Want to make the most of your morning before heading into the park?

After completing an afternoon safety briefing, paddle from Marahau to the Astrolabe area in the southern end of the national park.

The Astrolabe has the highest concentration of sandy beaches to explore and on the right tide you have the opportunity to explore a few caves before setting up camp. The Astrolabe comes alive late evening and early morning with the sound of Birdsong thanks to the efforts of the Abel Tasman Birdsong Trust. The camp sites are right on the beach with amazing views of both southern islands. Night one will be spent in this area.

Day two continue into the heart of the national park. Spend the day exploring Anchorage, Bark Bay and Onetahuti before returning via water taxi to Marahau. This trip covers 25km of coastline over 2 days.

Recommended campsite: Observation Beach. Camp pass included in price which we book on your behalf.

  • Start a bit later.
  • Spend a night in the Astrolabe listening to the dusk and dawn bird chorus.
  • If the tide is right allow time to explore the lagoons and inlets between Bark Bay and Anchorage.
  • Explore the Tonga Island Marine Reserve and its surrounds.

Hut accommodation is available for an additional cost, please contact us to arrange and camping gear can be hired at time of booking if required.

Minimum group size 2 (no solo hires).

Price

$190pp

Duration

2 Days

  • Check-in: 1.30pm
  • Open: I Nov – 31 Mar
  • 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, kayak transfer and camp pass (Abel Tasman Kayaks books on your behalf)
  • Food: Self catered
  • Paddling: Approximately 1.5 – 2 hrs day 1, 3 – 4 hours day 2 interspersed with breaks. No prior experience required
  • Water Taxi: One water taxi cruise
  • Bus: $50 Nelson return, $20 Motueka return operating 1 Nov – 31 Mar. On request outside of these times

Departure Times

Covid Passport All customers aged 12 yrs & 3 mths+ will need to present their ‘My Vaccine Pass’ before they can use our services.

The Department of Conservation require anyone overnighting in a hut or campsite or day visitors using hut or campsite facilities (except for toilets) to have a valid ‘My Vaccine Pass’.

Exemptions apply to those under 12 yrs & 3 mths.

Itinerary

  • Day 1

    1.00pm
    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.
    2.30pm
    On water assessment with guide.

    3.00pm
    Continue on your own to explore the Astrolabe.
    Spend the night at Observation Beach or Te Pukatea Bay.
  • Day 2

    Paddle to Onetahuti Beach allow 5 hours.
    2.30pm
    Arrive Onetahuti, unpack gear in preparation for water taxi transfer.
    3.15pm
    Water taxi pick up from Onetahuti beach.
    4.30pm
    Arrive back at Abel Tasman Kayaks’ base.

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

Preparation

Camp pass: Provided at check in.

Kayaking clothes: You’re bound to get wet when kayaking bring some quick drying clothes to paddle in. Shorts, t-shirt (long sleeves are preferable), warm top (wool/fleece), hat, sunglasses and shoes. Don’t forget your swimsuit and a towel!

Campsite clothing: Warm campsite clothing is essential for the evenings. Long pants, t-shirt, long-sleeved shirt, warm top (wool/fleece), trainers and socks, sleeping clothing, rainproof jacket.

Personal items: Such as medication, toiletries, camera (with plenty of film or memory space!), personal drinking bottle, first aid kit, torch, sunscreen and insect repellent.

We provide: 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.

Food & water: 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.

Day 1: Lunch, Dinner, Snacks
Day 2: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Snacks

Cooking equipment: If you plan to cook a hot meal ensure you bring a cooker and fuel as fires are only permitted in certain parts of the park, at certain times of the year. Pots, pans, utensils, cutlery, plates and cups will also come in handy.

Camping equipment: During the evening it can become quite cool in the park so please make sure you pack a tent, camping mat and a warm sleeping bag.

FAQS

  • 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 and our Covid-19 ones here

What our customers say

Loved every minute of this trip! These guys are super organized and friendly. Everything was sorted and the guides were awesome and very experienced. Time went by so fast. Wish I had done the 5- day tour!


nzfoodi

We did the whole day Soul Food tour and it was one of the best things I've ever done. As a novice kayaker I felt safe and our guide gave us great tips, clear instructions and had a lot of knowledge to share about the area. We saw loads of birdlife and the beautiful kekeno/NZ fur seals swimming near us were a massive highlight. The provided lunch was delicious too.... read more


bunsforlife

We did a combo kayak and sailing trip with Abel Tasman Kayaks and Abel Tasman Sailing Adventures. We LOVED the kayak portion of our trip! Our guide was super knowledgeable, and since our group moved quickly, we were able to see seals, stop on Adele Island and listen to the birds, and explore different portions of Abel Tasman via kayak. We had the best time — a great activity for... read more


S7322DWandreac

We booked the half day kayak tour to Observation Beach and everything was fantastic. Our guide Darryl was great- super knowledgeable about the area, funny and full of stories. We saw loads of sea lions, birds, golden beaches, sea caves and had fun exploring the coastline. Had a relaxing snack and tea/coffee on the beach before continuing on our self-guided trip back down the Abel Tasman track to Motueka. The... read more


CMelissa7

We did the two day guided kayaking trip, including an overnight stay on Mosquito Bay. Craig was our tour guide. Everything was included in the trip - kayak, safety gear, all meals, tent and sleeping bags etc.

We were collected from our accommodation and transported over to the Abel Tasman Kayak base in Marahau. It's a really cool and hippy base. All very professional, but still seriously hip and cool :...
read more


DaisyTurnip

Our guide was excellent, we had a fantastic time kayaking in the Tasman Sea. The scenery is beautiful, the kayaking great. Love the rock formations and the history of the area. Very interesting. We opted out of kayaking over to seal island as it was windy and rough. After kayaking we had coffee on the beach and hiked over to another beach to sail back... read more


Kristin B

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