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3 Day Kayak & Walk

FAQ

Is there WiFi or cellphone reception?

Disconnect for a real wilderness experience, but if you are unable to travel technology-free, WiFi and cellphone coverage is limited.

Cellphone coverage can be found on headlands or high points in line-of-site to transmission points. Coverage varies depending on your service provider. Check coverage maps for Vodafone and/or Spark.

Project Janzoon WiFi hotspots are found at:

  • Marahau park entrance
  • Anchorage campground
  • Torrent Bay Lodge
  • Bark Bay hut and campground
  • Meadowbank Homestead at Awaroa
  • Totaranui

Project Janszoon is a charitable trust set up to restore the environment. Use of their WiFi network requires a NZ$5 donation, payable by credit card.

Before going into the park, we recommend downloading the Project Janszoon App, with fascinating stories about the environment and history of Abel Tasman National Park.

When is the best time to travel?

Abel Tasman National Park is a great place to visit any time. We have the highest number of sunshine hours in New Zealand, year round and rainfall is evenly distributed throughout the year. Most NZ trees are evergreen, so our native forest is colourful in all seasons and temperatures are mild year-round. 

Average air temperatures and rainfall through the year

  Mean Daily
Max. Temps (°C/°F)
Mean Daily
Min. Temps (°C/°F)
Average Rain
Days (>1mm)
Summer (Dec/Jan/Feb) 22/72 13/55 6
Autumn (Mar/Apr/May) 18/64 8/46 8
Winter (Jun/Jul/Aug) 13/55 3/37 10
Spring (Sept/Oct/Nov) 17/63 7/45 10

Our busiest time is January/February but outside of these times the park is just as spectacular. During our cooler months (April - September), days are often sunny and calm. This is the best time for photography and viewing the wildlife. 

Our beachfront lodges have cosy fires in the living areas, and are centrally heated, so you can relax in comfort, year-round.

Coach Pick up/Drop offs

Let us know where you're staying the night before your trip with us so. We pick up from the main accommodation providers in Nelson city, and along Highway 60 between Nelson and Motueka. 

Nelson has many wonderful B&Bs and private homes located in the hills around Nelson. It is not possible to access all of these properties and provide a timely service that suits all guests' travel itineraries. Please note pick up for Mapua is on Highway 60 at the junction with Mapua Drive.

For most departures we pick up at Nelson Airport if you arrive before 10 am. The exception is trips with early departure: most Wednesdays and all trips outside of daylight savings time (end of September to start of April).

Go to Multiday Coach Pickup for a Google Map showing pick up and drop off points around Nelson.

On the last day of your trip, our driver returns you to accessible locations in Motueka and Nelson, including Nelson Airport for flights departing after 6.30 pm.

What happens to my luggage?

We give you a complimentary lodge luggage bag for overnight gear to be transported to our lodges by boat. Bring your own day pack if you like, or borrow one of our specially designed 30 litre day packs, available at our office.

We have secure storage at our office for excess baggage. If you are staying at the same accommodation when you return from your trip, you may find it more convenient to store luggage there.

Click here for details and dimensions of your complimentary lodge luggage bag.

Packing for your trip
The start of your trip is more enjoyable if you pack as much as possible before your pick up.

Let us know where you are staying the night before your trip with us. We can deliver your lodge luggage bag to main accommodation providers in Nelson city and Motueka.

If delivery is not possible, or you are flying into Nelson on the day your trip starts, your lodge luggage bag will be available at our office. To arrange your luggage with ease and speed at the office please separate into two bags:

  1. Overnight gear in one bag ready to transfer into your lodge luggage bag.
  2. If you wish to borrow a day pack, have the day’s requirements separated into a small bag.

For more details, download our Pre-Trip Welcome Information (PDF file) or go to our What to Bring Pages:

Guided Multiday Trip What to Bring.

Self-Guided Multiday Trip What to Bring.

 

What's the difference between southbound and northbound trips?

Abel Tasman National Park is spectacular from any direction.

Most of our trips travel southbound. To give you more choice of departure days, with our exclusive lodges hosting small groups, most Wednesday departures (and occasionally other departures) travel northbound.

The only difference you will notice is that northbound trips depart a little earlier on the first day (7.30 am from Nelson) so that kayakers reach sheltered waters before the afternoon sea breeze picks up.

Do you charge extra for solo traveller?

We welcome solo travellers. No extra charge if you can share a room with a person of the same gender.

To guarantee a single room we charge and additional 50% on standard rate during high season.

During shoulder seasons (1-31 October, 20-31 January or 1-30 April) the single supplement is standard rate plus 30%.

How hard is the kayaking?

The Abel Tasman is renowned for its protected coastline but it's impossible to guarantee conditions in the marine environment. When sea and weather are calm, sea kayaking is easy and very little skill or strength is required.

Double kayaks are used for stability, enjoyment and the advantage of having two people sharing the paddling effort.

You need to be prepared for variable conditions in the outdoors. Sometimes, you might have to paddle against the wind to the nearest beach. Our qualified Guides are trained to reduce the chance of this, and assist if needed.

Guides provide full training and, if their instructions are followed, kayaking is safe and fun. Our boat crew provides full back-up so if kayaking becomes too difficult through the day you can leave your kayak at a beach and walk or take the boat.

If you're worried about the weather for your day trip, please click through to Kayak Day Trip Cancellation Conditions.

For a multiday trip with us, kayaking each day is optional and you're welcome to join the walking group or catch a boat if you're not enjoying the kayaking. For a gentle introduction to kayaking, our 5-Day Walk can include a taste of kayaking in the sheltered lagoons close to our lodges (no special booking or extra charge required).

What happens to my car?

If you self-drive to our Motueka office on the morning of departure, please meet at the time indicated on your itinerary and we will direct you to parking for the duration of your time in the national park.

Parking is off-street but not secured. Please do not leave valuables in your car. There is lock-up storage at our Motueka Office.

We provide coach transfers from most accommodation places in Nelson and Motueka.

Can I kayak if I can't swim?

We provide buoyancy vests so swimming ability is not essential.

If you follow your guide's instructions, it is highly unlikely that you will fall out of your kayak. If this does happen, your buoyancy vest will keep you afloat and your guide will safely rescue you.