the services of two guides for many of our trips, (this may depend on the size of the group). All are certified in first aid and CPR and many are advanced mountain guides.


Accommodation


Grading

Introductory  
3

To determine the grade of a particular adventure we consider a number of factors. These include the condition of the terrain, the altitude, the number of pass crossings and the length of the trip. This itinerary utilises formed tracks on all of the walking undertaken. The trekking is as expected for a trip of this introductory grade with no unexpected surprises in steepness. In general the hikes are of a half day duration which usually requires around 4 - 5 hours walking. The tracks are well formed and often have information panels available for additional detail. For you to be able to really enjoy this trip we recommend that you are to walk comfortably for a few hours at a time (with breaks included). We recommend 90 minutes of aerobic type exercise, (either cycling, jogging or power walking) three times a week for the three months leading up to your trip.


Departure dates


Notes

HS
Holiday Season

Want to organise a private group?

Fundraising events, sporting groups, family treats; learn how you can organise a Private Group from just 6 travellers.

Total Priceper person from

$3395NZD

Options & Supplements*
  • Single SupplementNZD$750
*Prices listed are per person

Essential information

Ready to book? Make sure you download and read the detailed Queen Charlotte and Abel Tasman Hike trip notes which contains all the essential information you need to know before booking. Once you’ve booked, we will supply you with a Pre-Departure document which contains a detailed gear list and other important information to help you prepare for your adventure ahead.


Trip reviews


Videos

Marlborough Sounds and Abel Tasman Trails | Adventure South NZ

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