Like the idea of having everything arranged for you but you’d prefer to walk independently? On this three day standard independent walk, we will organise your accommodation in comfortable standard ensuite rooms, luggage transfers, daily lunch and Picton drop off/pickups for walking the Queen Charlotte Track. All you need to do is purchase your breakfast and dinner along the way. Each night you come to rest at a comfortable accommodation place – Furneaux Lodge and Mahana Lodge OR Punga Cove - complete with great food on offer, fine wines and a superb setting.
Standard packages feature simple ensuite-style accommodation, normally without a view of the ocean, while Upgrades will ensure you have a sea view from your more modern ensuite-style unit.
A pre-tour briefing is held the day prior to departure. Details will be forwarded with your booking confirmation.
Day 1 – Ship Cove to Furneaux Lodge, Endeavour Inlet
We collect you from your accommodation in Picton to join the water taxi to Ship Cove where your walk begins. This scenic and historic reserve was a favourite anchorage for Captain Cook during his explorations in the 1770s as well as being a site of significance for local Maori. Bush is mainly a mixture of stunning podocarp and beech forest with punga ferns and other New Zealand native foliage. This day is regarded as the premier section of the Queen Charlotte Track. Your walk concludes at the historic Furneaux Lodge.
Day 2 – Endeavour Inlet to Mahana Lodge (or Punga Cove)
Today’s coastal walk takes you from Furneaux Lodge to Mahana Lodge through mostly regenerating native bush to the call of bellbirds, fantails and other New Zealand native birds. From Furneaux Lodge, the track continues through native bush and over a small swing bridge to the head of Endeavour Inlet. Pause there to learn more about antimony & the mining industry that thrived there in the 1880s. Follow the main track onwards and into Big Bay where pristine native beech forest awaits before working your way towards Camp Bay and Punga Cove. Five minutes on from there is your accommodation for the evening at Mahana Lodge.
Day 3 –2 options:
- Mahana Lodge to Torea Saddle/Portage Bay (approx. 8 hours/22.5km)
It’s a challenging day walking on the ridgeline between Mahana Lodge & Torea Saddle near Portage. Truly grand vistas abound round every corner – a wonderful reward indeed. You will be collected from Torea Bay at 5pm and return to Picton at 5.30pm approx.
- Take the morning water taxi transfer from Mahana Lodge to Picton
The water taxi will come and pick you up at approx. 10.15am (This time table is valid is from October through to April - return time to Picton 12.30) or pickup at 11.30 (This time table is valid all year round - return time to Picton around 12.30-12.45pm). Cruise around the bays and make your way to Picton, arriving there early afternoon.
Furneaux Lodge offers a range of accommodation depending on your requirements. The waterfront suites used for our Classic guided walk are contemporary one bedroom apartments, and are absolutely private with stunning views. Our standard independent packages stay in the Tobias Junior Suites, each with own ensuite.
Mahana Lodge is an oasis for the weary with its delightfully restored historic homestead and purpose built hiker lodge with four ensuite rooms and shared guest lounge. Enjoy free range eggs for breakfast and dine in the delightful conservatory. Your peace will only be broken by the song of the bellbird.
|1||17 km||6 hrs|
|2||11.5 km||4 hrs|
|3||23 km||8 hrs|
Add on First Day Guided Walk - $230 per person
- For those who want the added value of a local guide who will attend to every need as well as provide full interpretation on the area, this is the perfect way to start your Queen Charlotte Track experience. Your first day is regarded as the premier section of the Queen Charlotte Track. Many beautiful views are to be had across the Marlborough Sounds. Your informative local guide will explain the European and Maori connections of this significant historical area as well as provide detailed information on flora and fauna along the trail and general track advice. You are then well equipped to continue on your way for the remainder of your independent track experience . . .
Click to view high resolution version of the Queen Charlotte Track map
DURATION: 3 days
Total distance: 51.5 km (33 miles)
Minimum number of persons: 2
$640NZ per adult (based on twin share)
$325NZ per child
Single Supplement: $275NZ
$715NZ per person (based on twin share); no child rate available.
Single Supplement: $295NZ
Punga Cove Option
$730NZ per adult (based on twin share); $525NZ per child (based on sharing with two adults).
Single Supplement: $295NZ
NB. The Punga Cove option is great for families.
Day 1 – lunch only
Day 2 – lunch only
Day 3 – lunch only
Click to view Queen Charlotte Track gradient map