I booked onto the Wilsons Abel Tasman 3 day walk to get away from the city for a bit, see a great part of the country and also to tune out the brain and I got more than that little tick list.
I am truly spoilt for camping again, Wilsons met me at the airport bang on the time they said they would, my bag was taken and put into the truck by the nice staff member. We were a small group and of that small group only 6 would do the whole track walking, others kayaked day 2 and 3.
After sorting my suitcase into a lodge bag and my mobile phone was left behind (my choice as wanted to truly get away but you can get signal on the tracks in places) we were off to Kai Teri Teri super quick for the ferry to the first stop. Inspecting the lunch bag given I knew we were off to a great start, foody heaven. all thoughts of losing some weight on the trip gone and this was true the whole trip breakfasts that had cereal, fruit, tea/toast and a cooked part. Lunch bags that more than covered your requirements plus some for the next days and the dinners were brilliant.
On the ferry ride to Totaranui I got to know my fellow group members a mix of kiwi, English, Swedish and Candian oh and two from Guernsey. Wilsons give you a cup to use on the trip, and to keep after along with your lodge bag, this cup gets you free hot drinks on the boat and there are also snacks available to purchase but you won't need to do that as there is heaps in your lunch bag.
Nothing better after a long days walking to arrive at accommodation and be welcomed by smiley staff. your bag waiting and not only a great room with all home comforts, including electric blankets, but hot water for a super shower.
My favourite lodge was on day one where you stay at the Meadowbank Homestead, I just wanted to stop here and hope to one day return for more than a one night stay. Just beautiful, great modern bathrooms, plenty of hot water, fantastic food (salmon followed by lemon tart and ice cream!)
Being a solo I was concerned about who I would be walking with but everyone was lovely, all staff made me feel welcomed and comfortable and the guide Marios made sure we went at a good pace for our group.
Also being a solo I was a bit perturbed that at the first overnight stop I could only order a whole bottle of wine ($23 for the one I ordered great price) not normally a big drinker I thought oh well I am on holiday and write it off, its not over inflated prices after all. Marios came to find me in the morning to see if I wanted my wine bottle put in my boat bag to go to the next lodge, super, wine for dinner on night two as well :0)
I am now spoilt forever, I am now a fully fledged pamper tramper and cannot rate Wilsons trip highly enough, I'm looking forward to when friends/family visit to NZ and I can go do this trip again.
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