Romantic Getaway to Hokitika

Exploring Lake Kaniere and a Boat Cruise up the Mahinapua Creek

My wife likes surprises…

So, I decided I’d take her somewhere for her birthday tomorrow, just the two of us.

My wife is kind of amazing actually…

We meet online a little over a year ago, I flew to Brazil and married her two weeks later, and it’s been a CRAZY adventure with her ever since!

As much as I’d like to go into detail about our incredible love story, I’m going to save that for another post.

Off to Hokitika

I finished work early today. I told Sara to pack a suitcase because we’re heading away for the night.

Before embarking on our adventure, we first stopped in to check out a reasonably new café in Hokitika where we caught up with Rachel from Hokitika Scenic Tours.

Rachel organises group tours around the West Coast or New Zealand, so I thought I would introduce myself and the Adventure Packages I’m putting together through Adventure West.

Rachel has lived in the Coast for 30 years and has been running her business for a number of years. Like myself, Rachel has a PASSION for people to have genuine, authentic experiences of the West Coast of New Zealand.

We were able to talk about how my business Adventure West would be able to partner with her business which does group tours around Hokitika, to put together some FANTASTIC Adventure Packages for you to experience the West Coast.

After we finished chatting with Rachel and finished our hot chocolate, I took my amazing wife away for a drive to Lake Kaniere.

Taken at Lake Kaniere

Lake Kaniere

Sara looking out at the Lake

Lake Kaniere is one of New Zealand’s most beautiful lakes and the second biggest lake in the West Coast. There is a range of great things to do here including swimming, fishing, boating, kayaking and mountain biking. It’s also possible to stay the night here at the Hans Bay Camp Site.

Dorothy Falls

Once you get to the campsite, if you carry on a little further around the lake, you’ll reach the starting point to the Dorothy Falls Walkway. From the carpark it’s literary a minute walk to reach the beautiful Dorothy Falls – it’s well worth checking out!

Adjacent to the waterfall track is another short walk that leads to the lake, so we decided to go for a stroll. We had a fun time hanging out, taking pictures, talking about future dreams, and telling stories while walking down this GORGEOUS pathway to the lake.

After our romantic lakeside walk, I took Sara to Gavin and Cindy’s place just north of Hokitika. They kindly invited us to stay and have dinner with them.

Gavin and Cindy are the owners of the Scenic Waterways in Hokitika, and some INCREDIBLE cottages that you can stay in. These cottages are located right next to the West Coast Wilderness Cycle Trail, which makes it a premium location for anyone planning on doing the cycle trail.

The cottages are also right next to start of the Eco Boat Cruise which I planned on doing with Sara in the morning.

Gavin and Cindy are the most warm-hearted, loving people you will ever come across. We had an incredible time talking about business, DREAMS and IDEAS, and life in general over a fantastic feed of mac n’ cheese, homemade bread and salad.

These guys have done such an AMAZING job transforming the piece of land they own into a stunning location to go and enjoy the outdoors.

Sara enjoying a morning cupa from our room

After dinner, Gavin and Cindy left Sara and me to enjoy the house to ourselves for the night. The location and quality of the cottages here can’t be overrated - we just loved it!

In the morning, we enjoyed a bit of a sleep-in, some breakfast, and stroll down part of the cycleway trail which only took about 3 minutes to get to – it was breath-taking!

When we got back, it was time to get ready to experience the Scenic Waterways Boat Cruise.

Up the Mahinapua Creek

Just a two-minute walk from where we stayed was the start or the Scenic Waterways Cruise. We climbed on board the boat, and after a brief safety talk, we took off up the Mahinapua Creek.

Gavin, who took us on the trip, has a tonne of knowledge of the area. I enjoyed listening to the stories he shared with us along the journey of the early pioneers and gold diggers that use to roam this area.

The boat is wonderfully built. It has enough room to walk around, relax on a beanbag, or go up on the higher platform to get some stunning photos.

Sara and I were blown away by the beauty of the ancient Rimu and Kamahi trees reflecting off the water and the abundance of wildlife in the area.

The experience far EXCEEDED my expectations.

Once we reached the lake, we stopped and had a hot drink on the boat, some of the other guys who were with us actually got out here and kayaked back which looked like a tonne of fun! We didn’t have the time for it on that day, but next time for sure!

Sara taking photos off the top deck

We returned the same way we came, and seeing it from a different angle was just as exciting - the perfect end to a fantastic getaway.

Once we returned, it was time to head back home to Greymouth. We said goodbye to Gavin and Cindy and left with some great memories and some new adventure ideas from our discussions.

If you’re passing through Hokitika for a night, make it part of your travel itinerary to book a stay at one of the incredible Bed and Breakfast Accommodation Cottages Gavin and Cindy have here, and definitely do the boat cruise, it’s well worth it!

This concludes this week’s adventure. Leave a comment if you’d there’s anywhere you’d like for us to go, and make sure to keep checking out this blog to see where we take you on our next adventure!

Until next time…


Phi Roper


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Coal Creek, Greymouth

0800 669 372


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