Activities in Punakaiki

Below is a list of tourism activities available in and around Punakaiki – there’s something here for everyone!

Paparoa National Park Visitor Centre

Department of Conservation Visitor Centre.
Call in and see what Punakaiki and the Paparoa National Park has to offer. Conservation products and services, walks, weather, tide and track information, and an activities booking service. Open seven days.

Telephone: 03 731 1895
Fax: 03 731 1896
Address: 4294 Coast Road, Punakaiki, RD1 Runanga 7873

Stargazing exploration of the night sky

Stargazing Punakaiki – Join us for a naked eye exploration of the star studded southern night sky above the West Coast of the South Island where there is almost no light, dust or air pollution.
Your guide will introduce you to the astronomy of the southern hemisphere, identifying some of the major constellations and the path of sun, moon and planets through the signs of the zodiac. Trips take approximately 1-1.5 hours, usually beginning 30 minutes after sunset or later by arrangement. Within walking distance of your accommodation or at a nearby beach if you have your own transport. A minimum charge of $60 per trip. For groups greater than 4 people an extra $10 per person. Bring warm wind-proof clothing, hat, gloves, a torch, and binoculars if you have them.

Contact: Richard
Telephone: 03 7311 877 or mobile 0274 510 888
Address: Punakaiki

Golden Sands Horse & Wagon Tours

Travel in the footsteps of the early pioneers down the beautiful Barrytown beach, in a wagon pulled by Murphy the gentle Clydesdale.
Boil the billy over the open fire, make traditional damper bread and learn about the local history.
Tours leave around low tide. Bookings essential.

Contact: Sophie
Telephone: 03 7311 136
Address: Glen Road, Barrytown

Underworld Adventures – Underworld Rafting & GlowWorm Cave Tours

Join us on a simply magical journey of discovery in the enormous Nile River GlowWorm Caves amidst a calcitic wonderland of stalactites and stalagmites complete with unbelievable galaxies of GlowWorms.

Whether it be our award winning “Underworld Rafting”, or the more passive “GlowWorm Cave Tour” and “Nile River Rainforest Train” or even the full-on “Adventure Caving” be assured that you are in for and adventure never to be forgotten.

Telephone: 03 788 8168
Fax: 03 789 5508
Address: The Charleston Hotel, State Highway 6, Charleston
Postal: Box 7, Charleston 7865

Punakaiki Canoes

Rental kayaks/canoes – all gear supplied.
Families and beginner paddlers can enjoy the peaceful Pororari River and lagoon with its majestic limestone gorge and lush rainforest. More adventurous paddlers can explore further up this enchanting river to the lower reaches of Cave Creek.

Telephone: 03 731 1870
Fax: 03 731 1870
Address: Punakaiki
Postal: CMB 2, Punakaiki, R.D.1 Runanga 7873

Make your own jade carving

Barrytown Jade – Create your own personalised Jade carving.
Half & full day classes. Open all year round. Bookings essential. Classes from $100.

Contact: Hamish
Telephone: 03 7311 466
Address: 2726 Coast Road, Barrytown

Punakaiki Horse Treks

Horse trekking – beach riding, river crossings, spectacular scenery.
Horses and rides to suit all abilities. Nature tours into the magnificent Punakaiki valley. Located 400m south of the Pancake Rocks.

Telephone: 03 731 1839
Fax: 03 731 1838
Address: Punakaiki
Postal: CMB 47, Punakaiki, R.D.1 Runanga 7873

Conservation Volunteers

Enjoy a different and rewarding experience by volunteering with Conservation Volunteers at Punakaiki.
Learn about the environment and contribute through activities such as tree planting and seed collection.

Telephone: 03 731 1808
Address: 3916 State Highway 6, Punakaiki

Make your own bone carving

Skeleton Crew Carving Studio – We offer a fully tutored half day workshop where you can enjoy the opportunity to carve your own personalised NZ souvenir.
It’s fun and easy – anyone can do it from aged 12 and up. Choose from our many traditional designs, or create your own. We will guide you step by step through the process. You will be amazed at what you can do. Situated in Barrytown, just a short drive from Punakaiki.
$65 per person – no EFTPOS, cash only.

Contact: Karen & Dana
Telephone: 021 128 0542
Address: Barrytown

Make your own knife

Barrytown Knifemaking – Come and make a knife in our backyard – you’ll amaze yourself!
You get to forge your own blade from red hot steel, and complete your knife with native timber handle, brass bolsters and pins. We start at 9:30 am and finish around 4 pm, with drinks, lunch and snacks until around 5 pm.

Contact: Steven or Robyn
Telephone: 03 731 1053 - NZ Freephone: 0800 256433 (0800 AKNIFE)
Postal: 2662 Coast Road, Barrytown, New Zealand 7801