The iconic Queen Charlotte Track, stretching from Ship Cove to Anakiwa, is a journey from past to present, via panoramic ocean views, thriving native bush and encounters with the likes of weka, fantail, wood pigeon and even seals.
The 70km Queen Charlotte Track offers a rich history, incredible scenery and the freedom to walk or mountain bike without heavy gear with a network of water taxis available to transfer you to and from the track, and transfer your gear to your accommodation each night.
A full range of accommodation options are available, including luxury water's edge resorts, lodges, holiday houses, backpackers and campsites.
The track is relatively easy walking, taking 3 to 5 days depending on how far you want to walk each day, and is a fantastic mountain bike ride, over 2 to 3 days. The full track is open to mountain biking from 1 March to 30 November each year, with some sections closed outside of these dates. If time doesn't allow you to complete the full track, take a water taxi out and complete just a section from a few hours to a couple of days.
70km one way
Duration: 3-5 days
Grade: Easier Tramping Track
Duration: 2-3 days
Grade: Intermediate (Grade 3) / Advanced (Grade 4)
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Things to know
Find out all the essential information for walking or biking the 70km Queen Charlotte Track in Marlborough. Track passes, getting there and the history.
The 70km Queen Charlotte Track is one of New Zealand's Great Rides and one of the longest pieces of continuous single track in the country. You can have your luggage carried by boat, whether you choose to stay in a lodge or camp at a conservation campsite.
The Queen Charlotte Track is all about freedom. You can lug a pack, camp at beautiful conservation campsites, and be finished in 3 days. Or carry just your lunch and jacket, stay in lodges along the way and stretch the journey out to 5 days.
The track is accessible by land and water at many places, so if you don’t have time to hike the whole thing you can choose one section and do it in a day.
Places to stay
New Zealand is spoilt for choice when it comes to beautiful walks, but when you find a beautiful walk with beautiful accommodation as well, you are in for a real treat. Whether you’re camping or planning a night of luxury you’re going to love your nights on the track.
- Bike Ship Cove to Camp Bay
- Bike Camp Bay to Torea Saddle
- Bike Torea Saddle to Anakiwa
- Walk Ship Cove to Endeavour Inlet
- Walk Endeavour Inlet to Camp Bay
- Walk Camp Bay to Torea Saddle
- Walk Torea Saddle to Mistletoe Bay
- Walk Mistletoe Bay to Anakiwa
- Ship Cove Waterfall Track
- Antimony Mines short walk
- Mistletoe Bay short walks
Mondo Kopua Biking enthusiast
“The thing I love about Marlborough, which you see when you cycle it, is the diversity of the landscape. We’ve got high country like up the Awatere Valley, then the Richmond Range, the Marlborough Sounds and all the rivers. Personally I’m an open country, high country farm sort of person. I love getting up in the hills.”My insider guide to Marlborough
The best way to start your trip is to take a water taxi from Picton to Ship Cove, the starting point of the 70km Queen Charlotte Track. There are numerous scheduled and private water taxi options from Picton.
Scheduled water taxi providers also offer a service to carry your luggage to your next night's accommodation each day, which means you only have to carry a day pack. Be sure to ask about this service when booking.
There are both road and boat transport services to and from Anakiwa, the end of the track, but those on bike may choose to cycle on to Picton or Havelock. The Link Pathway will eventually link up Anakiwa to both Picton and Havelock, with some sections already usable.
If you are keen on a day walk, talk to some of the businesses at the Picton foreshore about their drop off and pick up services. They can recommend which sections of the track might fit your time frame and interests.
If you’re travelling by road and fancy a shorter walk, Anakiwa, Mistletoe Saddle, Torea Saddle and Kenepuru Saddle are all accessible by car.
Anakiwa, Mistletoe Bay, Torea Bay, Camp Bay, Endeavour Inlet, Resolution Bay and Ship Cove can be accessed by sea.
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Ferries & Water Transport
Arrow Water Taxis
Ferries & Water Transport
Picton Water Taxis