The second NZ travel story for the Country Road blog Live With Us
In the north western corner, on top of New Zealand’s South Island is an area known as The Tasman. The Tasman has an abundance of national parks full of beautiful beaches, lakes, rivers, mountain ranges and native forests. We stayed at Honeywell Hut, a remote hideaway, tucked away in the Motueka Valley. This rustic yet cosy hut is on a private cattle and beef farm, set amongst rolling hills and lovingly placed next to a quaint area of the Baton River. A pot belly stove keeps you warm inside, and an outdoor wood stove heats all the water for the outdoor (and under the stars) bath and shower. Other than the sound of birdsong, waterfalls and a few curious sheep, you feel totally disconnected from the world, yet the township of Motueka is only a 40 minute drive away.
Motueka is home to many locally renowned artists and musicians. The eclectic and creative vibe is reflected in many of the township’s cafes and boutiques. Our favourite spot for lunch is Toad Hall, the seafood chowder never disappoints. The nearby beaches, such as Kaiteriteri and Marahau, are some of New Zealand’s most beautiful and picturesque beaches. After a day in the sun and swimming in the sea, nothing beats stopping off at one of the many orchards for a real fruit ice cream. The Motueka Valley is also home to some boutique vineyards, including Neudorf Wines…travel through hop gardens, apple orchards and berry farms to find Neudorf’s cellar door just outside the creative village of Upper Moutere. Mapua is another absolute must if visiting The Tasman…you simply cannot beat The Smokehouse for their fresh fish and tasty chips on the wharf, followed by a few jumps off the jetty. A quintessential kiwi summer moment right there! If you visit Mapua in the morning Rabbit Island Coffee Company is the perfect coffee and breakfast spot or if you’re there a little later in the day, a wine at Rimu Wine Bar is the perfect place to unwind and watch the sunset. Either way, you cannot go wrong in The Tasman.