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Review Highlights
Brilliant - But do not underestimate the fitness required to enjoy this walk.

I would opt for the three day option if possible. Firstly to really enjoy what each stop has to... read more

Reviewed 3 February 2019
Indurain41
,
Christchurch, New Zealand
Fabulous but tricky in the wet!

We had a great 3 day walk. Night 1 accommodation is wonderful with lovely views. First day was... read more

Reviewed 23 December 2018
TimW592
,
Picton, New Zealand
via mobile
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All reviews stony bay day hike great walk penguin tour tramp peak farmland shelter climb flea bays shop scenery nz penguins
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Reviewed 3 February 2019

I would opt for the three day option if possible. Firstly to really enjoy what each stop has to offer. A swim at Flea bay is so welcomed after that first day hike, then the penguin tour in the evening. Most importantly the second day of walking allows much time to enjoy the delights of the accommodation at Stony bay which is not unlike a hobbiton film set - absolutely charming and magical. we are decent walkers, Routeburn, Kepler, Avalance peak and believe me if we were doing day one and two combined it would have been a serious ask and would have spoiled the experience. I'd only contemplate the two bay if I could go pack less and be exceptionally fit, in my 20's and be time pressured, other than that make the time!

The shop at Stony bay is stocked enough to make a meal, handy note is to take a long a little butter / olive oil to assist with cooking, if I'd of had that in my pack I could have rustled up a significant meal.

A fellow walker had a 9 year old child whom had a great attitude, this would be needed as he 'struggled' on some of the 'tough bits' so if you're taking a child make sure that they are prepared to step up and attack it.

Overall complete magic, an absolute gem. Other note - as we were walking in summer my children opted for decent runners / trainers as opposed to their walking boots, they said good decision.

Date of experience: February 2019
1  Thank Indurain41
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TriciaH600, Banks Track at Banks Track, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

Thanks for your thought out review, we really appreciate your time.
We will pass on your comment about the butter/olive oil to the team at Stony Bay.
Nga Mihi.

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Reviewed 23 December 2018 via mobile

We had a great 3 day walk. Night 1 accommodation is wonderful with lovely views. First day was lashing wind and rain so we were all soaked on arrival at Flea Bay but accommodation was excellent. Coastline walk on second day stunning but Track was very slippery, great views for most of the day. Stony Bay accommodation is unique and the little shop which Sonya and Mark stock is a treasure trove after 2 days tramping. 3rd day cleared and we had stunning views walking back over to Akaroa. Track was still very slippery and there is a 700m climb on day 3. (500m on day 1). This is a lovely 3 day hike but you need to be fully prepared as you would for any serious NZ hike, good boots and cold/wet weather clothing and have a decent degree of fitness.

Date of experience: December 2018
1  Thank TimW592
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TriciaH600, Banks Track at Banks Track, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

Kia ora Tim
We appreciate the review and agree that all outdoor activities in NZ require us to be prepared for all weather. Did you get to see the mists over the hilltops? I hope so, as they are so beautifully ethereal.

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Reviewed 17 October 2018

This track is just fantastic. The accommodation on all three nights was great but the final night at Stony Bay is just so quirky and interesting that it gives the track a whole new dimension. The scenery is varied including stunning coastal cliffs and bays, farmland, forests and steeper hills (which are almost big enough to be considered mountains). The bellbird song accompanied us most of the way and the penguins are an added bonus. We were also fortunate to see a few young sea lions on the rocks in Stony Bay. I highly recommend doing it in three days. The coastal scenery on the second day is just outstanding and it would be a pity to rush it. (the 2 day option would also miss the penguins in the evening at Flea Bay). This is a fairly demanding tramp with at least 500m altitude climb on each day so you do need to be fit enough for it. The second day is along the coast but you do go up and down a number of headlands which can be steep. The accommodation is much better than any DOC huts even great walk huts. We paid a bit extra for private rooms. The clean sheets and double bed were very nice but not necessary. The accommodation in the shared rooms also looked fine. It was convenient not to have to carry a sleeping bag though. I marked "suitable for kids". This would be kids over 12 who enjoy tramping and have done at least full day tramps before. This could be a good first multi day tramp.

Date of experience: October 2018
2  Thank Derek B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TriciaH600, Banks Track at Banks Track, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

Kia ora Derek
Thanks for taking the time to write us a review.
We are pleased you enjoyed your time "in our backyard" and hope to see you back sometime in the future.
Nga Mihi, Tricia

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Reviewed 8 March 2018 via mobile

A little bit of heaven. That's what this track is. Thank you to the farmer families who run it. Whether you're into 'real hiking' (sleeping on a mat or bad mattress and eating dry frozen meals) or if you're more of the glamping kind of person....this is great. Beautiful and diverse scenery but the huts and cabins are a slice of heaven. So very comfortable and just adorable actually.

At the second hut (for the 4-day walkers) you can go kayaking for free in the morning with a guide and the evening before you can join in seeing the penguins.

A must do on your trip to NZ

Date of experience: February 2018
2  Thank Jason J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tricia H, Administrator at Banks Track, responded to this reviewResponded 10 March 2018

Thanks for taking the time to write us a review. We are so pleased to hear you enjoyed your walk...and we agree, living out here on Banks Track is "a little bit of heaven".

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Reviewed 29 January 2018

Have done a few hikes around Kiwi land by now and can definitely say this one sits at the top in terms of experience. Because it's paid and private, there is relatively low foot traffic (compared to the other big hikes in NZ). Actually, scratch that, there was almost NO foot traffic. Bless. We did the 2-day option... hiking trail was perfect in terms of scenery, physical challenge, and accommodation. Both sleeping lodges had so much character. On the first night there are these little star-gazing huts to chill at... secluded from everyone else. On the 2nd night, we soaked in the outdoor bath, drinking wine (purchased from the seriously cute store on site), and watched the stars. There's also a cute little museum, and a penguin that lives under the cabin. No joke.

A must-do if you're around Akaora / Christchurch!

Date of experience: January 2018
2  Thank srahmh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tricia H, other at Banks Track, responded to this reviewResponded 3 February 2018

Thanks for taking the time to review us here on Trip Advisor. We are pleased your expectations were met...and we love that the penguin has taken up residence under one of our cabins as well, it adds to that character of the valley.

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