Welcome to paradise!
With only one access road in, this piece of paradise is well worth the scenic drive over Takaka Hill. From your first glimpse on top of Marble Mountain you get the ‘Wow’ factor with sweeping views over impressive limestone outcrops, sandy golden beaches, native bush, caves, rivers and beautiful natural springs. There is everything here. Welcome to Mohua – Golden Bay, one of New Zealand’s best kept secrets!
World class attractions include:
Pohara Beach, Tata Beach and Wainui Bay
Pohara and Tata Beach are the two main holiday centres of Golden Bay. Both have wonderful sandy beaches with easy swimming and walking options. They are quiet but also popular for surfing, blokarting, kayaking and water skiing. The Tata Islands with their steep limestone cliffs, archways and seabird colony are a favoured destination for kayakers, and nearby Wainui Bay worldclass for kitesurfing.
Abel Tasman National Park
This National Park is famous for its pristine golden beaches, sculpted granite cliffs and its great walking track. There is free road access and walking tracks to suit all levels of fitness. The Golden Bay side of the Park is the wildest but most peaceful, and will certainly leave you with life-long memories.
Te Waikoropupu Springs
This is without doubt Golden Bay’s most famous attraction. The cold freshwater springs are the largest in the Southern Hemisphere with some of the clearest water ever measured! The Springs are very mystical and spiritual, and a real haven for nature and photo lovers. They are accessed by an easy loop walk.
Wharariki Beach is likewise a photographer’s paradise, well known for the Archway Islands of New Zealand calendar and desktop wallpaper fame, and ranked by National Geographic as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Not only this, but gorgeous seal pups are waiting for you too.
Farewell Spit Nature Reserve
Over 112 species of birds have been recorded on this sandspit with more than 20 species of migrant wading birds. This birdwatcher’s paradise is New Zealand’s longest sandspit at a length of 35km. Its sand dunes and hilltop walk are a breathtaking experience.
The walk to the falls is only 40 minutes, but probably the most beautiful bushwalk in the Bay. A suspension bridge adds a bit of adventure and there is the sound of rushing water all around you on the track. The falls are certainly the most impressive in Abel Tasman National Park, highly spiritual with amazing swim holes, river beaches and towering rata trees.
The Grove and Milnthorpe Scenic Reserves
The Grove is only a short drive from our Lodge and an easy 20 minute loop walk, which winds through narrow limestone canyons abundant with unique rata trees and nikau palms. Milnthorpe Scenic Reserve is another hidden gem in Golden Bay with numerous artworks in the bush leading to a stunning, remote beach. In both places you will be serenaded by native birds and enjoy unparalleled natural beauty.
Locals will tell you: It’s just a hill, get over it! We have to admit however that reaching the summit of Takaka Hill at 791 metres above sea level can be a little arduous, but quickly forgotten once you see the beauty of Golden Bay and the Tasman mountains. For those who like more heart-stopping moments, there is an unsealed road to the Lord of the Rings site near Canaan, or the 183m deep Harwood’s Hole, or perhaps a visit to the skeleton filled Ngarua caves.
The Cobb Valley is one of the few places in New Zealand that you can drive along a high mountain valley carved out by glaciers, and amidst beautiful red and silver beech. The 27km long drive also offers a wide range of opportunities for the active tramper.
Unknown terrain for many, but a real hidden paradise with an easy, adventure drive along the edge of the Westhaven estuary or Whanganui Inlet. This is the second largest estuary in the South Island, and as well as being a beautiful landscape is an important fishing and wildlife area.
This famous and popular mountain bike track follows one of the earliest surveyed routes into Takaka Valley and runs from Canaan to Central Takaka. It is certainly thrill seeking for mountain bike lovers, with a perfect mix of adventure, views and attractions along the way. Harwood’s Hole is definitely worth a side trip! Bikes can be rented locally, and transport to/from the track is available on request.
Anatoki Salmon Farm, The Mussel Inn
Anatoki Salmon Salmon Fishing is one of our top attractions! Here you can catch your very own fresh salmon and have it smoked or prepared on the spot in whichever way you prefer. The Mussel Inn Café is another truly iconic place, best known for its authenticity and couleur locale. Their Captain Cooker beer is a must!
Dancing Sands and Kiwi Sprit
For those after a higher alcohol percentage, we recommend our two local distilleries: Dancing Sands & Kiwi Spirit. Prepare yourself for delicious tastings of New Zealand made whisky, gin, vodka, lime and tangelo liqueurs with the excuse that the aquifer feeding Pupu Springs (the third clearest spring water body in the world) is the base for all these goodies!
Art Galleries and Village Market
Golden Bay is famous for its unique, artistic and easygoing atmosphere with endless galleries displaying local arts and crafts. On Saturday mornings our openair market is a social mingling of locals and visitors browsing and buying, meeting and greeting whilst listening to live music. You will find a fine mix of exclusive handmade items, locally created food and other treasures to take home.