The Kaikoura Coast Track – is this New Zealand’s finest two-day private walk?

New Zealand is blessed with a plethora of “private walking tracks” – trails established by income-diversifying farmers on their land. It is the “boutique tramping” option, combining luxuries of comfortable accommodation, hot showers, home-made meals and even baggage transport with the chance to escape the crowds and get off the beaten track.

Check out my comparison of two of New Zealand’s best-loved private walks here

The  Kaikoura Coast Track, a 26km route along a “hidden coastline”, is described by the owners as the finest two-day private walk in New Zealand – and they are probably right. I walked it in 2016 and loved every minute. Think Hector’s dolphins playing in the surf; making virgin trails of footsteps on a cliff-lined beach; cute fur seals dozing on the grey sand; and glorious views of the distant Kaikoura mountain ranges. (Want more New Zealand tramping inspiration? Read my guide on how to plan a Kiwi hiking pilgrimage here)

I was sad to hear in November that a devastating 7.8-magnitude earthquake hit the Kaikoura region – but, thankfully, the disaster did not affect the trail and it remains open to trampers. I hope people still visit the track and support the local community. Here are 14 photos of why they (and you) should:

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Amazing coastal scenery

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A fur seal resting on a deserted beach

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A charming site for lunch amongst coastal bush

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Tree stumps that are thousands of years old

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Comfortable and charming accommodation

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Even more epic coastal scenery

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It was a great view!

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Boiling up a much-needed caffeine boost

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Feasting on the views on day two of the hike

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Sharing the quiet beach with one other creature

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Tasty treats: awesome personal touch from the owners at the finish of the trail, leaving out fresh lemonade and biscuits

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A tiny Hector’s dolphin playing in the waves

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Th perfect place for some tranquility and self-reflection