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“Interesting trip, but much more difficult than expected” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Driftwood Ecotours Limited

Driftwood Ecotours Limited
749 Dillons Point Road, Blenheim 7273, New Zealand
64 3 5777 651
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Owner description: Driftwood Eco-tours is operated by Will Parsons, whose family has farmed in Marlborough since the 1870s. Will has extensive local knowledge and personal contacts allowing you access to a 2200 hectare wildlife park. Tours are by 4WD vehicle, kayaking or hiking and cater your party exclusively.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Interesting trip, but much more difficult than expected”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 11, 2014

As a background, we are 30-somethings in average physical shape--but with little kayaking experience--who did an evening/moonlight kayak trip with Will.

There were positives and negatives - as most people have mentioned, Will's baked goods are great and he knows quite a lot about the area. He definitely allowed us to see a part of the country that we could not have done on our own. However, our trip was very physically demanding, we were having problems steering the kayak, paddling upstream was awful, we trekked through heavy mud (so much so that it pulled my hiking boot off) and I was exhausted by the point we got to the dinner location. At least it was beautiful.

Visited November 2013
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Oscar2NewZealand, Owner at Driftwood Ecotours Limited, responded to this review, March 14, 2014
Thank you very much for giving us this valuable feedback. We take your comments seriously. One of our mottos is ‘nature’s beauty at your own pace’ so this kind of review is not what we like to hear. If we notice people struggling in any way, we offer options such as walking as part of the kayak tour or shortening the distance to the destination point. After all it’s the journey that’s important.

Please feel free to contact us via our website and we are happy to discuss how we can make some kind of compensation to you, as we like to exceed expectations.

Will
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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98 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Blenheim, New Zealand
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
“Outstanding experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 11, 2014

We have done both the Kayak trip and the four wheel drive trip and thoroughly enjoyed both. Wonderful scenery and bird life. Will Parson has an amazing knowledge of the area and if all of this is not enough, the home made food he made was excellent. I would thoroughly recommend any tour with Will, but particularly the evening Kayak tour.

Visited April 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
1 review
“Evening Kayaking”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 1, 2014

My husband and I used a travel agent to book our trip so we really had no idea what to expect for the kayaking adventure. Will was wonderful. What we hadn't realized was that the kayaking was an all evening adventure in which Will had personally made us dinner. It was valentines Day and he even included a chocolate cake! Will was very knowledgeable about the area in which we were kayaking including the fauna and flora. He was able to answer all of our questions. By the time we returned the sun was setting and it was gorgeous to watch the sunset from the river. But the best part of the whole kayaking experience was Will's Dog Vix. He climbed aboard my kayak and spent almost the whole time enjoying the ride from the front of my kayak. He was a little dog with a huge personality! My husband and I highly recommend using Will in the future.

Visited February 2014

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Melbourne, Australia
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Three day conducted tour”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 26, 2014 via mobile

Eight friends were taken by Will on a 3 day tour through the Alpine valleys and off road tracks from Murchison to Blenheim via Hanmer Springs. Will had planned the trip, provided food and some accommodation, and provided a huge amount of information about the flaura and fauna, the Maori and pre-Maori inhabitants, and the geology of this earthquake prone area. We all had a wonderfully enjoyable time with a truly generous man.

Visited February 2014
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Nottingham
Top Contributor
220 reviews 220 reviews
36 attraction reviews
Reviews in 117 cities Reviews in 117 cities
173 helpful votes 173 helpful votes
“Night Kayaking!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 23, 2014 via mobile

Well I remember the REM song night swimming but night kayaking that is a bit different! It was in the daytime when we met at 4.00pm but by the time we got back at 10.00pm it was pitch black! The stars were stunning and to kayak just by star and moonlight was an experience I shall never forget. At the time we felt a little out of our comfort zone and wished we had been back just a little earlier but at all times we felt safe with Will who took very good care of us. On reflection the next day we realised what a wonderful experience we had that evening. We started out with a tour of the garden and the wetland around the house before setting off in the Kayaks around 6.00pm. Were paddled with the tide enjoyed a drink on a sandbank and then a lovely picnic and walk on a peninsular with quite a history. We enjoyed the birds and Wills interesting commentary. We could not set off back till 9.00pm because of the tide and had quite a sharp workout paddling the 5kms back on the ebb. We have paddled before and this might have been a little challenging for the complete novice although the younger ones might have shrugged it off!! I would definitely go again. Thank you will for a great experience and sharing this very beautiful part of Blenheim away from the vineyards. If you are an outdoors lover you should definitely think about doing this. My only feedback to Will would be to tell guests a little more what is happening as we weren't too sure what was happening at different times!!!

Visited February 2014
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