Kaikoura, Canterbury and the West Coast, New Zealand
At a Glance
With fresh ingredients locally sourced from the surrounding Otago region, you can expect hearty homecooked meals to accompany a busy day of adventuring in Kaikoura.
Be astounded by the views from your treetop suite, where snow-capped mountains soar on one side and, on a clear day, the sea can be seen on the other.
As you take a dip in the lodge’s infinity pool, look out for wild deer who often frequent the neighbouring field.
On cooler evenings, sit by the roaring fireplace in your room or treehouse - with a glass of shiraz in hand, of course.
Located a 10-minute drive from the town of Kaikoura, you are just moments away from the country’s most populous whale and dolphin hotspots.
Best time to Visit
Good time to visit
Average time to visit
The climate in New Zealand is incredibly pleasant, with warm and balmy summers and cold crisp winter months with wonderful clear, blue skies. The warmer high-season months of November to April are perfect for outdoor exploration. The colder months of June to August are the best time to ski.
Both North and South Islands are drier on the east coast, rather than on the west, where mountain ranges act as a trap for the moisture-rich winds from the Tasman Sea. It is also worth remembering that it is usually a few degrees cooler on the South Island than the North Island and as New Zealand has a maritime climate, the weather can change rapidly.
To start planning your holiday to Hapuku Lodge
Designed as a contemporary luxury country lodge, Hapuku Lodge and Tree Houses sit at the foot of South Island's spectacular Kaikoura Ranges, looking out over the rugged Pacific Coast of New Zealand - home to an abundance of marine life.
Hapuku Lodge is idyllically set outside the seaside town of Kaikoura, in one of South Island's most spectacular settings. Designed by a family of architects and builders, Hapuku is a contemporary country lodge with suites and rooms in the main lodge building, a freestanding two bedroom suite in the grounds with its own kitchen and a collection of unique wood clad treehouses.
Each Tree House is architecturally stunning, perched high in a native Manuka grove with arresting panoramic views of the dramatic surroundings of the mountains, ocean and the lodge's own deer park. With only the most comfortable furnishings, natural wood accents that echo your tree-top location and modern amenities, a stay in these luxury Tree Houses makes for a totally unique experience.
The lodge itself serves delicious contemporary seasonal cuisine, locally sourced produce and a fantastic selection of fine New Zealand wine. The relaxed open plan dining room has an alpine feel, with simple wooden furniture, timber floors and cosy fireplace in winter and beautiful garden for summer dining. The main lodge houses a wonderful pool for sunny days and a roaring log fire, perfect for those colder winter months.
The lodge is positioned between the often snow capped mountains and the ocean and is a wonderful base for exploring the Kaikoura and East Coast area. Kaikoura is famous for its marine life and offers whale watching and the chance to swim with wild dolphins, making it the perfect destination for those with an adventurous streak.
The two Lodge Suites, Hapuku Room and Lodge Room are in the main lodge and are ultra spacious with hand made furniture, separate sleeping and living areas (in the suites & Hapuku Room), deep soaking tubs and a patio or balcony. The Olive House Suite is a spacious freestanding suite with kitchen, spa tub, fireplace and 360 degree view and can sleep two adults and three children. The six one- and two-bedroom wood clad treehouses are in the canopy of a tree 10m high, with picture windows and striking views. All rooms and suites other than the lodge room feature: wood burning fireplace, balcony or patio terrace, two person soaking tub, rain shower, heated flooring, TV and DVD player, WiFi, air-conditioning, fridge, tea and coffee facilities.
Children are very welcome to come and stay in the two-bedroom Family Tree Houses and the Olive House Suite, which has its own kitchen and can accommodate up to three children. Children under 12 years are not permitted in the main lodge rooms. A children's menu is available in the restaurant and highchairs, packed lunches and the heating of baby food are all easily organised. Kids will enjoy mountain biking and nature walks in and around the hotel's grounds as well as the hotel's own deer stud.
Continental or cooked breakfasts and three course dinners are created in the lodge kitchen with a focus on fresh, local fish and meats, with many of the vegetables coming from its own gardens. The lodge has a great bar and picnics can be ordered for day trips. There is a 25 metre outdoor lap pool and hot tub with seating area and in room spa treatments can be arranged.
Mountain bikes are provided free of charge and it is an easy ride to the acclaimed surf beach of Mangamaunu Bay. The eco-marine town of Kaikoura is a 15-minute drive away and a great base for whale watching, swimming with dolphins. The local area has some great wineries, cafes and restaurants for you to visit too.
Charlotte Winter (Staff)
Located just a 15-minute drive from the centre of Kaikoura, Hapuku Lodge is a charming retreat, perfect for guests looking to embrace the great outdoors. The property is made up of a main lodge (which houses a number of rooms and suites), as well as four fabulous tree houses, which make for a very unique stay. The tree houses are equipped with a large and very comfortable double bed, a deep Jacuzzi bath, and a wood burner. In terms of food, you're certainly in for a treat here. There's a real emphasis placed on locally sourced produce and, better yet, homemade products such as the thick yoghurt served at breakfast.
As well as enjoying the comforts of your tree house or taking a dip in the onsite outdoor pool, there are lots of beautiful walks to be had from the lodge - but also make sure you give yourself a enough time to go swimming with dolphins or on a whale watching tour.
Anna Chaplin (Staff)
This is such a unique and charming lodge. I fell in love with the tree houses as soon as I arrived and didn't want to leave. They are so cosy and have everything you need in them to be able to fully relax and enjoy your stay. Outside they have a wonderful communal pool with stunning views out across the mountains, which is perfect for families and couples a like to relax and take in their surroundings. Chris who manages the lodge is lovely and nothing is too much trouble and his wife Fiona, who is head chef, creates wonderful refined home cooked meals and sources all of her food locally. They even have their own cows and Fiona makes her own natural yoghurt, which is the best yoghurt I have ever had. If you're heading to Kaikoura definitely make sure you get a stay in at Hapuku Lodge, you won't regret it!
Sarah Rowan (Staff)
In a breath-taking setting amongst green rolling hills and the backdrop of the Pacific Ocean and the rugged snow capped Seafacing Kaukoura Mountain Range, sits Hapuku Lodge and Treehouses. It is so hard to drag yourself away from the panoramic views, with deer frolicking on the green fields around you, that you would be content with just sitting on your balcony and taking it all in. However the area of Kaikoura boasts so much more than stunning scenery. It is home to exceptional marine life; a place where Sperm Whales can be spotted all year round, and you can also spot seals, dolphins, albatross and blue penguins. It has been termed the Marine Serengeti, with access to the Marine Big 5, plus fantastic bird life.
Hapuku is an eco lodge, which is architecturally unique with the Treehouse accommodation proving extremely popular as a great fun and impressive place to stay. There are a variety of rooms at the main house, for those who may not fancy these dizzy heights.
Katie Kennard (Staff)
This lodge is very unique in the sense that its eco concepts are at the forefront of their focus however they do not allow this to interfere with the luxury aspects of the lodge. Designed by owner Tony Wilson and his brother, the tree houses are also complimented by the spectacular surrounding environment, nestled between the mountains and the Pacific Ocean, surrounded by thousands of Deer in their locally ran deer park. All the rooms have under floor heating from solar panels on the roofs, jet baths with fantastic views out to sea. All the rooms have log burners and a charming sitting area overlooking the mountains. This is a perfect place to relax after a day enjoying the marine life, including watching whales, seals, albatross, dolphins and penguins.
Olivia Smith (Staff)
The idea of staying in a tree house with magical snow-capped mountains as a backdrop had me entirely overexcited and my stay at Hapuku didn't disappoint! These rather grown-up tree houses sit high in a native Manuka grove, with the most gorgeous panoramic views of the mountains and out to sea. On a chilly winter afternoon, my wood-burning fire was lit for me and I curled up in my beautiful leather chair admiring the view - the staff here at Hapuku look after your every need. The food here is locally sourced and is absolutely delicious - I would highly recommend trying some 'koura' (the crayfish that gives the area its name) if you have the chance, washing it down with some local wine. Then climb the stairs to your tree-top home and curl up in one of the most comfortable beds I have ever slept in, complete with a hand-carved Kauri head board - just to reinforce the arboreal ambience of your abode.
Dolphin Encounter off the coast of Kaikoura - Shared
Make one of life's dream a reality and not only watch dolphins in the wild but get the chance to swim with them as well, just off the coast of Kiakoura.
Kayaking with Seals in Kaikoura - Shared
Each year in Kaikoura New Zealand fur seal pups can be seen resting and playing in the fresh water while their mothers are out at sea fishing. Enjoy a guided kayaking excursion to watch these beautiful creatures in their natural habitat.
TranzAlpine Train - Christchurch to Greymouth - Shared
The fertile farmlands of the Canterbury Plains, deep gorges and glacial rivers await as you take one of the world’s most iconic train journeys from Christchurch to Greymouth.
Whale watching in Kaikoura - Shared
Take to the seas off the coast of Kaikoura to search for New Zealand's marine giants. Sperm Whales, Orca and migrating Humpbacks all frequent the inky depths hunting for squid in the Hikurangi Trench.
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Location & directions
Kaikoura, Canterbury and the West Coast, New Zealand
Hapuku Lodge is situated just off State Highway 1 at the intersection of Station Road, 12kms North of Kaikoura. Kaikoura sits halfway between Blanheim and Christchurch on the East Coast of New Zealand’s South Island.
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