The Abel Tasman National Park is renowned for its stunning natural landscapes, with diverse geography capturing everything from long golden beaches to untouched forests and rugged mountains. It may be New Zealand’s smallest national park – but it’s perfectly formed for relaxation and adventure.
Nelson & Abel Tasman is an easily-accessible coastal paradise. You can choose to explore the park from land, on the water, or in the air, with tour operators aplenty offering cruises, water taxi services, kayaking options, heli-tours and sailing catamarans. One of the sunniest cities in New Zealand, Nelson is the perfect spot to base yourself while you spend some time exploring the Abel Tasman National Park.
Whilst summer is a popular time to visit, locals believe that the shoulder seasons are actually the best time to explore the park, as crisp mornings, calm waters and quiet beaches allow you to truly enjoy the peace and serenity.
Those who crave home comforts can stay in luxurious lodges, but sleeping under the stars is regarded as the ultimate way to experience the spirit of the Abel Tasman.
Here, inviting sandy beaches fill the spaces between trees and tide line. Crystal clear streams tumble down mossy valleys to join the ocean. Granite and marble formations fringe the headlands, which are cloaked in regenerating native forest.
At Te Puketea Bay, a perfect crescent of golden sand, a walking track leads up Pitt Head to an ancient Maori pa (fort) site. Terracing and food pits are still visible, and it’s easy to see why the location was chosen as a defensive site – the views are huge.