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Guided Nature Adventures

Join a team of naturalist guides led by conservation biologist & Wilderness Lodge founder, Dr Gerry McSweeney. Explore a natural paradise, almost unchanged from the time of first human arrival. Search for wildlife, explore untamed rainforest and wild seacoast, kayak pristine lakes and fish for brown trout.

  • take the path less travelled

    take the path less travelled

  • kayak pristine Lake Moeraki

    kayak pristine Lake Moeraki

  • discover a wildlife photography paradise

    discover a wildlife photography paradise

  • watch shy tawaki penguins

    watch shy tawaki penguins

  • join a journey of nature discovery

    join a journey of nature discovery

  • fish for renowned Moeraki brown trout

    fish for renowned Moeraki brown trout

  • handfeed river monsters, NZ longfinned eels

    handfeed river monsters, NZ longfinned eels

  • hike rugged Tasman seacoast

    hike rugged Tasman seacoast

  • explore secret rainforest waterways

    explore secret rainforest waterways

  • The Moeraki night sky will leave you in awe

    The Moeraki night sky will leave you in awe


Experience Wilderness Your Way...


Included in the tariff, our daily activity offers a fascinating introduction to natural history & wildlife.


Offered at an extra charge and great for exploring further afield


Hire your own guide for a day of fully customised nature discovery.


Explore the nature trails, kayak the lake or hire a rod and fish for brown trout.

Take an exotic and fascinating guided rainforest discovery walk during your Wilderness Lodge, NZ, holiday.

Discover the Rainforest

Join an expert naturalist guide on a journey of discovery

Complimentary Guided Activities

Each day, one complimentary guided nature activity is offered to guests. These daily trips are fun, educational and interactive. They are generally of around one hour duration and are not physically demanding.

Lake Moeraki is a paradise for active travellers, nature enthusiasts & wilderness seekers
Some of Our Complimentary Activities
The Interior of the Rainforest - A Step Back in Time Discover 1000 year old trees, orchids, and a myriad of ferns. Search for birdlife & learn about the conservation campaigns that saw these rainforests protected in perpetuity as a World Heritage site.
Freshwater Ecology of the Moeraki River Learn about the inhabitants of a waterway teaming with life. Discover tiny invertebrates that support a complex food web and handfeed giant freshwater eels
Learn Easy Kayaking Join a trained guide to paddle our safe and stable kayaks. Explore the calm waters of Lake Moeraki and watch waterbirds, spot trout and experience absolute serenity.
Night Sky & Glow Worm Discovery After dinner take a stroll to learn about the stars of the southern sky and see glow worms light up the rainforest

Kayak Lake Moeraki

experience a land unchanged from 1000 years ago

Half & Full Day Guided Trips

Explore further afield with a skilled guide and small group on our longer guided wilderness adventures. The programme will be explained on your arrival and activities don't need to be booked in advance. Duration is generally 3-5 hours. Prices range from NZ$125 - $240 per person.

Some of Our Half and Full Day Trips
Wilderness Seacoast: Penguins & Fur Seals Challenging Adventure (harder)
The Wilderness Lodge's 'signature walk' traverses dramatic seacoast. Scramble over volcanic boulders, climb through rainforest and enjoy tea beside a tumbling waterfall. See fur seals year round and penguins from Aug - early Dec.
Wilderness Seacoast: Hector's Dolphins & seashore ecology (easier)
A gentle walk along a beautiful yet rarely visited piece of coast. Discover rockpools, islands, coastal caves, and see the world's smallest marine dolphin, Fossick for wave-sculpted driftwood, jade & other gemstones.
Tawaki Penguin Discovery Walk an unmarked trail to a spectacular beach. Watch the world's third rarest penguin make their way between the Tasman Sea and their rainforest nests (Aug - early Dec. only)
Moeraki Rainforest Walk, Kayak and Beach Discovery Hike majestic floodplain forests then kayak a calm lagoon to the coast. See the world's most epiphyte (perching plant) laden tree (101 species!), and search for gemstones on deserted West Coast beach
Moeraki Pack Track & Historic Hut "Tramping" Adventure Until 1965 the Moeraki Valley could only be access on foot. This little-used trail now provides access to the upper valley. Cross a swing-bridge spanning thunderous rapids and enjoy lunch in a historic hut.

See tawaki penguins on West Coast wilderness beaches

Exclusive Guiding

You can hire a private guide for an exclusive day of wilderness discovery. The day can be fully customised to your particular interests and fitness level. This is perfect for photographers, botanists and other special interest travellers, or those wanting to pack the most into their stay. Exclusive guiding must be booked in advance.

Maximise your Wilderness Lodge experience with a fully customised day of discovery.

The charge for exclusive guiding is NZ$1450 per day for 1 or 2 people. This charge covers your personal guide, refreshments, picnic lunches, transport, conservation licence, 15% tax and equipment (kayaks etc). Additional persons are charged at NZ$390. A 50% surcharge applies on public holidays.

Explore Moeraki's wilderness seacoast while staying at the luxurious and peaceful Lake Moeraki Wilderness Lodge, NZ

West Coast Wilderness Beaches

Walk in the footsteps of early explorers

Self Guided Discovery

Wilderness Lodge Lake Moeraki offers plenty of options for exploring on your own. A network of walking trails extend through the forests, along the waterways and out to the coast. The lodge can provide maps and interpretive trail guides. A fleet of kayaks sit at the water's edge and you can paddle Lake Moeraki at your leisure.

Sometimes you just want to do your own thing, in your own time.

Fishing equipment may be hired from the lodge if you want to experience the renowned Moeraki brown trout fishery. We can provide spinning gear, organise a licence and give some pointers about where to try your luck. The chances of hooking a nice fish are good. There are no local fly fishing guides in this area.

See a gorgeous New Zealand Fernbird at Lake Moeraki on the South Island's West Coast

search for shy and secretive threatened species

  • “Stunning spot to relax & explore nature”

    The guides were wonderful and so willing to answer questions. We enjoyed the beautiful trails and have a new appreciation for the flora and fauna. The lodge itself is comfy with a welcoming elegance. food was delicious and staff pleasant and accommodating. I would return in a heartbeat.

  • “Penguins, fine food and family.”

    Myself, husband, adult children and partners had a rendezvous at the lodge. We joined the guided activities and also did our own thing. Each night we had gourmet meals and laughed a lot. If that wasn't enough we also got to see the tawaki penguins. Truly a holiday I will never forget.

  • “Holiday within a holiday.”

    The Wilderness Lodge is a unique holiday experience . Lovely rooms with very friendly and helpful staff. Excellent meals. Lots of activities from kayaking, to walking forest trails to trips with an expert guide. The hosts are excellent, very knowledgeable and committed to environmental work.


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Wilderness Lodge Lake Moeraki is located on the South Island’s West Coast between the Glaciers and Wanaka/Queenstown. It is a comfortable 5.5 hours drive from Wilderness Lodge Arthur’s Pass and 3.5 hours from Queenstown Airport. We have driving notes available for the journey north or south.

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Wilderness Lodge Arthur’s Pass is located on Highway 73 between Christchurch and the West Coast. It is less than 2 hours drive from Christchurch and the towns of Greymouth & Hokitika and a comfortable 5.5 hours to Wilderness Lodge Lake Moeraki. The TranzAlpine train stops in Arthur’s Pass and transfers to/from the lodge are available.

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