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It’s just a hill, get over it!

Takaka Hill, the gateway to your Golden Bay tours, provides an entertaining drive to bring you to a breathtaking view of Takaka River running through the valley below with the Tasman mountains behind, voted 3rd in a poll of NZs best driving roads for road trips! Driving down, you enter into the unspoilt and laid back and idyllic hidden gem of Golden Bay, brimming with beaches, bays, baches and bush walks.

The drives throughout are pretty fab too – read our TravelBlogue on how you can take one of the great NZ drives to get there, or watch the clip of us doing it below…


Once you’re over the hill (!), here our favourite personally well sampled distractions are below.


Relaxing in Golden Bay:

Beaches – loads to walk along and enjoy – Pohara, Tata, Ligar Bay, Patons Rock, Wainui Bay, all with much soft sand, shallow easy swim waters and stunning views.

Horse Riding @ Hack ‘n Stay FarmFine for novices, (like me), but also experienced riders, you get to ride along a wonderful beach and kick up some surf!

Takaka Village Theatre slip into a sofa, bask on a beanbag, while enjoying the latest popular and arthouse movies. They even still have an intermission so you can top up and take in a glass of wine or cup of coffee…..mmm, nice…..

Waitapu Springs B&BHOT TUBS and (cool) indoor pool – available to non staying members but phone in advance to reserve your timeslot.


Accommodation in Golden Bay:

Waitapu Springs B&B, Takakacosy, characterful B&B with abundant continental breakfasts, (including Belgian chocolate), plus outdoor HOT TUBS & sauna plus indoor chilled swimming pool to help cool off in, all included, (which you can pay a small amount to indulge in even if not a guest).

Shady Rest B&B: A Victorian villa with decor to match, and superb fruity and eggy breakfasts.


Eating in Golden Bay:

Choco Loco, Takakagorgeous hand crafted award winning chocolates, opposite Dangerous Kitchen. If that’s not enough they also do great pastries, coffee and other chocolate delights. Don’t go there if you’re a) hungry or b) on a tight budget…you just have to have more…..

Wholemeal Cafe, Takaka – a legend in it’s own lunchtime, (and dinner time), with a great atmosphere.

Roots Bar, Takaka – Mix it up with the locals and a laid back vibe, plus the tastiest home made burgers in town.


Walking in Golden Bay:

Labyrinth Rocks Park, Takaka – great place to scare the kids silly, (and possibly yourself), by going there just before dusk….

Wainui Falls, Wainui well worth the easy access 30 minute walk, with cool rock pools and swing bridge along the way, just about the last stop before the sealed road taking you on a twisting Mediterranean like drive runs out at Wainui Bay. From very near here you can also access the northern most point of the glorious Abel Tasman National Park for some good walks, but note on foot only, you cannot drive our cars on the unsealed track to Totaranui.

Te Waikoropupu Springs (or ‘Pupu Springs‘), just north of Takaka – the largest coldwater springs in the southern hemisphere with some of the clearest water ever measured in the world.

For more information click any of the orange links or go to



LIVE webcam of Golden Bay marina – stream courtesy of Tasman District Council.


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