Explore the 12 golden beaches of the Astrolabe area.

The forest-fringed Astrolabe offers the highest concentration of golden sandy beaches in the Abel Tasman to explore.

The highlight of this trip is visiting Adele Island sanctuary, home to an array of protected native birds and a popular hangout for NZ Fur Seals. Experience the cacophony of bird sound that is unique to the Island. It’s a beautiful day for those with only one day to spare. Our tip: if you can squeeze in an overnight stay, upgrade to the 2 day freedom hire it’s truly magic spending a night in the park.

  • Start & finish at Marahau.
  • Fully explore the Astrolabe area at your own pace.
  • Paddle out to Adele & Fisherman Islands and listen to the birdsong.
  • Know that choosing this trip means a portion of your trip cost helps protect the birds.
  • Drift into caves on a high tide.
  • Stop in at Watering Cove and walk up the coastal track to experience the spectacular views of the Astrolabe and the Northern part of the park.
  • On your return paddle revisit your favourite spots or explore the ones you missed on the way North.

We also offer the option of a water taxi return if you wish to paddle one way to Anchorage, we recommend this for competent outdoors people.

Minimum group size 2 (no solo hires).

Price

$110pp

Duration

1 Day

  • Check-in: 8.15 am (1 Oct – 30 Apr) 9.00 am (1 May – 30 Sep)
  • Open:

    1 Sept –  30 June

  • Age: Minimum 14 years, under the age of 18 you need to be accompanied by an adult on a 1 to 1 ratio
  • Includes: Kayak hire
  • Food: Lunch can be provided for $20pp or bring your own
  • Paddling: Approximately 4 hours interspersed with breaks. No prior experience required
  • Water Taxi: No water taxi cruises
  • Bus: $70 Nelson return, $30 Motueka return operating 1 Oct – 30 Apr. On request outside of these times
  • Base Map

Adele Island Bird Sanctuary

Adele Island / Motuareronui is a predator free sanctuary and home to species such as the South Island Robin/Toutouwai (pictured) and Saddleback/Tieke.

NZ Fur Seal/Kekeno

NZ fur seals Kekeno can be found at the northern end of the island.

Seal - Abel Tasman Kayaks

Astrolabe

Paddle the sheltered waters of the Astrolabe exploring 12 beautiful beaches, caves, rocky outcrops and islands.

No rental kayaking past this point (Shag Harbour)

Hug the coastline and paddle through caves and rocky outcrops on a high tide.

The Park For all Seasons

Departure Times

Your trip includes an Environmental Access Fee which goes directly towards preserving the Abel Tasman National Park.

Risk Disclosure: For an understanding of the potential risks please click here and read before you book.

Itinerary

  • 8.15am
    Check in and start your kayak rental briefing. The briefing highlights areas of interest in the Abel Tasman National Park, weather forecasts and local conditions, hazards, safety and
    self rescue.
    10.00am
    On water assessment with guide.
  • 10.00am
    On water assessment with guide.
    10.30am
    Continue on your own to explore the Astrolabe.
  • 4.00pm
    Return to Abel Tasman Kayaks' base.

*Please note this is an estimate of timings base on a 8.15am check-in.

What to bring

Please bring personal water bottle, hat, sunscreen, insect repellent, towel, swimsuit, warm top (wool or fleece), wind jacket, a change of clothes, cameras and any medication.

We Provide

A double kayak, buoyancy vest, spray skirt, paddle jacket, paddle, safety emergency flares, waterproof map, water pump and a spare paddle. Additional items in the winter: wetsuits, wetsuit booties.

FAQS

  • Can we hire/rent single kayaks?

    No. Due to the safety procedures in place, you cannot hire or rent single kayaks. The exception is if your group size is an odd number where there will be one single kayak provided along with double kayaks. E.g For a group of 3 – 1 x double kayak, and 1 x single kayak, group of 5 – 2 x double kayaks and 1 x single kayak.

  • Environment Access Fee

    Your trip includes an Environmental Access Fee which goes directly towards preserving the Abel Tasman National Park.

    A portion of your ticket price goes directly towards preserving the unique environment you will enjoy on your trip in the Abel Tasman. This includes the compulsory concession fees paid to the Department of Conversation as well as voluntary contributions to local organisations and projects to improve the environment, ecology and access to the National Park.  Fees are adjusted according to your trip, you can see your contribution when you purchase a ticket.

    Find out more on how we are looking after this special place including our commitment to the Mārahau Pledge.

  • What is the minimum age for renting a kayak?

    Rental customers need to be 14+ and anyone under the age of 18 needs to be accompanied by an adult.

  • Is food included?

    All kayak rentals & kayak & walk rentals are self catered (unless you have opted to add lunch for day 1 at time of booking) the trip description provides suggestions of meals. Be sure to bring enough food for your whole journey, food tips can be found here. We recommend purchasing this before you get to Marahau. Make sure you bring plenty of fresh water with you. Filtered water is available at our base and hut sites, untreated water is available at the campsites.  

     

  • If I am on my own can I rent a kayak?

    It’s possible to join a guided trip if you’re a solo traveller. We will pair you with another guest or a guide. No rentals are available to solo kayakers due to safety.

  • Do I need any previous kayaking experience to rent a kayak?

    While past kayaking experience is desirable, a reasonable level of camping and outdoor skills and water confidence is essential. Before you go out on a kayaking trip you are briefed by a qualified sea kayak guide who is very familiar with the park and will provide you with information about places to go, how far you are likely to get in the time you have and information on safety, weather and sea conditions.

  • Do you hire camping gear?

    Yes, from gas bottles to a full set of gear. It can be booked online at time of booking or over the phone a full list can be found here. These items are subject to availability.

  • More FAQ’s

    A full list of our FAQ’s can be found here.

What our customers say

My partner and I got a day-hire kayak for 90pp. I couldn't recommend Abel Tasman Kayaks any higher. There was a thorough safety briefing before the day started and they kitted us out with all the equipment that we needed. The team was great at pointing out where it would be feasible to kayak for a day trip. Kayaking in the bays was great as well, lots of small private... read more


BrianY853

We rented a kayak for a day. Amber, who was very professional and friendly, gave us a safety demonstration and showed us routes to go. Kayaks were in great condition and the scenery was amazing. We saw seals and one swam under the kayak!


LF363

#ABELTASMANKAYAKS

Low tide crossing at stunning Awaroa Estuary.
Koro (Grandfather) and Kuia (Grandmother) our water taxi names reflect our desire to share and tell stories of the Abel Tasman.  The Abel Tasman National Park may have been gazetted as a national park in 1942 but its history dates back at least 700 years.
Beachside camping ❤
Even Weka can't resist a stunning sunrise! 🌅 Also known as the Māori hen or woodhen, Weka are the most common flightless birds in the Abel Tasman National Park.
Mother Nature showcasing a stunning palette of colors! 🌈
Smooth landing! perfect landing 👌 🚣‍♂️
Accessible and stunning coastline! 💖 Abel Tasman
Discovering the various lagoons and estuaries along the coastline, each with its own unique features.😊
Paddling during shoulder season: crisp, clear days and fewer crowds. 🚣‍♂️☀️ #QuietAdventures 
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Photo credit @whatdoesbassee
Keep your 👀 eyes peeled for these guys around the park! At this time of the year, there are a lot of pups around.
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