Premium Tours in Takaka and Golden Bay
In a destination as rich in creativity, wildlife and natural beauty as Golden Bay, the luxury experiences are something else. Let the scenic flights, horse treks and eco-tours wow you with amazing landmarks, such as one of New Zealand’s most protected areas, Farewell Spit, or the remote coves and beaches of the northern Abel Tasman National Park. Takaka and Golden Bay are also places to connect with yourself thanks to the creative workshops and spa treatments available.
So plan your experiences with this list of luxury activities in Takaka and get more advice for planning a premium getaway in The Luxury Guide to Takaka.
1. Take a Scenic Flight Over Golden Bay and Abel Tasman
See it all from a breathtaking perspective on a scenic flight with Adventure Flights Golden Bay. From short flights over the immediate Golden Bay area to a flight over the golden beaches of the Abel Tasman National Park, they have something to suit a range of timeframes and budgets. Their Farewell Spit flight is another spectacular option allowing you to truly appreciate the scale of this sandspit that keeps on growing. Alternatively, join Golden Bay Air for a more comprehensive scenic flight over the Kahurangi National Park, Wharariki Beach, Cape Farewell, the Abel Tasman National Park and much more.
Location: 290 Takaka-Collingwood Highway, Puramahoi, approximately 6km (4 miles) from Takaka town centre.
2. Indulge in a Spa Day
If the weather isn’t great, don’t let your luxury getaway come to a halt. Use it as an excuse to hit the pause button and relax with one of the Golden Bay’s indulgent day spas. Aroha Health Spa is a fantastic option with an extensive menu of body massages, spa and sauna sessions, holistic treatments, facials and more in a down-to-earth setting. After your treatment, rejuvenate with healthy meals, organic coffee, fresh juices or herbal teas in their Garden Sanctuary Spa exclusive to guests. Alternatively, guests of Westhaven Lodge can unwind with holistic massages, reflexology and other wellness therapies, while the Waitapu Springs spa is a small complex with cedar hot tubs, a Scandanavian sauna, indoor pool and a Middle Eastern chill-out room. The latter also offers affordable luxury in their B&B accommodation, which you can find out more about in the 10 Best Budget Accommodation in Takaka.
Location: Aroha Health Spa – 792 Abel Tasman Drive, Pohara, approximately 9km (6 miles) from Takaka town centre. Westhaven Lodge – 336 Te Hapu Road, Mangarakau, approximately 68km (42 miles) from Takaka town centre. Waitapu Springs – 50 Waitapu Road, Takaka town.
3. Be Treated to Fine New Zealand Cuisine
Admittedly, Golden Bay favours more laidback dining when it comes to eating out, with highlights of the area including the Mussel Inn and The Wholemeal Cafe, which you can learn more about in The Foodie Guide to Takaka. However, if you’re looking for a more sophisticated dining experience, one of your best options is dining at Ratanui Lodge and their cocktail lounge, specialising in a tapas and set menu of contemporary New Zealand cuisine. See more fine dining recommendations in The Luxury Guide to Takaka.
Location: 818 Abel Tasman Drive, Pohara, approximately 9km (6 miles) from Takaka town centre.
4. Ride Across One of the World’s Most Beautiful Beaches on Horseback
Experience the windswept beaches of Wharariki and Puponga Beaches or perhaps the views from dramatic hills of the Old Man Range on a horse trek at Cape Farewell. Ride Cape Farewell Trek’s beautiful horses to the views of the iconic Archway Islands that give Wharariki Beach the title of one of the world’s most beautiful beaches or see the wild west coast from the mountaintops of the Old Man Range with a wide range of terrain to tackle. Choose from treks to suit beginners to seasoned riders.
Location: 23 McGowan Street, Puponga, approximately 50km (31 miles) from Takaka town centre.
5. Kayak in the Uncrowded Waters of the Northern Abel Tasman National Park
For those wishing to explore the Abel Tasman National Park, you have most serene part of the park to experience from Golden Bay – all to yourself much of the time. Either join a small-group tour or private bespoke tour with Golden Bay Kayaks to paddle to the park’s remote inlets and coves, the Tata Islands with New Zealand’s largest shag colonies, meet friendly seals and enjoy morning tea or some other local culinary delights prepared for you on a remote golden-sand beach. It’s also one of the activities we feature in the 10 Romantic Activities in Takaka for Couples.
Location: 29 Cornwall Place, Tata Beach, approximately 14km (9 miles) from Takaka town centre.
6. Browse the Art Galleries or Take Part in a Creative Workshop
Golden Bay is a haven for art and creativity. Be inspired by simply browsing the array of art galleries in Golden Bay, such as MONZA Gallery, Earth Sea Gallery, TOTOS Cafe & Gallery, Sculpture705 Art Lollkiki and MAD Cafe & Arts Centre – to name a few. If you want to get a more hands-on experience, however, Art Haven near Collingwood offers a comprehensive range of creative workshops in their light-filled studio. Their experienced and knowledgable tutors are on-hand to help you start out on your creative journey, assist if you’re in a rut with your art, or simply enable your creativity. Choose from their regular sessions, weekend workshops, half-day or one-day workshops.
Location: MONZA Gallery – 25 Commercial Street. Earth Sea Gallery – 76 Boyle Street, Clifton, approximately 8km (5 miles) from Takaka town centre. Totos Cafe & Gallery – 400 Totaranui Road, Tata Beach, approximately 23km (14 miles) from Takaka town centre. Sculpture705 Art Lollkiki – 705 Abel Tasman Drive, Clifton, approximately 8km (5 miles) from Takaka town centre. MAD Cafe & Arts Centre – 7 Tasman Street, Collingwood, approximately 28km (17 miles) from Takaka town centre. Art Haven – Collingwood, approximately 28km (17 miles) from Takaka town centre.
7. Take Part in a Farm Tour, Eco Tour, Fishing and More at Westhaven Lodge
This luxury lodge on a remote 404.6ha (1,000 acre) private peninsula is an attraction in itself, boasting a wealth of activities for guests. On-site at Westhaven Lodge, take a guided kayaking tour of the secretive tidal arms and inlets, be picked up from the lodge for guided coastal fishing, take a 4WD safari of the farm and learn about local flora and fauna, cycle the deserted mountain bike trails of the peninsula, and take a farm tour to meet the sheep, llamas, cows and goats. Learn more about the accommodation itself in the 5 Best Luxury Accommodation in Takaka.
Location: 336 Te Hapu Road, Mangarakau, approximately 68km (42 miles) from Takaka town centre.
8. Tour Farewell Spit – One of the Most Protected Places in New Zealand
Get exclusive access to Farewell Spit, New Zealand’s longest sandspit and one of the most protected environments in the country, with Farewell Spit Tours. At low tide, join the team on a small-group bus tour for a journey along the expansive sand with rolling and ever-changing dunes, beautiful wildlife and a lonely lighthouse. Take a comprehensive tour of Farewell Spit seeing the main highlights on the Farewell Spit Tour or opt for one of the nature experiences like the Gannet Colony Tour or Wader Watch Tour.
Location: 6 Tasman Street, Collingwood, approximately 28km (17 miles) from Takaka town centre.