Abel Tasman Walking Tour
OverviewDiscover the captivating beauty of Abel Tasman National Park, a breathtaking gem nestled at the tip of New Zealand's South Island. Escape into nature as you embark on an unforgettable 5-day self-guided walking journey along natural rock pools, suspension bridges and lush coastal forest on one of New Zealand’s Great Walks.
Make your way to the charming city of Nelson, where a shuttle will take you to the picturesque town of Mārahau. While you’re here, you can unwind at a waterfront beer garden or devour a burger served straight from a caravan before getting ready to set foot on the path of exploration. The next day, pack your day bag and meet your guide, who will brief you on the adventure ahead. You’ll then spend the day crossing estuaries, strolling through open country and winding along several gullies as you cross Mārahau to Anchorage. After a well-rested night at the Abel Tasman Lodge, you’ll catch an aqua taxi the next morning to continue your hike. Take your time as you uncover the hidden treasures of Torrent Bay, where an iconic swing bridge and the stunning crescent-shaped Onetahuti Beach await your discovery. Be awestruck by the breathtaking scenery of Awaroa Bay as you enjoy a day at leisure at the secluded Awaroa Lodge, where you can dine at the outdoor pizzeria, indulge in a massage at Awaroa Day Spa or take an optional kayaking tour. As your journey nears its end, prepare to be mesmerised by the enchanting golden sands of Waiharakeke Bay and Goat Bay before being transported back to Nelson.
This incredible package includes four nights of lodge accommodation, daily breakfast and three packed lunches that will keep you energised throughout your adventure, all luggage transfers, return transport from Nelson, and so much more.
- Experience three days of self-guided walking on the famous Abel Tasman track, one of New Zealand's Great Walks
- Enjoy free luggage transfers between locations so you only need to carry a day pack
- Explore the beautiful golden sand beaches of Torrent, Anchorage, Waiharakeke and Goat Bay
- Unwind with a day at leisure at the remote Awaroa Lodge in Abel Tasman National Park
- Swim in the clear waters of the beautiful Cleopatra Pool that's surrounded by native ferns
- Cross the iconic Falls River Swing Bridge en route to Bark Bay
- Take a scenic walk along the crescent-shaped Onetahuti Beach
- 4 nights of lodge accommodation in Mārahau and Abel Tasman National Park
- Enjoy daily breakfast and three packed lunches
- All luggage transfers so you only carry a daypack with your lunch
- A map and other information for your walk
- A full briefing from a local expert prior to your self-guided walk
- Return transport from Nelson to Mārahau
- Water taxi transport from Anchorage to Mārahau, Mārahau to Torrent Bay and Totaranui to Mārahau
- Optional Tours: Optional experiences and tours are available to add to your itinerary (see checkout for details)
- Please note: Extra charges may apply. See the Important Info section and checkout cart for fees and details
ItineraryDownload Itinerary Brochure
Today you'll make your own way to the sunniest city in New Zealand, Nelson. Here, a shuttle will meet you at the airport or at one of the pick-up points in the city at 2.30PM. From Nelson, it's almost an hour’s drive to Mārahau through vineyards, fruit orchards and quaint villages. Once in Mārahau you'll check you into your lovely bed and breakfast lodge-style accommodations for the night before booking yourself into one of the local restaurants for your evening meal (dinner not included).
Mārahau is one of two beautiful stepping-off points for the Abel Tasman National Park while the restaurants and cafes are also highly regarded for their excellent food, connection with the land and sea and the warm welcome that they give to visitors. While you're here you can sing karaoke at a cafe, savour local beer at a waterfront beer garden and dive into some of the best burgers in New Zealand that are served straight from a caravan. The Māori meaning of the name Mārahau is 'windy garden' which suggests it was once the site of growing crops although still carries an aura of natural abundance today.
Please note: This is a self-guided tour where assistance is provided to transfer luggage, brief guests on the daily walks and provide luggage transfers.
Overnight: Abel Tasman Lodge or similar, Mārahau
Meals included: None
Walking Distance: 12.4kms (approximately 4 hours)
This morning you'll walk from the accommodation to the aqua taxi base where one of the guides will meet you, hand out your lunch and give you a briefing on your walk before you head off. You will only need to bring a day pack with you as you are returning to the same accommodation. Spend the day hiking, swimming and exploring the forest, the track, and the golden sand beaches on your way to Anchorage. There’s no time pressure today so take your time exploring and admiring in the beautiful scenery before taking the 4.00PM aqua taxi from Anchorage to Mārahau and enjoying a second night at the bed and breakfast lodge-style accommodation in Mārahau.
Please note: See the General Tour Information section for a handy guide on what to pack.
Overnight: Abel Tasman Lodge or similar, Mārahau
Meals included: Breakfast; Lunch
Walking Distance: 17.9kms (approximately 6-7 hours)
After breakfast, take the aqua taxi to Torrent Bay at 9.00AM to continue your Abel Tasman adventure! From this lovely settlement, you'll head up and over to the iconic Falls River swing bridge and further on to Bark Bay. The track then heads up one of the largest ascents on the trip before ending back at sea level at Tonga Quarry. A lovely walk along crescent-shaped Onetahuti Beach follows before the saddle sees you over to the wonderful Awaroa Lodge.
You'll stay overnight at Awaroa Lodge and enjoy dining in their restaurant for both dinner and breakfast (dinner not included).
Overnight: Awaroa Lodge or similar, Abel Tasman National Park
Meals included: Breakfast; Lunch
Today, you can take your time exploring the area on foot or join an optional guided kayak trip.
Optional Activity: Kayak trip $175AUD per person
Kayaking trips are run daily from Awaroa Lodge, starting and finishing at nearby Awaroa Beach. Awaroa is an exciting and dynamic marine environment so the trips are run flexibly to ensure your guide can use their local knowledge of the tides and weather patterns to run the best possible trip. All guided kayak trips last for approximately 3-3.5 hours which includes a pre-trip safety briefing and a 20-30 minute stop on a secluded beach. You'll enjoy interesting commentary at notable points along the way as well as hot drinks and snacks on the beach. No experience is required for this trip however there is a minimum age requirement of 12 years.
Overnight: Awaroa Lodge or similar, Abel Tasman National Park
Meals included: Breakfast
Walking Distance: 8.1kms (approximately 3 hours)
About 30 minutes from Awaroa Lodge is a wide tidal crossing before trekking into a wonderful podocarp forest and bursting out on the golden sand of Waiharakeke Bay and Goat Bay. You'll enjoy the final ascent over to the popular camping spot of Tōtaranui where an aqua taxi will pick you up and cruise past those golden sand beaches to Mārahau. You'll then take land transport to Nelson which departs conveniently from the aqua taxi base at 4.15PM before arriving at Nelson Airport around 5.45PM and Nelson City around 6PM.
Meals included: Breakfast; Lunch
After purchase, you will receive a receipt and a Purchase Confirmation, directing you to an online Passenger Information Form. You must complete the Passenger Information Form within 72 hours of purchase.
Any special requests, preferences and optional extras MUST be clearly stated in your Passenger Information Form. Any change requested after submitting your Passenger Information Form cannot be guaranteed, is strictly subject to availability and will incur surcharges as outlined in the Schedule of Fees below. On purchasing this Travel Offer, you are bound by the General Terms and Conditions and the specific terms and conditions outlined in this Important Information.
Please note: All countries and territories have different entry requirements in relation to vaccinations, quarantine/isolation periods and travel restrictions. Due to the evolving nature, we would ask all of our customers to monitor, meet and adhere to the specific requirements of their intended destination(s) in the lead-up to and immediately before travel, as well as any requirements post-travel upon their return.
Please note: This tour requires a minimum number of passengers to operate and departures are not guaranteed until this minimum number is met. Please refrain from booking travel arrangements such as flights prior to receiving a confirmation email that your departure date has hit minimum numbers and is now guaranteed. This confirmation email will be sent at least 60 days prior to the departure date, and if minimum numbers are not met a date change or refund (in the same form as payment was made) will be offered.
Qantas Tours packages are non-refundable. If your Qantas Tour package is affected by Covid-19 related travel restrictions and you are unable to travel, you will receive either a free date change (credit that is specific to your original package and purchase value) or an open credit less any non-recoverable supplier fees to the value of your original purchase for use on any other Qantas Tour or package available via the TripADeal website.
Please note: Date change credits are subject to availability and not guaranteed until confirmed by TripADeal, not the tour operator you are due to stay with. We recommend you consider purchasing travel insurance with Covid-19 protection. The standard cancellation policy will apply if you cannot travel because you have tested positive for Covid-19.
Please note: All additional charges are payable in AUD (unless otherwise stated).
This travel offer is valid for travel on selected dates until the 9th April 2024.
This travel offer is priced per person based on a twin share.
Single Traveller Supplement
For solo travellers, a mandatory single supplement of $790 applies.
Please note: Accommodation for single customers who are travelling on a tour or cruise package may be in a single room, depending on availability.
October: 10, 17, 24, 31
December: 5, 12
March: 5, 12, 19
April: 2, 9
Please note: See checkout for live dates and availability.
Nelson, New Zealand
Marahau: Abel Tasman Sands B&B, Abel Tasman Lodge or similar
Abel Tasman National Park: Awaroa Lodge or similar
Please note: Accommodation/rooms offered are based on a lead-in room type and are subject to availability based on seasonality. In the instance a property is not available, a similar standard of accommodation will be provided. Properties will be confirmed and included in your travel pack, which you will receive 4-6 weeks before travel.
Maximum Room Capacity
• No child discounts. The full price applies to all children travelling with their parents.
• Valid for Children 8 years old and over.
Please note: Children must be accompanied by a responsible adult 18 years old and over to travel. No unaccompanied minors are allowed.
Twin or double bedding (subject to availability).
Minimum group size 1, maximum group size 20 per vehicle.
Day 4: Optional Activity: Kayak Trip $175 per person
• Prices are based per person, and are subject to availability, time permitting and weather conditions
• The optional tours listed above must be purchased on checkout or over the phone before submitting your passenger information form (subject to availability).
• Some tours or Shore excursions require minimum numbers to operate.
• Visa fees and requirements
• Domestic transfers and flights not stated in the deal offer
• Meals/beverages not stated in the deal offer
• Optional gratuities/tipping
• Optional activities/tours
• Personal expenses
• Travel insurance
CLIMATE & AVERAGE TEMPERATURES
September, October, November
While early Spring can bring rain, average daytime temperatures are mild ranging from 16 – 19°C (61 – 66°F).
December, January, February
Ah, the great Kiwi summer. With average daytime temperatures ranging from 20 – 25°C (68 – 77°F), the Abel Tasman becomes a subtropical paradise.
March, April, May
With average daytime temperatures ranging from 17 – 21°C (62 – 70°F), the weather in early autumn is still mild enough for swimming and other water sports.
SELF-GUIDED TOUR FAQ
Please note: This itinerary is flexible to take advantage of changing weather and road conditions. This itinerary showcases a selection of the key destinations we aim to visit and alternative locations may be visited depending on the departure date.
Are special diets catered for?
We strive to provide great food for all our guests. By providing us with your dietary requirements early on we can inform our catering services and make the necessary arrangements. We have received positive feedback from our guests about the great lengths we have gone to provide delicious food for those requiring special diets. Please note some special dietary requirements may incur small surcharges based on the cost of the ingredients.
You will find established filtered water stations every 10 – 12kms (6 – 7.5 miles) or roughly every 4 hours walking along the Abel Tasman Track. This means you can comfortably walk with a 750ml or 1 litre bottle that you refill along the way. The filtered water stations are located at DoC (Department of Conservation) huts and campsites at Anchorage, Bark Bay, Awaroa, Totaranui and Whariwharangi. All of our accommodations along the track provide clean drinking water as well.
What are the toilet facilities like?
There are many toilets along the track. There are toilets at all campsites and flush toilets every 10 – 12kms (6 – 7.5 miles) or roughly every 4 hours walking that are available to trampers. Smaller campsites have compostable toilets that are often situated a short walk off the main track. Most guests use the flush toilets that are available every 4 hours along the track and plan their day accordingly. It is probably fair to say the flush toilets are nicer to use than the compostable variety and are worth the wait to get to.
How does bad weather affect our trip?
We keep a close eye on weather reports and liaise with DoC (the Department of Conservation) who are responsible for managing the track and keeping us advised of any severe weather situations or closures. Generally speaking, the track is well-maintained and it takes a major weather calamity to occur before DoC will close the track. We do urge our guests to carry on as planned during inclement weather as in New Zealand we do have a saying that “If you don’t like the weather now, wait 10 minutes…” meaning it does change often and quite quickly in some cases. We also find some rain does not reduce the beauty of the area and you do get a real feel of being in something that keeps New Zealand looking beautiful – rain. We also have the unique opportunity to utilise water taxis to take you to the next destination on particularly bad rainy days.
What is the recommended footwear for the track?
This track is regarded as an ‘easy’ track and can be done in running shoes (trainers, sneakers etc) without having to use specialised hiking boots. The track is very well maintained and some of our guests even opt for wearing sports sandals (sandals with support strap across the back of the heel) part way or interchanging with running shoes and sports sandals when needed along the track. We do say to guests with well worn-in hiking boots that they feel comfortable in, that it is perfectly okay to walk the track in these and you’ll see many people on the track in hiking boots. There are a couple of places along the track where you’ll be required to cross tidal estuaries and we strongly recommend the use of water shoes (crocs, sports sandals etc) for these as there are sharp shells and small stones that can cut bare feet. Jandals (flip-flops or thongs) are not recommended as they get bogged down in the muddy parts of the crossing.
What happens to our overnight bags?
These trips include your overnight bag being boated around to your next night’s accommodation. We allow for 1 bag per person of around 10kgs (22 pounds) which are labelled when you check-in at Marahau. The bags are then boated around to your accommodation and await your arrival. This leaves you to walk just with your daypack – containing your lunch, camera, water, sunscreen etc. We do offer luggage storage for those guests with additional luggage – for example, that exceeds the 10kg (22 pounds) limit. We also provide all of our guests with suitably sized duffel bags that you can use for the duration of your trip if you do not have your own. We drop these off to your accommodation the night before your trip so you can pack and be ready for your pick up in the morning.
Is there cell phone coverage and wifi in the Abel Tasman National Park?
There are certain points along the track that you’ll be able to get cell phone coverage – but on the whole, these are few and far between. During the peak summer months one of the cellular networks puts a booster station in Marahau which increases the coverage zone, but again once on the track don’t expect too much coverage. Our guides put their phones on airplane mode to save the battery from going flat too quickly – especially since we can’t always charge our devices at Anchorage and have to use them for two days straight. Wifi is available at Awaroa Lodge and Awaroa Glamping – for heavy usage at these places you’ll have to purchase additional data packages. There are certain points along the track where wifi is available for use with the Abel Tasman App http://www.education.janszoon.org/project-janszoon-park-app/ to get up to date weather reports and tide timetables. We think this is a great app and all our guides have it on their phones and recommend our guests download it too.
Where can I charge my smartphone?
Phone charging can be a bit tricky in the National Park as most of the power generated comes from Solar Panels. This means there is usually only enough power for lighting. There are charging stations at Anchorage Campsite however these are very popular and it is sometimes hard to find a spare spot. Awaroa Lodge and Ratanui Lodge have power points in all their rooms for you to use if you have your own charger.
We recommend putting your phone into flight mode while on the track to save your battery. We also recommend bringing a power bank with you which will allow you to charge your phone while on the track.
Fitness Level Required / Mobility:
A moderate level of fitness will be required. Day walks can be up to 18km long but the terrain is relatively flat. On Day 3 you even have the option to shorten your journey by taking a water taxi transfer from to Bark Bay to begin your days walk. If you have any concerns please consult your healthcare provider prior to purchase/travel.
If you require wheelchair access please contact our friendly sales and service team to inquire on your behalf.
Fitness Level Required:
A moderate level of fitness will be required. Moderate is described as may involve more physical activity, including biking, longer day hikes or extended walking and standing, low-altitude treks, and water-based activities such as canoeing or low-grade kayaking. Guests using any walking aid other than a walking stick would be advised to reconsider as surfaces may be uneven. Day walks can be up to 18km long but the terrain is relatively flat.
Please note: If you have any concerns, please consult your healthcare provider prior to purchase/travel.
A tourist visa is not required if travelling on an Australian passport.
• Please start arranging your visa three weeks before departure to account for any delays due to consulate operating hours.
• Visa rules may have changed since Covid-19. Some countries and airlines may require you to obtain an additional visa before arrival. Please check with the nearest embassy, consulate or immigration department of the destination you're entering.
• Passengers who are not Australian citizens must also check with the respective consulate or visa agency to determine what their visa requirements are and what personal identification is required.
• It is also important to note that some areas of employment, such as journalism, government authorities and charity organisations, may have additional restrictions in applying for Visas. This may, in turn, affect the type of application required.
This includes booking changes requested by you, including but not limited to those changes requiring an airline ticket or a Purchase Confirmation reissue.
• Changes - $100.00 per booking and any additional charges applied by the airline/cruise company/accommodation/other travel providers.
Name Changes Due To Passenger Error
• If the incorrect name has been provided, charges of $100.00 per booking and any additional charges applied by the airline/cruise company/accommodation/other travel providers.
In the event the Qantas Tour you have purchased is unable to proceed, and/or a travel Supplier is unable to fulfil the Qantas Tour due to external circumstances (Limitation of Liability e.g. a Force Majeure event), there may be a fee or amount of money that is withheld by our Suppliers and is unrecoverable. This may be due to non-refundable airline tickets, cancellation penalties with cruise cabins or unrecoverable payments with our land/accommodation partners. If refunds are not available from Suppliers, we will endeavour to obtain a travel credit on the best terms available and communicate these outcomes to you. In the event we are unable to obtain a refund or travel service credit, or part thereof, this cost is passed on to the customer as a Supplier Fee.
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