Nau mai ki Kaiteriteri
Welcome to Kaiteriteri

Waka - a truly unique experience

Waka (Māori canoes) are the living expression of a people who sailed the Pacific Ocean for thousands of years. As the only form of transport across oceans and waterways, waka were vital for travel and trade.

By paddling in our double-hulled (waka tuarua) or single-hulled outrigger canoes (waka ama), you share in New Zealand's treasured heritage. Waka is an inclusive experience where everyone can feel the joy of working as part of a team.

We begin and end all our trips with a blessing (karakia) for protection. You will learn the etiquette (tikanga) associated with waka before becoming familiar with the boat and embarking on our journey (haerenga ).

Come join us for a truly unique cultural experience that's suitable for all ages.

Kaiteriteri Split Apple Rock Tours

Split Apple Rock Paddle
Toka Ngawhā

Our most popular trip!

Paddle along the coast to Split Apple Rock –Toka Ngāwha, a beautiful, atmospheric place and one of the Abel Tasman coastline's most iconic spots. It's an easy, two-hour return trip, and by the end you'll understand how empowering membership of a waka crew can be.

Cost:

Adult $90pp
Children 3-14yrs $60
Family deal: $250 (2 adults, 2 children)

Light refreshment: Included

GROUP BOOKING DEAL: 8+people

Trip details:

Paddling time: approx 2h
Experience: not necessary
Check-in time: 9am
Finish: 12 noon
Booking: required prior to day for departure

Group-waka-abel-tasman

Group Journeys
Haerenga ā-rōpū

Let us create a unique experience for your group!

We can design a special experience for your school, business, iwi or, tour group.

Paddle as a group along the coast, try your hand at racing, or ask us to design a customised adventure, especially for your crew.  Watch fresh air, exercise and co-operation work their wonders. Each double-hulled waka seats a maximum of 11 adults per waka.

Email us for more details.

Trip details:

From an hour to several days—whatever floats your waka! No experience necessary. By the end of the journey, everyone will be paddling like old hands.

Meet our family – whanau

Our family loves waka, the outdoors, tikanga Māori (correct Māori etiquette) and sharing these things with others. Our community is at the heart of what we do and we are passionate about uplifting rangitahi (young people) and supporting healthy lifestyles.

Todd is heavily involved in training rangatahi for waka ama competitions and Lee-Anne does a lot of work with waka and local community groups.  We invite you to join us and help us to help support our community's growth and empowerment.

—Lee-Anne and Todd Jago, with daughters Awatea and Aria

Let's get ready!

Treat yourself and your family or friends to a new adventure that's as old as civilisation itself. Feel the breeze on your face, the drag of the water against your paddle and the hugely rewarding sense of  working together as one. Paddling waka connects you to a rich cultural heritage but it's also great fun. Prepare to get hooked!

waka-group-abel-tasman-national-park

Caring for people

Manaaki tangata

Tours Kaiteriteri, Maori Toursim Award
doc-approved-logo-223
outdoors-mark
Toruism Kaiteriteri Qualmark Silver Award Logo
Tours Kaiteriteri, Tourism Export Council Logo
Kaiteriteri Tours Smart Operator Logo

Your safety comes first

Waka Abel Tasman was the first New Zealand waka business to be externally audited under Adventure Act regulations and is a certified adventure company. We put a very high value on safety. With over 40 years' combined experience in the adventure tourism industry, you know you're in good hands.

Before each departure, we will brief you on basic water safety and paddle instruction, and provide ongoing care throughout your trip.

About your hosts

Todd has competed in waka ama at both national and international levels and was a member of the team that took gold at the IVF Va'a World Sprint Championships in May 2016. He is a technical expert in his field.

Lee-Anne has 20 years' experience in guiding, instructing and managing adventure tourism enterprises and has also competed in waka ama at both national and international levels.

What to bring for your waka experience

  • Shorts
  • Quick dry top and/or thermal top
  • Warm fleece
  • Rain coat
  • Water shoes or barefeet is fine
  • Water
  • Sunblock
  • Sun hat, sunglasses
Split Apple Rock Tour, Kaiteriteri

FAQs

Will I get wet?

Most probably. You will get wet feet getting into the waka and there could be splashing from sea and paddle. It's all part of the fun!

Why do I need to take water?

It is wise to hydrate when in the waka. You might be having too much fun to notice that you're exercising but there is some physical effort involved, so it's a good idea to have water handy.

Will I need to wear a lifejacket?

Yes, that is part of our safety procedure. We supply lifejackets.

Do I have to be young and fit to do this?

Paddling a waka is something you can do sitting down! Because a waka team shares the work, age and physical fitness aren't as important as they might be in other activities. Just relax, do what you can and enjoy being part of a team.

What happens if the weather's bad?

Please refer to our Cancellation Policy.

I have a bad back. Will I find paddling uncomfortable?

Sitting in a waka is comfortable and easier on the hamstrings than sitting in a kayak. There are no back rests, however. Only you know the extent of your back issues, so only you can assess whether or not paddling in a waka will aggravate the problem. If you are unsure, we recommend caution.

I don't know anything about Maori culture and I'm concerned I might offend someone

Please don't worry! By sharing tikanga Māori (correct Māori etiquette), we want to give you a wonderful, cultural experience. It's easy, relaxed and not at all confronting.

What people say

Waka Family Tours, Kaiteriteri, Abel Tasman National Park

"We had a wonderful day on Sunday.  Definitely achieved what I hoped. You have a fantastic business - very authentic."

Linda

House of Travel, Motueka

"It is wonderful to be working in partnership with Waka Abel Tasman, supporting rangatahi (teenagers) to reach their potential."

Mark Bruce-Miller

Manager Whenua Iti Outdoors

"Would you recommend this trip and why? Yes definitely because it was so much fun."

Cella Droppers

Motueka 11 years (4 November 2016)

"I had such a great time paddling back from Anchorage. I am delighted to see you encouraging others to 'give waka a go'. Your professionalism, knowledge and experience make the trip."

Jan Blythe

Waka paddler, Nelson

Manaaki moana, manaaki tangata, haere whakamua

Care for the sea, care for the people, move forward as one.