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 72km 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.
72km 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 72km Queen Charlotte Track in Marlborough. Track passes, getting there and the history.
The 72km 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
**Queen Charlotte Track Disruption.**
23rd August 2022
The Queen Charlotte Track was impacted by the recent significant weather event which hit Nelson and Marlborough. This event saw a considerable amount of rain over a 48 hour period causing slips and damage to the track and it’s surrounds.
The track, 72 km in length and popular with both walkers and cyclists, will require repairs as a result. The Department of Conservation completed a full assessment post the weather event, identifying parts of the track that will require maintenance.
The required maintenance will restrict access to small sections of the track with both walkers and cyclist diverted from accessing these sections until such time as the repairs have been completed. This will disrupt those planning to walk or cycle the track during this time. To keep up to date with track restrictions visit www.DOC.GOVT.NZ and search Queen Charlotte Track. This site will be regularly updated. If you are planning a trip to complete the Queen Charlotte Track in the near future, please get in contact with your booking agent, local operator or the Picton i-SITE for any additional information.
Follow the ridgeline then drop to Mistletoe Bay Eco Village where there are whare and campsites for anyone wanting to lengthen their stay.
From there it’s a lovely beech dappled ride to Anakiwa.
Organise a bus or a boat to Picton in advance, or ride on to Queen Charlotte Drive, which is a beautiful road bike to Picton.
Cycling from Anakiwa to Mistletoe Bay or Lochmara Lodge is a good day trip, with the option of organising a boat pick up or staying the night for a return journey the next day.
As parts of this section cross over private land, you'll need to purchase a Track Pass from the Picton, Blenheim or Havelock i-SITE Visitor Information Centres beforehand.
Approx 4 hr, 20 km
Total 600 metre climb
Experienced (full section)
Novice (waterfall bay to Anakiwa)
Water Taxi Points
Torea Bay, Lochmara Bay, Mistletoe Bay, Waterfall Bay, Anakiwa
Cowshed Bay campsite (DOC), Mistletoe Bay Eco Village, Davies Bay campsite (DOC)
Cowshed Bay campsite, Torea Saddle, Te Mahia Saddle, Mistletoe Bay Eco Village, Davies Bay campsite, Anakiwa
Cowshed Bay campsite, Davies Bay campsite
This section is open to mountain biking throughout the year.
Search & book
Mistletoe Bay Eco Village
Anakiwa 401 Self-catering Guesthouse
Ferries & Water Transport
Arrow Water Taxis
Wine & Food
Green Caravan Cafe @ Anakiwa 401
Cycling & Mountain Biking
Marlborough Sounds Adventure Co
Bed and Breakfast
Okiwa Bay Lodge
Ferries & Water Transport
Picton Water Taxis
Walking & Hiking
Queen Charlotte Track Pass
Smiths Farm Holiday Park
The Sounds Retreat
Cycling & Mountain Biking