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Easy & Epic Adventures

Buckle up for adventure this summer BY SOPHIE PREECE

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MARLBOROUGH Level 1

Book a bach in the Marlborough Sounds and indulge in just the right amount of adventure – paddleboarding, bush walking and stone skimming, with a touch of water skiing if you’re feeling

Photo: MarlboroughNZ..com

mountain bike plummets down a steep and swooping forested trail, while schist slips under a tramping boot on an arid alpine face. A raft rears up like a startled animal, then plunges down a boisterous rapid, while a picnicladen kayak nudges the wave-lapped sands of a golden beach, gleaming in the sunshine. Yachts heel over in bracing winds, or sway gently in bush-clad bays, their clanging stays a cruising chorus that’s drowned out by morning birdcall. Paddleboards slip up rivers, surfboards charge along waves, walkers stroll under beech trees, climbers clamber up rock faces, e-bikers rocket along leafy tracks, and hammocks hang languorously under punga, swinging in happy indolence. Summer in the top of the South Island is a feast for hungry adventurers, and there’s something for everyone’s taste. Whether you find your fix with a two-person tent or a six-person caravan, a backcountry tramping hut or a luxury lodge, with an appetite for the extreme or a taste for the tentative, Marlborough, Nelson and Tasman have it covered. Here’s a sample of what’s on offer, ranked from level 1, gentle adventure, to level 5, for the fit and fierce. energetic. Or try Canopy Camping in a charming shepherd’s hut on a Taylor Pass farm, a luxury tent on a Kekerengu hillside or a fossicker’s hut amid a former goldmine. Add a Marlborough chardonnay, Marlborough mussels and salmon, and fresh asparagus on the side, and you’ve found your way to a deliciously indolent weekend away. This is the perfect way to dip your toes into adventure, without getting your hair too wet.

Level 2

Photo: Supplied

Head out sailing in the Marlborough Sounds, spotting dolphins, orca, penguins and seals along the way, then moor up in a beautiful bay for a Marlborough-made gin at sundown. You can charter a skippered boat and just enjoy the ride, or choose to captain your own vessel, taking this adventure up to level 3 or 4, depending on the weather. Another great level-2 adventure is the Link Pathway, a trail from Picton to Anakiwa that can be walked or biked in sections, so you can take on a leisurely hour or two a day, then pick up where you left off the next morning. Head to Rarangi for a beautiful walk to Whites Bay, and cruise down the east coast to walk from Marfells Beach to the Cape Campbell lighthouse.

Level 2 - 3

The Queen Charlotte Track is a heady mix of effort and reward, because every 30km day of walking or mountain biking ends with a comfy bed in a beautiful lodge. Bike (grade 2 to 4) or walk 38

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WildTomato December 2019  

Christmas Gifts | Latin Community | Easy & Epic Adventures | Apartment Living | Seaside Sanctuary | Picton’s Super Baker | Edinburgh Festiva...

WildTomato December 2019  

Christmas Gifts | Latin Community | Easy & Epic Adventures | Apartment Living | Seaside Sanctuary | Picton’s Super Baker | Edinburgh Festiva...