Akaroa to Onuku
RV at 5.45pm in front of the Akaroa Post office, in front of the bank BNZ in the towncentre. A shuttle of Banks Peninsula Track, driven by on the members of this association, will drop you off at your first accommodation in Onuku. You will get a map and a travelbook with history facts and description of the highlights of the track, and a brief will be hold before you go as it is an unguided walk and there are no warden in the cottages (even though the members of the association live on the track, close to your accommodations). 15min drive.
Onuku to Flea Bay (11km/ 7miles)
After a 500m walk uphill, you get a spectacular view on the bay and the Pacific Ocean, and then walk in farmlands and tussock. As you go down in a lush forest, you are more and more surrounded by a rainforest type of vegetation. Small waterfalls on the way enable you to cool down and enjoy a bath in their basins. You will walk through a Nikau palms and tree ferns bush before arriving ashore. Flea Bay, where your accommodation is, a fireplace, books, games, pétanque bowls are at your disposal. You can also rent a
sea kayak here to explore the bay, or watch little blue penguins from Oct to Feb (with 200 penguins, Flea Bay has the largest colony of this specie in New Zealand).
Flea Bay to Stony Bay (8km/5miles)
While you go uphill along the left part of the bay, you will be surprised to see so many penguin shelters. You get progressively an interesting panoramic view, and face big cliffs with a nice red coloured volcanic rock. Marine current and gusts of winds for thousands of years have offered us this beautiful landscape (you are actually walking close to the Roaring Forties!). A tiny island floats on this huge ocean, with emeraud and deep blue waters : with the volcanic cliffs, it reminds the landscapes of Easter Island... You pass by the Cave of the Seals and its colony; the toilets there deserve to have a nosy : another example of the originality and surprises of this trekking. You keep walking along the bays to go down to Stony Bay, after crossing a bush.
Stony Bay to Otanerito (6km/ 4mi)
Walking in a similar landscape, the views offered along the track today are a mix of cliffs, geological wonders and the sea. The country style with the numerous sheep and fields you will see remind us the importance of agriculture when the first European settled down here.
Otanerito to Akaroa (10km/ 6.5miles)
The track leads to the bay of Akaroa : crossing the land to reach the other side of the peninsula, you climb up to a saddle located at 590m of altitude. You walk through the lush Hinewai Reserve, known for its beech tree forest, palm trees, tree ferns, etc... Several detours are possible to reach waterfalls. From the pass, you can keep going up to Stony Bay Peak (806m), in 1h walk return, to have privileged 360 views of Akaroa, its bay, Otanerito and the reserve : absolutely breathtaking.
What Jo says about this tour: A charming, relaxed hike around Banks Peninsula with moderate distances and the freedom to go at your own pace. The hut accommodation is rustic with plenty of opportunities to see wildlife and chat to the locals.Enquire Now