Tōtaranui early morning

Image: Samuel Mann | Creative Commons


Camp next to the clear waters and golden sands of Tōtaranui beach at the northern end of the Abel Tasman National Park. It's a great place to relax on the beach, swim, kayak, fish or explore native bush on one of the nearby tracks.


Campsite overview


  • Boat
  • Campervan
  • Car
  • Caravan


  • Coastal


  • Category


  • Bookings

Bookings required


  • Boat launching
  • Campfires permitted (except in fire bans)
  • Dump station
  • Non-powered/tent sites
  • Shower - cold
  • Toilets - non-flush
  • Water from tap - treated, suitable for drinking
  • Wheelchair accessible with assistance
269 non-powered/tent sites


  • Boating
  • Fishing
  • Kayaking and canoeing
  • Mountain biking
  • Swimming
  • Walking and tramping

Seasonal restrictions

From 21 December – 26 January there is a minimum charge, and restrictions on the length of stay.

Fires permitted in designated fire places and only if there is no regional fire ban. Check for fire bans before you light. 

Dog access

No dogs

About this campsite

Campsite details

Tōtaranui is a large campground catering for up to 850 people. Sites are across the camp road from the Tōtaranui beach, and alongside the estuary. Camping on the beach side of the camp road for Abel Tasman Coast Track walkers only.

The campground is divided into 23 zones separated by shelter belts, with six modern amenities blocks spread throughout. View a map of campground zones (PDF, 2,744K).

Tōtaranui 'Ngarata' Homestead functions as an education centre and may be booked for private stays when not used by school groups.

Rules for Tōtaranui Campground.

Facilities and services

Camp office
  • From 1 December to mid-April, the office is open 8 am to 4 pm. Outside this period check the door for hours.
  • Eftpos payment is available during office hours only. 
  • The office has maps and a pay phone, and sells items such as rubbish bags, ice, insect repellent, sunscreen, postcards, phone cards, and snack items.
  • Staff on site all year.

Outside of a fire ban, there are designated fireplaces where you can light fires. Bring your own firewood.

No rubbish facilities
Pack in, pack out

Be prepared to manage and remove your own rubbish.

You must remove all rubbish and recycling. The nearest transfer station is at 45 Scott Road, off Abel Tasman Drive, 40 minutes from Tōtaranui. 

During peak season food scraps are collected daily from the campsite by staff for composting.

Getting there

Nelson to Tōtaranui is about two and a half hours. Take SH6 south out of Nelson and turn onto SH60 (the Coastal Highway) once past Richmond. Follow SH60 over the Takaka Hill to Takaka.

From Takaka follow signs to Pohara and Tata Beach, which will lead you past the Abel Tasman Memorial and onto Tōtaranui. The last 12 km is a narrow, winding, unsealed road.

Camp gates are locked overnight. Opening times as follows.

  • 1 October to 31 March: 7:30 am to 8:30 pm
  • 1 April to 30 September: 7:30 am to 6:30 pm

There is a seasonal bus service, and daily water taxis from Kaiteriteri, Marahau and many of the beaches in the park. See commercial operators for Abel Tasman National Park.


NZTM2000 coordinates: E1600414, N5481379
Latitude: -40.81860657, Longitude: 173.00490919


  • Adult (18+ years): $15 per night
  • Child (5 - 17 years): $7.50 per night
  • Infant (0 - 4 years): free


The DOC/NZMCA Campsite Pass can be used at this campsite except between the Friday before Christmas and the end of Waitangi weekend. In 2020/2021, this is 18 December 2020 to 9 February 2021.

To pay with your NZMCA pass, create/update your account on our booking system. Under 'Apply for a discount', select 'NZMCA Pass Holder' and upload a scan of your pass. Once we've verified your pass, it will be automatically applied when you make a booking.

Backcountry Hut Passes cannot be used at this campsite.


2020/2021 bookings

Bookings will open at 9:30 am on Wednesday 1 July 2020, for stays from 1 July 2020 to 31 October 2020. Bookings will open at 9:30 am on Wednesday 5 August 2020 for stays from 1 November 2020 to 30 June 2021.

You'll need an account on our booking system for campsites, huts and lodges to make a booking - create an account from Tuesday 23 June 2020.

Bookings are required all year. Book well in advance between Christmas and February.

Book Tōtaranui Campground online.

A $10 service fee applies to all phone, email and in-person bookings.

From 21 December to 26 January: Minimum fee $30 per night with a maximum stay of 14 nights.

Your booking will be for a site, which will be allocated or selected on arrival.


Water activities
  • Swim or snorkel in the clear waters at Tōtaranui beach.
  • Take the kids in to the safe waters of the estuary when the tide is in.
  • Explore the estuary by kayak, go waterskiing or sail out for some fishing.  
  • Explore one of the several short walks in the area such as the Puketea Walk.
  • Take one of the longer walks in the area such as the Headlands Track for great views over Tōtaranui.
  • Walk south along the coast to Goat Bay and on to Awaroa for lunch at the Awaroa Lodge. Walk or catch a boat back.
  • Children can earn a free Toyota Kiwi Guardians medal. 

See Totaranui walks.

Mountain biking

In the area

The nearest shops are in Pohara (25 minutes away). Pohara has a shop, takeaways and a good choice of cafes. 

Takaka is the nearest town (45 minutes away) and has a supermarket, petrol stations, information centre, banks, cafes and restaurants, museum, art and craft galleries and a movie theatre.

Awaroa Lodge is a 2.5–3 hour walk south on the Abel Tasman Coast Track or a short boat ride away, and is open daily with both a cafe and restaurant.

Know before you go

  • Mobile phone coverage is unreliable at Tōtaranui.
  • The busiest period is between Christmas and mid-February. Visiting mid-February through to Easter is a good option as there are generally fewer people.
  • Coincide your visit with local events such as the Golden Bay A & P Show in mid-January.

All drone use must be authorised by DOC

A concession is required to fly a drone on any public conservation land.


Tōtaranui Campground
Phone: +64 3 528 8083
Address: 62 Commercial Street
PO Box 166
Takaka 7142
Email: totaranui@doc.govt.nz
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