Things to Do

Situated on the western edge of Mount Aspiring National Park, Haast has been declared the Southwest New Zealand UNESCO World Heritage Area giving international recognition to the outstanding natural values of the area. This place is home to magical scenery with spectacular beaches, rich rainforests and towering mountains, a visit to Haast is a must-do for all.

From jet boating, hunting, fishing to tramping, there are many ways to get out there and explore the beauty and wilderness of Haast. While you are staying with us, we have made a list of the best things to do to ensure you have an unforgettable experience. There are activities and tourist attractions for all ages and budgets.

Walking Tracks

Hapuka Estuary Walk
(1km loop – 20 Mins)

Lake Ellery Walking Track
(3km return – 1-2 hours)

Wharekai-te Kou walking track
(2km return, 20 minutes)

Smoothwater Bay walking track (9.4km return, 3 hours)

Stafford Bay route
(16km return, 10 hours)

Tours & Adventure Activities

Learn from our local and highly experienced Jet Boat driver/guides about the physical attributes of this remarkable glacial valley, where temperate rainforest thrives.

For more information, visit:
https://www.haastriver.co.nz

Waiatoto River Safari is New Zealand’s only ocean to alps safari, showcasing some of the country’s most dramatically changing landscape and exceptional pioneering history.

For more information, visit:
https://www.riversafaris.co.nz

HeliServices NZ is an experienced helicopter sightseeing company providing you with a diverse range of South Island scenic helicopter flights and private charters in some of New Zealand’s most spectacular alpine and coastal scenery.

Book now at:
https://www.heliservices.nz

Dining & Shopping

The Haast area is comprised of small settlements including the township, Haast Junction, Haast Beach, Okuru. Hannahs Clearing, Neils Beach and Jackson Bay.

Local Services in the Haast township include two general stores, two service stations and a mechanic workshop, two bars/restaurants, a cafe and a gift shop.

Take a rest from exploring and refuel by enjoying the local cuisine. Haast is famous for its seafood. We would recommend sampling whitebait and crayfish or ordering the classic fish and chips.

The Cray Pot

The Esplanade
Jackson Bay
03 750 0035
Hours: Summer 11am - 3:30pm

Frontier Cafe & Bar

Cnr SH6 and Jackson Bay Road
Haast
03 357 1919
Hours: Daily, 8am - 8pm

Hard Antler Bar & Restaurant

5 Marks Road
Haast Township
03 750 0034
Hours: Daily, 11am - Late

Haast Food Centre & Cafe

5 Pauareka Road
Haast
03 750 0030
Hours: Mon-Fri, 10am - 6pm

Santana Gift Shop

5 Tahutahi Road
Haast Township
03 750 0791

Other Activities

If you’re a keen hunter or fisherman just ask any of the locals for recommendations. If you would like to take it to the next level, book a heli-trip with a group of friends to some of the best spots.

The Roar hunting period runs for approximately four weeks across March and April. Apply for your hunting block at DOC online by the end of September. Apply Online

Whitebait season runs from September to November and there is plenty of space for everyone, just take your pick from the Haast; Waiatoto, Turnbull, Arawhata or Okuru rivers.

The annual Haast Whitebait Festival is a great day out for the whole family. The festival hosts markets and food stalls, along with family activities for all. In the evening the festivities move to the Frontier Bar & Restaurant where everyone can enjoy drinks, food, and live entertainment.

For anyone looking for a challenge, Haast hosts an annual Half Marathon fun run. Suitable for the whole family with options to walk, run or bike. The 21km course starts at the Heartland Hotel, taking you through the township and the new community-built Kokako walking track. Visit the Haast Marathon Facebook Page for updates and future event details.

Or if you’re looking for something a bit more relaxing, grab a coffee in the township and take a stroll along Haast Beach.