Coldwater Hut, Lake Rotoiti

Image: Nelson Tasman Tourism | Creative Commons


Coldwater Hut provides a good overnight tramp for families with children and those new to tramping. It can also be reached by water taxi.

Hut overview


  • Category


  • Bookings

Bookings not required - first come, first served


  • Heating
  • Mattresses
  • Toilets - non-flush
  • Water from tap - not treated, boil before use
12 bunk beds

Seasonal restrictions

During school holidays and public holidays this hut can be busy or full.

About this hut

Coldwater Hut sits at 620 m on the edge of Lake Rotoiti.

From the hut, walk to the swingbridge over the Travers River (2 hr return) or to Whisky Falls via Lakeside Track (1 hr 30 min - 2 hr return)


  • Bunks - platform (shared) bunks with mattresses
  • Water source - cold water from rain collection tank or from the lake
  • Heating - wood burner (firewood not provided)
  • Jetty
  • Space for camping outside the hut
Huts have basic facilities. You'll need to take:
  • Sleeping bag
  • Cooking stove, pots/pans and utensils
  • Toilet paper
  • Rubbish bag
  • Newspaper/firelighters and matches/lighter for the wood burner/fire
  • Torch

Getting there

Times from nearest access points and huts
  • St Arnaud via Lakeside Track and Mount Robert Road (Lake Rotoiti Circuit): 3 hr 30 min
  • Mount Robert Road end via Lakeside Track (Lake Rotoiti Circuit): 2 hr 30 min
  • Lakehead Hut: 50 min across Travers River (no bridge) or 3 hr via swingbridge up Travers valley (Lake Rotoiti Circuit)
  • John Tait Hut: 5 hr
  • Angelus Hut via Cascade Route: 6 hr

Coldwater Hut can also be reached by water taxi from the end of the lake at St Arnaud. The jetty for drop-off or pick-up is directly in front on the hut.


NZTopo50 map sheet: BS24
Grid/NZTM2000 coordinates: E1584712, N5364523


  • Adult (18+ years): $5 per night
  • Youth (11 – 17 years): $2.50 per night
  • Child/Infant (0 – 10 years): free

Before you go, buy 1 Standard Hut Ticket (blue for adults, yellow for youth) for each night's stay. Put this in the honesty box at the hut. Or buy a Backcountry Hut Pass that gives unlimited use at most Standard and Serviced huts for a 6 or 12-month period.

More about hut tickets and passes

Know before you go

Note: Coldwater Hut is a different location to Coldwater Campsite.

Nelson Lakes - thefts from vehicles

Isolated carparks are prone to theft. Don't leave any valuables in your vehicle. A bag storage facility is available at the Rotoiti/Nelson Lakes Visitor Centre. 


Rotoiti / Nelson Lakes Visitor Centre
Phone:   +64 3 521 1806
Fax:   +64 4 471 1117
Address:   View Road
St Arnaud
Postal Address:   PO Box 55
St Arnaud 7053
Whakatū / Nelson Visitor Centre
Phone:   +64 3 546 9339
Fax:   +64 4 471 1117
Address:   Millers Acre/Taha o te Awa
79 Trafalgar Street
Nelson 7010
Postal Address:   Private Bag 5
Nelson 7042
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