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5 Day Premier Queen Charlotte Track Lochmara Lodge Independent Walk

70 kms (about 26 hrs) walking over 5 days

Days
5

Pricing From
$2045

Difficulty

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Overview

Our Boutique Five Day Queen Charlotte Track Freedom Walk takes the best boutique lodge accommodation available in the Marlborough Sounds within access to the Queen Charlotte Track combined with luggage transfers, daily lunch and Picton drop off/pickups. Like the idea of having everything arranged for you and staying in superb accommodation but still walking independently? If you prefer smaller properties with an emphasis on luxury, personal service, local delicacies and conservation, this is the package for you!

Each night you come to rest at a boutique lodge nestled by the water's edge where your hosts are warm and welcoming, offering up local delights on the lodge menu superbly complimented by fine local wines.

Tour Grading: C

  • No hiking experience necessary.
  • You need to be reasonably fit and enthusiastic.
  • Terrain mostly tracks.
  • Light day pack carried, with luggage transported by water taxi.

To get to Picton, probably the best way is to take the Interislander Ferry across from Wellington to Picton. Alternatively you can take the Coastal Pacific Train* up from Christchurch to Picton. 

*The train will have daily departures over summer from 27 September 2019 to 26 April 2020 only. 

Boarding Beachcomber Cruises

Saddleback on Motuara Island in the Marlborough Sounds

Overlooking Motuara Island

The Marlborough Sounds

Kereru, the New Zealand Native Pigeon

Bath with a view at No Road Inn

View from the deck at the Portage Hotel

Hammock Heaven at Lochmara Lodge

Hiking in the Marlborough Sounds

Ridgeline on the Queen Charlotte Track

Itinerary

Open All
Day 1Ship Cove to Furneaux Lodge, Endeavour InletAbout 15 kms/5 hrs walking

Day 0 - A pre-tour briefing is held the day prior to departure. Details will be forwarded with your booking confirmation.

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 well-appointed Furneaux Lodge in a lovely suite with sea views.

Accommodation - Furneaux Lodge

Built early this century, Furneaux Lodge comprises the original historic homestead now home to the restaurant and bar as well as separate fully self-contained chalets and upmarket studio units with sea views in a delightfully picturesque setting. Furneaux Lodge has an excellent restaurant for dinner and breakfasts. Our independent walkers stay in the upmarket studio suites with private ensuite and views out to the bay.

Day 2Endeavour Inlet to Mahana LodgeAbout 11.5 kms/4 hrs walking

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 and 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. The delightful Mahana Lodge is a five minute walk past Punga Cove.

Accommodation - Mahana Homestead

Mahana Lodge is nestled in the picturesque Marlborough Sounds, on the Queen Charlotte Track far from the hustle and bustle of city life. The clear waters of Endeavour Inlet stretch out towards bush covered mountains and often the only sound is the gentle lapping of the waves, and the song of the bellbird. Your hosts John and Ann have shaped Mahana into an oasis for the weary with its delightful and lovingly restored historic homestead where you dine on the verandah looking out into the bay to the purpose built lodge with four new ensuite rooms and shared guest lounge. Visit John's extensive organic vegetable garden, enjoy free range eggs and test your hosts' knowledge of the local flora and fauna - you won't be disappointed! A stay at Mahana while walking the Queen Charlotte Track is always memorable . . . people search the world over for a respite such as this . . .

Day 3Mahana Lodge to Torea Bay/Lochmara LodgeAbout 23 kms/8 hrs walking

You won’t want to leave but today we depart Mahana Lodge and return to the ridgeline to continue our hike along the Queen Charlotte Track.

A challenging but rewarding day on the ridgeline between Punga Cove & Torea Saddle. Truly grand views abound round every corner – a wonderful reward indeed. Stare in awe at the sunken river valleys of the Marlborough Sounds from the iconic Eatwell’s Lookout. At different times you can see both the Queen Charlotte and Kenepuru Sounds as you walk. This is a truly spectacular section of the track.

Those who feel like a day’s rest today can opt for a boat ride around the bays’ of the Queen Charlotte Sound to Lochmara Lodge.

You conclude your walk at Torea Bay and transfer by waiting water taxi to your accommodation at the lovely Lochmara Lodge.

NB. Optional boat trip today for non-walkers (additional cost).

Accommodation- Lochmara Lodge

Set on the tranquil shores of the Queen Charlotte Sound, Lochmara Lodge features quality accommodation as well as aviaries and enclosures with endangered species, an organic vegetable garden and orchard, educational signage, sculpture trail and art gallery. Our independent walkers stay in the luxurious Kakariki suites, each with ensuite and view to the sea.

Day 4Rest Day at Lochmara Lodge

Today is your chance to rejuvenate and relax at Lochmara Lodge. Take a kayak out or perhaps you prefer rest and relaxation enjoying a massage, soak in twin baths in the bath house or exploring the art trails and learning about the lodge's conservation projects. You can do as much or as little as you like, the choice is yours. Lunch is not included today unless on an organised tour that has been pre-arranged.

Day 5Lochmara to AnakiwaAbout 16 kms/6 hours walking

Farewell Lochmara Lodge and ascend to the ridgeline once again, enjoying stunning views back towards Picton as well as into the turquoise waters of the Kenepuru Sound. Open farmland and a grand native bush section to finish is a fitting finale after four days of walking.

Take time for a photo stop at the picturesque Davies Bay – you won’t want the journey to end.

Today you return by boat from the Anakiwa Jetty to Picton, arriving back to Wilderness Guides HQ by late afternoon.

Itinerary

Open All
Day 1Ship Cove to Furneaux Lodge, Endeavour InletAbout 15 kms/5 hrs walking

Day 0 - A pre-tour briefing is held the day prior to departure. Details will be forwarded with your booking confirmation.

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 well-appointed Furneaux Lodge in a lovely suite with sea views.

Accommodation - Furneaux Lodge

Built early this century, Furneaux Lodge comprises the original historic homestead now home to the restaurant and bar as well as separate fully self-contained chalets and upmarket studio units with sea views in a delightfully picturesque setting. Furneaux Lodge has an excellent restaurant for dinner and breakfasts. Our independent walkers stay in the upmarket studio suites with private ensuite and views out to the bay.

Day 2Endeavour Inlet to Mahana LodgeAbout 11.5 kms/4 hrs walking

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 and 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. The delightful Mahana Lodge is a five minute walk past Punga Cove.

Accommodation - Mahana Homestead

Mahana Lodge is nestled in the picturesque Marlborough Sounds, on the Queen Charlotte Track far from the hustle and bustle of city life. The clear waters of Endeavour Inlet stretch out towards bush covered mountains and often the only sound is the gentle lapping of the waves, and the song of the bellbird. Your hosts John and Ann have shaped Mahana into an oasis for the weary with its delightful and lovingly restored historic homestead where you dine on the verandah looking out into the bay to the purpose built lodge with four new ensuite rooms and shared guest lounge. Visit John's extensive organic vegetable garden, enjoy free range eggs and test your hosts' knowledge of the local flora and fauna - you won't be disappointed! A stay at Mahana while walking the Queen Charlotte Track is always memorable . . . people search the world over for a respite such as this . . .

Day 3Mahana Lodge to Torea Bay/Lochmara LodgeAbout 23 kms/8 hrs walking

You won’t want to leave but today we depart Mahana Lodge and return to the ridgeline to continue our hike along the Queen Charlotte Track.

A challenging but rewarding day on the ridgeline between Punga Cove & Torea Saddle. Truly grand views abound round every corner – a wonderful reward indeed. Stare in awe at the sunken river valleys of the Marlborough Sounds from the iconic Eatwell’s Lookout. At different times you can see both the Queen Charlotte and Kenepuru Sounds as you walk. This is a truly spectacular section of the track.

Those who feel like a day’s rest today can opt for a boat ride around the bays’ of the Queen Charlotte Sound to Lochmara Lodge.

You conclude your walk at Torea Bay and transfer by waiting water taxi to your accommodation at the lovely Lochmara Lodge.

NB. Optional boat trip today for non-walkers (additional cost).

Accommodation- Lochmara Lodge

Set on the tranquil shores of the Queen Charlotte Sound, Lochmara Lodge features quality accommodation as well as aviaries and enclosures with endangered species, an organic vegetable garden and orchard, educational signage, sculpture trail and art gallery. Our independent walkers stay in the luxurious Kakariki suites, each with ensuite and view to the sea.

Day 4Rest Day at Lochmara Lodge

Today is your chance to rejuvenate and relax at Lochmara Lodge. Take a kayak out or perhaps you prefer rest and relaxation enjoying a massage, soak in twin baths in the bath house or exploring the art trails and learning about the lodge's conservation projects. You can do as much or as little as you like, the choice is yours. Lunch is not included today unless on an organised tour that has been pre-arranged.

Day 5Lochmara to AnakiwaAbout 16 kms/6 hours walking

Farewell Lochmara Lodge and ascend to the ridgeline once again, enjoying stunning views back towards Picton as well as into the turquoise waters of the Kenepuru Sound. Open farmland and a grand native bush section to finish is a fitting finale after four days of walking.

Take time for a photo stop at the picturesque Davies Bay – you won’t want the journey to end.

Today you return by boat from the Anakiwa Jetty to Picton, arriving back to Wilderness Guides HQ by late afternoon.

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