The Guide Series: West coast adventure with Irene

5 - 8 November 2020

SOLD OUT (See our waitlist for the next escape below)

Get off the beaten track while exploring a land that time forgot; relax waterfront and soak in those magical west coast sunsets...

  • Walk over Kainui station for some spectacular farm and coastal views
  • Enjoy lunch at the rustic Kainui lodge with produce from the farm and whitebait fritters!
  • Get off the beaten track in the heart of Waitomo to discover hidden waterfalls
  • Learn basic bush skills so you can feel confident with your trip planning
  • Gather around a campfire on the beach with port and toasted marshmallows
  • Relax at your accommodation and take in panoramic views of the water and sunsets.

5-8 November 2020: SOLD OUT

*limited to 6 spaces only

3 nights accommodation in waterfront kiwi bach, 3 days. All meals, snacks, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages and activities included.

Our COVID assurance/Cancellation policy: 

Place a pencil booking with no deposit or payment required until 14 days out. Should travel restrictions be put into place that inhibit your ability to join an escape, any payment received will be held as a credit with Nature & Nosh for 12 months and is fully transferrable to another person at no charge.

From $1,280pp

  • Fully inclusive price
  • Room options available

I'd like to join your next escape:

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Explore

Join us on an adventure through limestone-laden valleys, hidden waterfalls, lush native bush and coastal views with a three day escape to Waitomo and the ruggedly beautiful west coast settlement of Marokopa. Visit local Kainui station and tramp their farm track taking in west coast views, climbing and winding to the rustic, off-the-grid Kainui Lodge, built by local farmers Jan & Syd. A delicious lunch spread of farm fresh produce, whitebait fritters, New Zealand beer and wine will be waiting while we soak in the views and enjoy a couple of lawn games before a ride back down the farm track in the side-by-side with Syd. No escape to this part of Aotearoa would be complete without checking out the stunning Marokopa Falls, Natural Bridge and Ruakuri bush walk.

Taste

Kainui Station - Enjoy a gourmet farm lunch at Kainui Lodge on the hilltop after a decent whip over the station track to arrive there - with meat from the farm and fresh salads, plus whitebait fritters! Indulge in a glass or two of wine or beer while soaking in the epic views and surroundings.

Port and toasted marshmallows around a beach fire - Waikato family-owned Vilagrad Winery produce a delicious vintage Port which goes absolutely perfectly with a beach fire and some toasted marshmallows, maybe a bit of a sing-along. Other beverages will be on hand for those non-port drinkers.

To fuel your tramping -  Cooked (bacon and eggs) or continental breakfast. Gourmet packed lunches and snacks to take with you. Two gourmet three-course meals at your beach accommodation.

​Relax

You couldn't get closer to the water if you tried at this kiwi bach. Comfortable rooms and basic amenities are outclassed by the panoramic water views. Relax on the deck with a glass of wine while dinner is prepared for you, or throw a cast out and fish from the deck! Of course there will be time to take a stroll down to the beach for a dip or take your camera and explore the stretches of black sand and incredible rock formations. There are three rooms available for this escape with double configurations, so perfect for three couples.

About Irene

Irene loves sharing our great outdoors with like-minded souls. A local Waikato girl through and through, having retired from a business management background a few years ago, she now runs a farm at Waitomo but regularly gets out for adventures on her own or with friends when the mountains call. Irene has been a volunteer bush craft instructor with the New Zealand Mountain Safety Council for 15 years, so has oodles of experience. She loves learning about the bush, is positive about sustainability and minimalised living.

What people have said about tours with Irene:
"Great walking, wonderful food and wine, and first-class accommodation - what a tour! Our guide Irene was excellent and we saw parts of NZ most people don't see. Imagine walking a gorgeous wilderness trail offering breathtaking views and being one of the only people on the track. Then finishing off the day feasting on an amazing grazing plate and tasting excellent wines. More of that for me please!." - Brent, Australia

Your escape itinerary day by day

Day One: Thursday 5 November

Arrival day
Meet your group and guide at Marokopa anytime between 4pm and 6pm for welcome drinks and platter to share followed by your three course gourmet dinner at 7pm. Relax, wind-down, soak in the laid back vibes of this part of the west and get to know each other as Irene goes over the plan for the next three days escape.

*Marokopa is 50 minutes west of Waitomo Village and a 3 to 3.5 hour drive from Auckland, depending on where you are coming from. Transfers available from Hamilton on request.

Day Two: Friday 6 November

8km / 3 hours walking (medium grade)
This morning we a have short ten minute drive to Kainui station, where we begin our farm walk over the station to Kainui Lodge. Throughout the walk, Irene will take you through bushcraft 101 - in the best classroom, the outdoors! Briefly covering the basics of planning, clothing, equipment, first aid kits and weather, you will spend some time with a Topo50 map and compass learning the basics of navigation. Irene is a qualified bush instructor through the mountain Safety Council of New Zealand and has Level 3 in Outdoor Leadership through NZQA - plus oodles of experience in the outdoors leading trips. When school is out, our farm station walk leads us right up to the doorstep of Kainui Lodge, where a hot, farm to plate lunch will be waiting for us. Spend a couple of hours enjoying the views and charm of the lodge before a ride back down in a side-by-side and returning to the beach for a lazy afternoon.

Day Three: Saturday 7 November

17km / 7-8 hours hiking (moderate to hard grade)
Enter the hidden world of the Tawarau Forest, tucked deep in the heart of limestone-laden bluffs of Waitomo caves country. We have a full day in store today with a hike through what can only be described as a true kiwi 'tramping' track - with a 20 minute drive along a gravel road leading us to the starting point. There are many idyllic spots to stop and explore along the way including the hidden double falls, a river carved from limestone, a swing bridge and a rustic farm hut - with the final stretch winding over farmland through a limestone valley. We rarely cross paths with other trampers on this walk, it's a true hidden gem. The track itself is undulating with a few small climbs but overall we start at a a higher elevation than we finish at. By the end of the day you will be feeling ready to put your feet up and relax!

Day Four: Sunday 8 November

3km / 1 hours hiking (easy grade)
Enjoy a sleep in this morning, maybe a beach walk or morning dip before we say farewell to this sleepy settlement. Heading back in your own vehicles, our first stop is an easy ten minute walk on a new track, taking us to one of the most impressive waterfalls in the country. Second stop just up the road is to explore one of Waitomo's hidden wonders - the Natural Bridge, a 17m high natural limestone arch where we will enjoy our last picnic lunch together. Just before we reach Waitomo Village, we have one final leg stretcher, a short loop of the Ruakuri bush walk. A real highlight of the Waitomo area, this spectacular loop walk takes you through a forested gorge, past natural sculpted cliffs and under low limestone arches. The track follows the stream and winds up around a network of limestone bluffs and outcrops before descending down to a viewing platform. We wind the escape up with a hot cuppa and no doubt exchange of emails and numbers with new friends made.

Note: We will always endeavour to stick as closely to this itinerary as possible to deliver the best experience to you. If anything outside of our control should change as it does from time to time, we will substitute elements of this itinerary to reflect the same value and level of amazing!

Grading

Grade
Varies each day:
Day two - 3-4 hours tramping with bushcraft and navigation lessons throughout
Day three - 7-8 hours tramping
Day four - 1 hour tramping
Carrying a small day backpack for your personal gear such as water, lunch and a rain jacket.

Track conditions
Track surfaces on this escape vary, from well maintained paths through to more rugged terrain where you will be walking over tree roots, mud and rocks and steep farmland. There are also some small stream crossings your guide will help you navigate and one high swing bridge with fantastic river views. You will get the most out of this escape if you have a good level of fitness, but previous hiking experience is not necessary. Irene will ensure that the pace is dictated by the group and allow plenty of time for short breaks for water, refreshments and photos. For us, it's about the journey, not the destination. 

The ins and outs

Meet at our Marokopa accommodation between 4pm and 6pm on Thursday 5th November. The exact address will be to sent when you book. During this escape, you will be transported around in our super comfortable and spacious, Nature and Nosh Ford Transit custom van. On the last day, we will pack up and all self drive together to the day's walks - all of which are on the way back to Waitomo.

Rooms configurations:
Room 1: Medium room in main bach with shared bathroom (Queen bed)
Room 2: Small room in main bach with shared bathroom (Queen bed)
Room 3: Self-contained unit with ensuite bathroom and kitchenette (Queen bed)

Food 
Meals included on this escape:
Day 1: Welcome platter, dinner
Day 2: Breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks
Day 3: Breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks
Day 4: Breakfast, lunch

Cooked and continental breakfast options, gourmet packed lunches, three-course evening meals. Waikato wine and cheese, beer and non-alcoholic drinks will be provided all inclusive. Please advise your drink preferences when booking.

Special dietary requirements
If you have special dietary requirements, as long as we know about them in advance we should be able to cater for you. We hope to accommodate all special dietary requirements, however, if this is not possible we will inform you as soon as we can.

Safety
We are Qualmark Gold endorsed operators. Qualmark independently evaluates tourism operators in New Zealand annually to ensure quality across all business areas. A Gold Award is evidence of one of the most high quality, safe and sustainable experiences in New Zealand, with the delivery of exceptional customer experiences an integral part of everything we do.

Weather
We do walk in the rain! As long as our guides have deemed conditions safe for walking. We can usually change our day around a little to make the best of the weather, but you need to come prepared for the elements! See our recommended packing list.

IMPORTANT: WiFi and reception
Please note that there is no WiFi and limited reception at Marokopa - the exception being 30 minutes of free WiFi each day from the local campground and if you are on Vodafone network there is reception from the campground only.

Pricing for fully inclusive escape:

Room 1 double share: $1,300pp
Room 2 double share: $1,280pp
Room 3 self contained unit double share: $1,350pp

If you are a solo traveller and would like your own room, please get in touch for pricing.

Cancellation policy

Place a pencil booking with no deposit or payment required until 14 days out. Should travel restrictions be put into place that inhibit your ability to join an escape, any payment received will be held as a credit with Nature & Nosh for 12 months and is fully transferrable to another person at no charge.

Full terms and conditions (not including cancellation policy) can be found here.

*Escape requires a minimum of 4 people to have a guaranteed departure.

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