OTHER WALKS & TRAMPS, NEAR NELSONAbel Tasman and Golden Bay walks

Abel Tasman area walks

Abel Tasman National Park

No trip to the Nelson region (or New Zealand for that matter) would be complete without experiencing the Abel Tasman National Park.  New Zealand's smallest and most visited National Park is world famous for it's golden sands, sub-tropical forests and deep blue-green sea.  Several options are available to cater for different requirements and time restraints, including the very popular Abel Tasman Coast Track. Grade: Easy Time: from 2 hrs to 5 days

Guided WalksNelson Accommodation for Abel Tasman.jpg

Abel Tasman National Park, Kahurangi National Park. Dodson Road, RD1, Takaka. (03) 525 7177  Enjoy all the advantages and safety of a guided walk. Your guides will share their extensive knowledge of New Zealand’s special plants, birds, geology, bush craft and local history. They supply lunch on day trips and all food on multi-day walks. They pick up and deliver within Golden Bay for day trips, and Nelson for multi-day walks.

One Day Park Walk

Join Wilson’s 9.30am Vista Cruise to Bark Bay, then walk the coastal track 6 hours to Marahau - OR - Join Wilson’s 9.30am cruise to Anchorage, then walk 4 hours along the most scenic section of track back to Marahau. Catch the 4pm or 5.30pm coach if required.

Track Walkers Abel Tasman

3-step - Decide to do the walk, buy your Hut or Camp Pass, Pay only $34 for your boat ticket to any Bay. Coach to Kaiteriteri from Nelson, Motueka or Marahau. Enjoy a fascinating introduction to the region, cruising the spectacular coast and catching a tantalising glimpse of the track. Stop at the bay of your choice and take as many days as you like, walking back to Marahau where you car awaits, or catch the coach from Marahau at 8.30am, 12.50pm, 4pm or 5.30pm.

Wilsons Abel Tasman National Park

Walk, Boats, Lodges Freephone 0800 223 582


Nelson Lakes / St Arnaud

Department of Conservation Visitor Information Centre

Open daily from 8.00am to 4.30pm with extended hours in summer. Park information, Backcountry hut tickets, Displays and audio visual, Rotoiti Nature Recovery Programme.
St Arnaud Area Office, Department of Conservation, View Road, St Arnaud. Phone: (03) 521 1806

Green Arena Guided Walks 

Phone: (03) 548 1728 email: greenarenaguidedwalks@gmail.com
Join us for guided day walks in the stunning surroundings of the Nelson Lakes National Park. Your guides live locally and have a thorough knowledge of the area, conservation and the local wildlife. Enjoy lunch time picnics and great photo opportunities. We look forward to walking with you soon!

Licensed Water Taxi and Hire Service

Phone: (03) 521 1894 Email: watertaxi@clear.net.nz 
An on demand service personalised to your requirements. Transport for those enjoying the tranquil lakeside day walks, or those on expeditions such as tramping, mountaineering, hunting & fishing.

Southern Wilderness - Guided Walks

Phone: (03) 578 4531 Freephone: 0800 266 266 (NZ Only) Email: info@southernwilderness.com
Top of the South guided walk specialists, Southern Wilderness NZ, offer two popular guided walk packages in the Nelson Lakes National Park. These glacial-formed valleys contain the most beautiful azure blue lakes surrounded by magnificent alpine beech forest and soaring mountain tops.

Anglers Walk, 1 hr

This walk begins by the Buller Bridge in West Bay. The track follows the river bank where there are several good spots for fishing. This walk makes a pleasant extension to the Moraine Walk, and the circuit can be completed by returning along State Highway 63.



Nelson Lakes 
walks at Nelson  MotelsBellbird Walk, 15 min.

This is one of the walks developed to showcase the Rotoiti Nature Recovery Project
area. The track has been built to wheel chair standard pathway standard. Begin at the car park near the east jetty at Kerr Bay. Allow 10 minutes walking time for this short walk, and longer if you want to read the six interpretation panels along the way . The Rotoiti Nature Recovery Project is one of the Department of Conservation’s major projects, which aims to create a sanctuary with fewer pests.

Black Hill Walk, 1 hr 30 min.

This walk begins at the Rotoiti Lodge and climbs through beech forest and stands of manuka and kanuka onto Black Hill. Black Hill is a solid mound of volcanic rock that resisted the erosive powers of past glaciers. Near the top is a clearing from which Lake Rotoiti, St Arnaud and Big Bush can be viewed. The track descends steeply to the highway and follows it back to the Rotoiti Lodge Road

Black Valley Walk, 30 min.

This walk starts at Kerr Bay and follows the Black Valley Stream through beech forest. The walk runs parallel to State Highway 63, and has three entry/exit points along the way that lead off to the Rotoiti Chapel, the village store and to Bridge Street.

Braeburn Walk, 2 hr return

The Braeburn Walk leads through a diverse remnant of beech-podocarp forest, rich in bird life, along a wide and well-graded track to a picturesque mossy waterfall. The track starts from the Braeburn Road, 200 metres from the Gowan Bridge.

Flowers Walk, 15 min.

This short walk is located at the northern end of the Lake, between the Lake foreshore and the outlet. Flowers Walk commences to the right of the car park and jetty and passes through a stand of Kahikatea dominated podocarp/beech forest before following around the Lake outlet to the beginning of the Gowan River.

Honeydew Walk, 45 min.

This walk is accessed by first walking part of the Bellbird Walk which begins at the car park near the east jetty at Kerr Bay. There are 10 interpretation panels along the way (including the Bellbird Walk panels) that provide information on the Rotoiti Nature Recovery Project. Allow 35 minutes walking time for this as well as 10 minutes to read the 10 interpretation panels along the way.

Lake Rotoiti Circuit, 6- 9 hr return

The track begins in Kerr Bay, and continues along the Lakehead Track around the eastern shore, reaching Lakehead Hut after about 3 hours walking. You may be able to cross here to follow the route to Coldwater Hut, depending on the height of the Travers River; otherwise there is a swing bridge located 1.5 hours further up the Travers Valley. From Coldwater Hut at the lake edge, the track returns along the Lakeside Track, passing by Whisky Falls and then continues on to the Mount Robert Road and West Bay. Beech forest towers over a carpet of vivid green mosses and ferns for much of the walk. In summer, beautiful red rata flowers are a visual treat. A rare stand of rimu trees can be seen on the eastern shore, about two-thirds of the way to Lakehead Hut. Tuis and Bellbirds are the most numerous and vocal birds encountered along this walk, and you may encounter native insectivorous forest birds as well, such as the fantail, tomtit and bush robin. If you are fortunate, you may also hear or sight the noisy kaka (forest parrot) along the way.

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Loop Track, 1 hr 30 min.

This walk will take you well into the Rotoiti Nature Recovery Project area. Starts with the Bellbird track, before turning left to follow the St Arnaud Range/Loop track. From here, the track loops back on to the Lakehead track which returns to the car park.

Moraine Walk, 1 hr 30 min.

This walk begins at the junction of State Highway 63 and the Rotoiti Lodge Road. The moraine walk winds around the base of Black Hill, over piles of moraine debris left by the ancient Travers Glacier and past kettle ponds created when blocks of ice surrounded by glacial gravel melted away. The forest type along this walk is predominately manuka and kanuka. The walk goes through the West Bay campground and on to the Buller River.


St Arnaud Range Track, 5 hr return

The track begins in the eastern corner of Kerr Bay, and climbs steadily through beech forest to a height of over 1650 metres. Above the bushline, there are spectacular views from Parachute Rocks, (named because of

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a gravel screen located just to the north which is in the shape of a parachute). The track climbs from here tothe ridge line, where you can look out across alpine tarns and basins to the Wairau Valley beyond. Higher still are alpine herbfields, which will treat you to a glorious display of gold and white when the herbs flower in late spring and early summer.

Mount Robert, 5 hr return

This loop track takes you around the northern face of Mount Robert. You can start this walk from either the Pinchgut Track, which begins at the Mount Robert car park, or Paddy’s Track, which starts 500 metres before the Pinchgut Track on the Mount Robert Road. The Pinchgut Track zigzags up the steep, bare face of Mount Robert on a well graded track before entering beech forest. Bush Edge Shelter is located where forest gives way to alpine herbs and shrubs. From here, the track continues across the open ridge top. Alternatively, the walk can be started using Paddy’s track, which cuts across the mountain’s open face and crosses several scree-filled gullies, before climbing to Bushline Hut. To complete the circuit, a track across the ridge top links both Pinchgut and Paddy’s Tracks.

Peninsula Nature Walk, 1 hr 30 min.

Beginning at the west side of Kerr Bay, this walk follows the peninsula around to West Bay, crossing the Alpine fault twice, and returning via Baxter Street and View Road. For a longer walk, (2½ hrs) continue to the next junction and turn right, returning to Kerr Bay via Rotoiti Lodge. This walk has a good variety of native plants and several easy access points to the lake shore.

Porika Lookout Track, 1½ or 3 hr return

The Porika Lookout Track heads up onto the northern end of the Muntz Range, which runs along the eastern side of Lake Rotoroa. From here, a spectacular view can be gained of the Lake and the surrounding bush-clad, bare-topped mountain ranges. The Track begins at the parking area on the road which branches left, after passing the Rotoroa Lodge. Alternatively, begin at the picnic area and walk a short way (10 minutes) along the Lakeside Track then take the Short Loop Track to meet the Porika Track. This option passes through a delightful area of mixed beech-podocarp forest with an impressive variety of ferns, mosses, shrubs and tall forest trees.
@Soon after leaving the parking area, the four wheel drive track, which is used to service the power transmission lines, climbs steeply through the beech forest in a series of zigzags to the lookout points.
@For a more interesting round trip, the walk over the historic Porika Track, which branches off to the left after about 15 to 20 minutes, is the recommended option. Allow about 3 hours for the longer round trip and 1½ hours for the shorter return walk on the four wheel drive track.

Short Loop Track, 25 min.

This track starts at the picnic area near the Lake and proceeds along the Lakeside Track for about 10 minutes before branching off to the left onto the loop section. It returns to the picnic area via the start of the Porika Track. The gentle nature of this ramble is a botanists delight. Of all the short walks in the park, this one contains the greatest variety of tall forest trees, shrubs, climbing vines mosses and particularly ferns. Here, the beech/podocarp forest found around the Lake is at its most diverse.
@Near the beginning of the walk, on the forest floor and along the edge of the stream are many different

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fern species. The large size of the attractive hen and chicken fern (Asplenium bulbiferum) indicates a very favourable growing site. The fern derives its name from the tiny plants or bulbils that sprout from the fronds.


The bulbils are capable of growing into new plants if they make contact with the ground. It is likely that the hen and chicken fern was once more widespread around Rotoroa but severe browsing has eliminated it from other areas.


Whisky Falls, 5 hr return

Take the Lakeside Track from the Mount Robert road and head along the western shore of the lake. The track will take you through forests of manuka/kanuka and then lead into beech. There are several shingle fans to cross before reaching Whisky Falls. The falls are almost 40 metres high and thick walls of moss and ferns thrive in the damp atmosphere. The falls were named Whisky Falls as the remains of an illicit still were found here in the 1880’s.

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Golden Bay area walks

Pupu Hydro Walkway

Many people contend that this, Golden Bay’s first official walkway, is the number one walk in Golden Bay. The return walk is at the end of the Waikoropupu Valley Road, 9km west of Takaka. At the Y intersection on the valley road take the right fork - the left fork goes to the springs. There is, they say, a wider range of interests - scenery, history, plant life, engineering ingenuity - crammed into this half day round trip than anywhere else locally. The road up the Pupu Valley forks about a kilometre in from the highway and a signpost directs you to the right. A sometimes narrow unsealed road brings you to a car park at the head of the valley, then its on with the daypack (morning tea, a picnic lunch, maybe, a parka if showers threaten.

The Heaphy Track

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Located in Kahurangi National Park at the north-west corner of the South Island, is the longest of the DOC Great Walks. For 78.4 kilometres the track crosses the Park’s range of landscapes, starting from the junction of the Brown and Aorere Rivers, over expansive tussock downs to the lush forests, nikau palms and roaring seas of the West Coast. The track is well formed and suitable for fit, well-equipped people. All rivers and major streams are bridged. The track takes four to six days to walk. There are huts and campsites where you can stay for a fee. Bookings are required.

Wainui Falls

Grade:1 - 2 Time: One hour 15 minutes return Access: The carpark is 20km from Takaka on the road towards Totaranui. Turn right at the signpost just past Wainui Inlet.


Buller / Murchison area walks

Kahurangi National Park

Covering 400,000ha of wilderness, Kahurangi is an ecological treasure with more than 100 bird species, 50% of all New Zealand's plant species and 80% of the country's alpine plants.
Operators include @Kahurangi Guided Walks@, featuring the Heaphy Track, Chaffey Cottage, Aorere Goldfields and Cobb Valley.


Marlborough area walks

Encompassing one-sixth of New Zealand’s total coastline, the wild and majestic Marlborough Sounds are one of the South Island’s most prized possessions. Made up of four main waterways - the Queen Charlotte Sound, Pelorus Sound, Kenepuru Sound and Mahau Sound, the recreational opportunities this area offers are endless. The Marlborough Sounds provide an unspoilt wilderness to enjoy an array of maritime pursuits such as sailing, fishing, diving, sea kayaking and viewing marine life. Aside from the obvious water activities that the Marlborough Sounds have to offer, there are also many on-land activities to take advantage of. Tramping or mountain biking the famous Queen Charlotte Track are two of the best ways to see the Sounds.

Easy access short walks

Getting there - The reserve is located midway between Blenheim and Nelson on State Highway 6, 18km west of Havelock.

About the area

From the car parks on either side of State Highway 6, the main paths in the reserve explore the forest and riverbanks. They are wide and gentle, built to a standard suitable for wheelchairs. Beyond these paths, and across the Rai swing bridge there are several other tracks. 

Totara Path

Pelorus Bridge Scenic Reserve

Totara Walk - 30 min

From the car park/picnic area an easy path loops through forest with a mixture of podocarp, broadleaf and beech trees. Pause for a moment to appreciate the ancient totara tree along the path and look for the honeydew on the beech trees.

River Access - 5 min

A short walk, branching off the Totara Path, leads down to the river.

Circle Walk - 45 min

The Circle Track begins as an easy stroll alongside the Pelorus. The wheelchair-standard path overlooks the river. Further along, the river builds a beach as it sweeps around a bend. The path leads to a suspension bridge across the Rai River, just before it feeds into the Pelorus.
Beyond the swing bridge the walk becomes a tramping track and makes a loop through a pocket of forest. For part of its length the track follows the river, providing good views of its junction with the Rai.
The Circle Walk has short stretches with steps and moderate gradients but is otherwise flat.

Elvy Waterfalls Track - 2 hr return

This tramping track offers the opportunity to view two picturesque waterfalls, along streams that feed into the Pelorus River. The track branches off the Tawa Path and wanders along the bank of the river for most of its length, before turning up Elvy Stream. Access to the first waterfall requires a stream crossing so care should be taken during wet weather. Return via the same track or continue on to Trig K.

Trig K Track - 4 hr return

Beginning of Tawa Walk

Superb views of the surrounding countryside reward those who climb to Trig K. In one direction the tramping track leading up to it continues on from the waterfall track, passing through mature and regenerating beech forest on a dry ridge. The other, shorter approach climbs through lusher podocarp-broadleaf forest.

Tawa Walk - 30 min

A gentle path from the cafe takes you through shady forest to explore river terraces left by the Pelorus River over thousands of years. 

Queen Charlotte Track - 71km (4 days and 3 nights)

This track will get you out into the great outdoors and close to nature through some of New Zealand’s most stunning native bush overlooking the Marlborough Sounds. The track can be experienced in pieces as a one day walk using Picton as a base or there is a range of accommodation to suit everyone along the way from a DOC campsite to a five star lodge. The track is more accessible to families as your packs are all transferred ahead of you.

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