Heaphy 5 Day Classic Guided

The Five Day Guided Walk on the Heaphy Track allows you to experience this fantastic trail with shorter walking days than the 4 day option, knowing your return transport to the track, hut bookings, all of your meals are arranged for you.

From NZD 2195.00 pp.


  • Land transport from Kohaihai to Nelson
  • No single supplement for solo travellers
  • Land transport from Nelson to Brown Hut
  • Luggage transfers to Kohaihai (if required)
  • Gourmet meals prepared by your guide the whole way through
  • Professional, personal and caring guiding and interpretation all the way
  • A generous, healthy and energy-filled “snack pack” to nibble on during your trip
  • Accommodations during your walk (4 nights in DOC huts - Perry Saddle Hut, Saxon Hut, James Mackay Hut and Heaphy Hut)
  • Generally departs each Monday during the season from October to May (other departure dates may be available on request) - subject to minimum numbers

PLEASE NOTE: The accommodation on the track is in Department of Conservation huts – these are basic, but comfortable and must be shared with other walkers. Guests carry their own pack containing personal clothing and sleeping bag. Guides carry all food, cooking utensils and safety equipment.


Day 1 – Brown Hut to Perry Saddle Hut (approx. 17.5km 5 Hours)

You will be picked up early this morning from your Nelson accommodation and travel to Brown Hut (which is the beginning of the track) ready for a final briefing and the start of your walk.

The track gradually climbs through podocarp and beech forest to Flanagan’s Corner (the highest point on the track at 915m). En route, grand views of Aorere Valley open up, with even Mt Taranaki visible on a clear day. From Flanagan’s Corner, it’s a gentle stroll on to Perry Saddle Hut, which is 880 metres above sea level

Day 2 – Perry Saddle Hut to Saxon Hut (approx. 12.4km 4 hours)

This is a gentler day of around only 4 hours walking. The track passes through kamihi and beech forest before reaching the wide expanse of tussock covered land known as the Gouland Downs. The track carries on down to Cave Brook, passing the famous ‘boot pole’, where trampers have tied their old boots. Past ‘the enchanted forest’, a limestone outcrop with caves and waterfalls, you will continue over the final part of the Downs and climb gently to Saxon Hut

Day 3 – Saxon Hut to Mackay Hut (11.8 kms approx. 3-4 hours)

This morning you will head off across the Saxon downs, crossing several bridged rivers along the way, if you’re lucky enough you might even see some Whio or blue duck. You will continue to climb towards the Mackay Downs. The track here is also interesting as you will start to see the impressive pink coloured Karamea granite, a crystal-rich mix of quartz, mica and feldspar. We will also be passing by outcrops of giant granite boulders emerging from the tussock. The view from Mackay hut is spectacular and allows us to see right down to the west coast and Heaphy river mouth

 Day 4 – Mackay Hut to Heaphy Hut (20.5 kms approx. 6 hours)

Leaving Mackay Hut this morning you will head off to an even more impressive location, the Heaphy River Mouth! From the hut you transect a great cross section of New Zealand flora, from sub alpine species on the tops, through stunted beech, and then down into ancient Podocarp forest. There are some great glimpses of the river as we head down this section, and as the track gets lower we also start to see the magnificent nikau palms that this section of the West Coast is famous for. Suddenly we reach Lewis hut at the confluence of the Heaphy and Lewis, and its packs off, and time to put your feet up while the guides organize another scrumptious lunch. The environment from here undergoes yet another drastic change; as we meander along the river side the towering Nikau Palms give the surrounds a truly tropical feel. Here at the river mouth we are greeted with the impressive west coast beach and its rolling surf. 

Day 5 – Heaphy Hut to Kohaihai (approx. 16.2km – 5 hours)

We walk from the Heaphy Hut along a coastline studded with nikau groves to the track’s end at the Kohaihai River. Some beach walking is possible at low tide. This is a spectacular coastal walk – rated as one of NZ’s best day walks – to complete your Heaphy adventure. Our van meets you at the Kohaihai River mouth from where we transfer you back to Nelson, with stops for lunch and afternoon tea on the way home

Arrive back in Nelson at approximately 7 pm on Day 5

2022/2023 Departure Dates:

Departures run between October 2022 and May 2023, but most dates are now booked out - please email us for more information.