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🚗 self-drive itinerary

🛏️ minimum 2 night stay recommended

🍽️ dining suggestions offered

📅 visit any time of year


Known for its glittering gold sand beaches, turquoise water and fascinating rock formations, Abel Tasman National Park is a highlight of any visit to New Zealand. Sunny Motueka has a lively cafe culture, while Richmond services the farms, orchards and vineyards of the region.


Highlights can include:

  • jump, slide, abseil and swim on an awesome adventurous canyoning trip along Torrent River or Waterfall Creek with Abel Tasman Canyons 💦
  • drive down the windy access road through pine forest to popular Kaiteriteri Beach, loved for its beautiful golden sand beach and high sunshine hours 🐚
  • spend a couple of hours at family-oriented, interactive Animal Farm - the ultimate hands on farm experience, where you’ll meet 40+ rare breeds in a real farm setting 🐴🐷🐰
  • Wheelie Fantastic provide great cycling tours that showcase this beautiful region on Tasman’s Great Taste Trail - local people with local knowledge make for a great experience 🚴
  • get inspired by the stunning art glass on display at Höglund Art Glass Gallery, a glass-blowing studio showcasing vases, goblets, platters, jewellery and more in beautiful colours 🎨
  • walk the trail through damp forest, clear cold water, tranquil pools, and moss-covered and water-worn marble rock create a fairyland quality at the cave and deep clear pool of Riwaka Resurgence 👟

  • dare to dive up to 16,500 feet with Skydive Abel Tasman, the only dropzone in New Zealand who can show you the mind blowing views of both the North and South Island in a single leap 🛩️

  • mountain bike the flowy trails of Kaiteriteri bike park, or to back country heli-biking missions and the world renowned Wairoa Gorge with Trail Journeys 🚵

  • renowned for its golden beaches, sculptured granite cliffs the Abel Tasman National Park is always a highlight of any visit here, especially when you combine a walk with a kayak adventure 🏞️🛶👟

  • discover the Ngarua Caves with their extensive and breathtaking variety of stalagmites and stalactites and an excellent skeletal display of the large extinct bird - the moa 🔦
  • Harwoods Hole Track leads through beech forest with stunning limestone rock formations framing the track and takes you to the edge of the deepest vertical shaft in New Zealand - don't approach the edge! 👟
  • New Zealand's oldest pub to remain operating in its original building, the Moutere Inn specialises in craft and real ales, quality pub meals and purely local wines 🍺🥂
  • Mapua Wharf is home to a vibrant collection of restaurants, cafés, galleries, stores and attractions - all in a picturesque location overlooking the tide washing in and out 🎣🍽️
  • taking a dip in the tidal Saltwater Baths in Motueka is a very local Kiwi thing to do when you time it right - the reflections making for some great photo opportunities on hot summer days 
  • popular with families Jester House Café has great food and plenty of playful space for kids to roam with their Tame Eels being a highlight for many and you'll have a chance to feed them 🍽️
  • hire a blokarts, and harness the wind to sail on Vortex Wind-Karting's purpose built track in Richmond (currently closed) 🌬️
  • snap a selfie with Split Apple Rock a much-photographed geological wonder that marks the entrance to many adventures in the Abel Tasman National Park 🤳🛶
  • discover Cleopatra's Pool, a natural rock pool with a moss-lined waterslide with clear cool water and a great place for a swim 👟
  • jump aboard a private Gourmet Cruise anchoring at secluded beaches inaccessible by land, stroll at your leisure to the next bay where you’re met on the beach with cold refreshments and a delicious gourmet lunch prepared for your arrival ⛵👟
  • work in unison as a team with Waka Abel Tasman, a truly unique, cultural experience suitable for all ages, a great way to take in the views of the coast and the magic of moving a waka, the Maori canoe 🛶



📍 # of Visitors4.5

🐚 Beaches7.5

🌦️ Chance of Rain3.0

👨‍👩‍👦‍👦 Family Fun 4.5

🛒 Shopping4.0

🍽️ Food + Wine 6.0

🏳️‍🌈 LGBTQI+ friendly 👍

Note: the highest possible score is an 8.0


🎥video courtesy of Ryan Briggs on YouTube


Length of stay
  • Sit back and relax. We've planned it all for you.


    Day 1 : Arrive in Coastal Tasman

    You'll travel to Coastal Tasman today, arriving either by car, coach, or by flying into nearby Nelson Airport. Upon arrival you'll check in to your accommodation, settle in and get acquainted with your surroundings for the next 2 nights.


    This afternoon potter about Mapua Wharf and the charming seaside village shops, or get sidetracked along your way at New Zealand's oldest pub the Moutere Inn sampling tasty craft beer or locally produced wine.  


    If you're feeling active, check out theRiwaka Resurgence walk which leads to an incredibly fairytale-like crystal clear pool, or take a short drive down the windy road to beautiful Kaiteriteri Beach for those that want a glimpse into tomorrow.


    Day 2 : explore the beaches and bays of a coastal paradise

    A highlight to any visit to this region is the Abel Tasman National Park, which has some awesome adventures on offer, combining sailing, walking, kayaking, cruising or even canyoning for the more adventurous.


    The best way to explain this very special place, is to ask Google to bring up some photos in a quick search.  The green lush forest really does make its way right to the beach, and the sand really is that colour.


    You could easily spend days here, but when you've only got one, Split Apple Rock is always a favourite for photo's - and you can get here in a very unique way - why not paddle a maori canoe, or waka with Waka Abel Tasman.  


    Cleopatra's Pool is another favourite, a natural water slide that can be hours of fun, and is just a short detour off the main coastal track.


    Whatever you've ended up doing with your day, celebrate your last night in this region at one of our favourite restaurants in the area. 


    Day 3 : Depart Coastal Tasman

    This morning get up close to the Tame Eels at Jester House Café making sure you delight your tastebuds with an organic treat or something from their delicious menu before continuing on to the visual delights found at Höglund Art Glass Gallery.  We'll let you know the best way to get from this region to the next part of your New Zealand trip, wherever you want that to be.