Travel.P #47 – Abel Tasman

I would never win an award for not loving pizza.

Dwayne Johnson

Georgia and Jack were friends that lived with us on the campsite. They had a lovely tend and are great people. On this campsite they again were living in their tent. The campsite Kina Beach campsite, was a lovely campsite along the coast of the Tasman Bay. We slept there for a night and shared some stories together. The next morning we set up and left towards Takaka Hill. After driving through Orchards and stopping at a second hand shop for some little things for the van we arrived at the pass. It was a lovely drive up, with great views and down the other side, with complete different scenery, more mountains, and like a different world. No big cities, no big traffic, just small towns, nature and farms.

Rare shot of a wild Caveman

We went to Takaka, bought some supplies and our mission for the next days was the Abeltasman track. Before the track, we went to see a cave on our first day, my first real cave. Rawhiti Cave, it was huge in my opinion. We had to walk for a bit up the hill until we reached it. A big black hole in the mountain. Like a mouth with sharp teeth, trying to feast on the forest covering the entrance. The cave’s entrance is one of the largest cave entrances in New Zealand with an opening of about 40 metres wide and up to 20 metres tall. The ceiling is densely covered in stalactites which become increasingly finer deeper down into the cave. You can hear the echo of drops falling down the stalactites and splashing on some massive stalactites on the ground.

view over Abel Tasman

From there we went for a lovely sleeping spot on top of a hill from where we had great views over the valley and the Golden Bay. It was a calm and peaceful night.

The next morning we drove the van down the hill and to the Abeltasman Track. We arrived at early afternoon, got our stuff ready and started walking. The weather was lovely, the sun hot and we mostly got covered by trees. The walk was easy and comfortable, less of a hike but the nature was great, views over the Bay, sometimes even we even had a little glimpse of the North Island and Islands of the Malborough sound. The first beach was just close to the first hut. We had a short look around and continued to go back on the hill through the forrest. The forest now became more wet and moist with great tall trees. It all looked very green and relaxing on us. We also just met a few people on our hike, that was great. When we reached Mutton Cove Campsite it was getting colder and windy. Since we didn’t have a tent we looked for shelter and found it under the root of a tree. The beach was beautiful, with tall impressive trees on it. There were even some fire places to make a little fire and BBQ. I don’t want to imagine this place in the main season tho, must get quite crowded. After adding some sticks and leaves to the shelter, we cuddled up into our sleeping bags, made dinner and fell asleep. It was a windy cold night, and we fell asleep to the sound of wind and waves.

our little shelter

The next morning we woke up to a lovely sunrise, packed our things together and moved on on the track. Back into the forest. Anapai Campsite and finally to the Totaranui Bay from where we took a hike this time, it was actually worth calling it a hike back over the mountain through hot sun towards the beginning of the track. It was a perfect loop and apparently a better idea to walk this way than to walk the whole way, after getting opinions of different hikers. All in all I have to say that the hike is overrated but still nice and beautiful to do. It might be interesting to tun it in a days time since the paths are wide and smooth.

sunrise at the beach

Arriving at the other side at the car again, we started Chuis engine and went up to a lovely Pizza place, where we had a well earned dinner at Totos Cafe and Pizzeria. They build the place themselves, out of cob, and the energy was coming from a small river on the property. It was the second time I saw a homemade Pizza oven in the last two month and I decided I will build one at home as well.

After trying nearly each pizza, okay we only had three, we each had another piece of homemade cake, that was lovely as well and left to a labyrinth of stoned and boulders from where we left towards a river side where we slept and spent half of the next day trying to catch a fish and just hanging out by ourselves. It was a lovely spot, we could park on the river bed and spent the night there. That was very peaceful and calm, with open windows and the back of the van open, falling asleep to the soft voice of the small river.

at Totos

That’s it for today. Next time you will read about a lovely sunset crossing of the Takaka Hill and spending a day with Jack and Georgia while we installed tinned window sheets, why it is so hard to do and watching a beautiful sunset.

Why don’t go out get some ingredients, invite some friends and make some Pizza. After that you could watch a movie or play games for the evening.

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