Add 15 kms walking to include the spectacular Wainui inlet in Golden Bay. Sea kayaking options available.
Day 1: Nelson/Motueka to Awaroa via Wainui
Join our coach service from Nelson, or self-drive to meet us in Motueka.
In Motueka, board our coach to take in the panoramic views on the drive over the Takaka Hill to Wainui.
Walk self-guided along the isolated northern section of the Coastal Track through groves of Nikau palms and along secluded golden-sand beaches. The track from Wainui to Totaranui is well-marked and easy to follow.
If you have chosen the guided walk option, meet your guide at Tōtaranui to walk through mature native forest and along secluded beaches to the breathtaking expanse of Awaroa Inlet where you’ll reach Meadowbank Homestead – a faithful recreation of the Wilson family's original home on the ‘finest site in the bay’.
Approximate times and distances
Scenic drive to Wainui – 2 hours from Nelson, or 1 hour 20 mins from Motueka
Walk Wainui to Tōtaranui - 4.5 hours (15.5kms/10 miles)
Walk Tōtaranui to Awaroa – 2 hours 30 min (9km/5.5 miles) including tidal crossing; maximum elevation 100m/340ft
Accommodation: Meadowbank Homestead at Awaroa
Meals included: lunch, afternoon tea, dinner
Pick up in Nelson: from 6am
Pick in Motueka: from 7am
If you are self-driving please meet at our office by 7.30am
7.30am Welcome briefing with time for last-minute luggage organisation, before departing to Wainui by coach.
10.00am Start your Walk from Wainui
2.40pm Arrive at Tōtaranui.
Walk to the Awaroa Inlet. Continue the walk across the inlet if the tide is out, or a barge transfer will be arranged for you if the tide is in.
5.00pm (approx.) Enjoy a warm welcome at Meadowbank Homestead at Awaroa, right on the edge of the inlet. Freshen up with a hot shower in your ensuite room while your hosts prepare a delicious evening meal. Local beer and wine is available for purchase at our in-house bar.
Day 2: Awaroa to Torrent Bay
Your walk and/or kayak today includes shady forest walks and golden sand beaches ideal for swimming. Your guides/hosts will arrange boat transfers so you can choose how much walking suits you.
Start with a relaxing breakfast overlooking Meadowbank’s gardens and the beautiful waters beyond, then walk from Awaroa to Onetahuti where kayakers and walkers split into separate groups for their journey to Torrent Bay.
Approximate times and distance
Walk Awaroa to Onetahuti and Tonga Quarry, 2 hours – 8km/5 miles; maximum elevation 85m/280ft
Walk Tonga Quarry to Bark Bay (Medlands Beach) 2 hours – 5km/3 miles; maximum elevation 120m/400ft
Walk Bark Bay to Torrent Bay 2 hours – 7km/4.4 miles; maximum elevation 105m/340ft
Kayak Onetahuti through Tonga Island Marine Reserve to Torrent Bay 4 hours - 10km/6 miles
Accommodation: Torrent Bay Lodge
Meals included: breakfast, morning & afternoon tea, lunch, dinner
Trip Details Walking:
9.30am Depart Awaroa for the scenic walk to Onetahuti, which features a beautiful boardwalk and bridge designed by local iwi (Māori tribe). Stroll along the golden sands and enjoy refreshments supplied by your guide.
11.30am Before climbing the low saddle out of Onetahuti, explore the site of Tonga Quarry and hear stories of the unusual granite features and historic relics. Descend to Bark Bay via the waterfall trail featuring views of the cascade from a sturdy swing bridge.
1.30–2.30pm Relax over lunch at Bark Bay where DOC campsite facilities include shelter, picnic tables, and modern toilets. Rest in the shade, explore the bay or refresh with a swim. After lunch, you’ll walk the most varied section the coastal track as it winds through verdant gullies of mature beech forest, fern grottos and sunny groves of fragrant manuka framing coastal vistas. Cross the swing bridge at Falls River and continue to Torrent Bay.
Trip Details Kayaking:
9.30am Walk from Awaora to Onetahuti to meet your kayak guide
11.00am After full instructions and safety brief, it's on to the water to explore Tonga Island Marine Reserve and the hidden coves and islands along the golden coast.
Around midday, stop for lunch at a sheltered beach with time for relaxing or swimming, then continue on to Torrent Bay.
4.30pm (approx.) Arrive at beautiful Torrent Bay with its village of beachfront holiday houses including our Torrent Bay Lodge where your ensuite room and evening meal awaits.
Day 3: Torrent Bay to Kaiteriteri/Motueka/Nelson
Wake up to golden light on the sands of Torrent Bay and perhaps a coffee on the deck before breakfast. Today’s walk follows the easiest section of the coastal track through to Marahau. Walkers and kayakers are treated to panoramic views across Tasman Bay to Nelson.
Approximate times and distances
Walk Torrent Bay to Marahau 4-5 hours (depending on tides) – 13-16km/8-10 miles; maximum elevation 110m/360ft
Kayak Torrent Bay to Kaiteriteri – 4.5 hours (12km)
Scenic drive from Marahau/Kaiteriteri – 20 min to Motueka or 1 hr to Nelson
Meals included: breakfast, morning & afternoon tea, lunch
Trip Details Walking
9am Depart Torrent Bay Lodge. The tides will determine whether you walk around the inlet taking in views overlooking Anchorage Beach, or take the fun short-cut across the inlet to reach the main coastal track.
12 noon (approx.) Stop for lunch at a sheltered beach with views over the Astrolabe Roadstead to Adele Island.
2.30–3pm Finish your leisurely walk at Mārahau, at the end of coastal track. Here, our driver meets you for the return journey to Motueka via Kaiteriteri where you collect your overnight luggage from the boat.
Trip Details Kayaking
9am Depart Torrent Bay to explore the hidden coves and granite islands of the Astrolabe Roadstead. Find a sheltered golden beach for a lunch break, then continue on to Kaiteriteri.
3.30pm (approx) Arrive on the golden sands of Kaiteriteri beach with time to relax before joining our coach for your return to Motueka/Nelson
4pm Arrive Motueka
5.30–6pm: Arrive Nelson
Other important information
- we reserve the right to alter itineraries, timetables and vessel types
- all travel is subject to weather and tides which may cause delay or cancellation