BUG New Zealand travel guidebook
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BUG New Zealand travel guidebook
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BUG New Zealand travel guidebook

Destination guides > Pacific Islands > New Zealand > West Coast > Karamea


Karamea is a meagre settlement at the north eastern corner of the South Island. An old mining town, it is just recently gaining recognition among backpackers as an unspoilt area of natural beauty perfect for a relaxing getaway. It is surrounded by lush rainforest and sandy beaches, and it is a good base for exploring the exquisite Oparara Basin and Kahurangi Gorge. There is great hiking, swimming, kayaking, fishing and surfing in the area. Its isolation means that facilities are limited for backpackers, so it is best to bring food supplies if you are on a strict budget. There is a supermarket and an excellent hostel in town and the area is full of attractions, so it is worth spending a few days to explore.

Practical information

Karamea Information & Resource Centre

Bridge Street, Market Cross, Karamea
Tel (03) 782 6652
Website www.karameainfo.co.nz

Coming & going

The Karamea Express (tel (03) 782 6757) run a shuttle bus that picks up hikers coming off the Heaphy Track at the Kohaihai River Mouth, and takes them down to Karamea and Westport.

Hostel accommodation

Rongo Backpackers

130 Waverly Street, Karamea
Tel (03) 7826 667

No booking fee when you book this hostel online at bug.co.uk

Wanapeka Backpackers Retreat & Farmstay

Atawhai Farm, Wangapeka
Tel (03) 782 6663

No booking fee when you book this hostel online at bug.co.uk

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