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“Avoid "The Tui", it smells like ___! (Rhymes with "Tui")”
Review of Te Nikau Retreat

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Te Nikau Retreat
Certificate of Excellence
Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
24 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Avoid "The Tui", it smells like ___! (Rhymes with "Tui")”
Reviewed April 26, 2012

Well, I wish that I could read French, because it appears that another reviewer had an issue with "The Tui"!

The day we arrived it was raining. And yes, this cabin is in the rainforest. HOWEVER, the smell that this place emitted was foul. Truly unacceptable. The humidity was too much for the DE-humidifier to keep up with and the bugs crawling around your room made you feel as if things were crawling on you at all times. Thankfully, we only had one short night in this cabin, but the overall experience was a feeling of uncleanliness. Between the odor and the bugs and the humidity, I would truly not recommend this unit.

On a more positive note, we were able to get some laundry done and use the internet while doing so at the main building. The staff was friendly and the "retreat" was conveniently located near the Pancake Rocks.

Hate to say this, but it was by far our WORST stay of the two week trip. :-(

Room Tip: Just avoid "The Tui". Maybe the main building wouldn't be so bad???
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Ladyflyr3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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217 reviews from our community

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English first
Santa Rosa, California
Level Contributor
39 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed April 16, 2012

This was our first experience with a hostel. We stayed in an upstairs room (en suite) in the main lodge. It was cozy and we loved the view. Parking is extremely tight. There is a nice kitchen and the best bread ever is baked there each day. We bought a half loaf to take with us. There is a beautiful 8 minute walk through the rain forest to a beautiful beach. We enjoyed meeting other people. As others have noted, there are no locks on the doors. I would have preferred a lock.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Suncube
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
115 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
Reviewed April 13, 2012

we arrived late
the lady who ran the place was very nice and told us to go right into our booked rooms
this is basically a hostel - i think it's associated with HI
reasonable size kitchen
they sell cans of food, bread, muffins, if you haven't brought your own
fridge, stove, oven for you to use
no locks on the door
low water pressure
but for the price not too shabby
parking is tight
when you go to the pancake rocks, go at least 1 hour before high tide as those tide tables aren't always right and the pancake rocks don't splash well at lower tides ;(
also, bugs. freaking NZ has too many sand flies. argghhh

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
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1 Thank FredShuuz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed March 17, 2012 via mobile

We were delighted with the clean and spacious doule ensuite in the yha. The kitchen was a pleasure to use and the new manager has started providing home baked bread and muffins (for a small donation). We didn't taste better muffins on the whole of our trip. The setting is peacefully in the bush and about a 10 minute bush walk to the beach.

Stayed February 2012
Helpful?
Thank Karen R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Basel
Level Contributor
35 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed March 6, 2012

Lovely, quirky and relaxed place, we loved our little Stargazer - the only major drawback was the damp and condensation in the little hut. It was so damp we could hardly see the nightsky for condensation on the windows and it got quite cold, unfortunately this also ruined my digital camera. The kitchen in the Weka Lodge was excellently equipped, a bit croweded at times but hey, it gets you talking ;) and the bathroom was nice and clean with plenty of towels. We loved all the little extras everywhere (like the herbs). The place is smack bang in the woods and only a short walk through the bush to the beach, wonderful! Another slight disadvantage are the parking spaces - or lack of them - and no locks on the doors, not everyone has the luxury of a car to lock their stuff in. This is a lovely place but it might just be a little bit too "independant" for some travelers.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Najane
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
13 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed March 3, 2012

Punakaiki is nearly my most favourite place in the world . . .beaten only by Kinloch (near Queenstown). We stayed at Te Nikau Retreat twice during our trip for a total of 6 nights.

It is a great base, nice clean homely rooms in the main lodge, a very friendly manager who couldn't do enough to help (thank you Helen) who bakes fabulous bread and muffins everyday, clean kitchen and good shared bathroom facilities. The kitchen could do with another hob and sink though as it does get a little crowded!

The hostel is located a 5 minute drive from Punakaiki itself near the Truman track.

Punakaiki is a lovely place, the river loop walk is beautiful and the river kayaking great fun. Punakaiki horse treks is also fabulous, I'm an expereinced rider and have been here twice in 10 years, they are really good at tailoring your ride according to your experience.

I'll be back (I hope!).

Room Tip: The rooms in the main lodge are very good, the accomodation in the rainforest may be a little damp...
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  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank SouthernLassy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Swindon, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
216 reviews
84 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 142 helpful votes
Reviewed March 3, 2012

I loved this place. I had been looking for somewhere peaceful to write my travel book, and this was the idea spot. I initially stayed here for 2 nights before going to Nelson, and then coming back for almost a week.

I was given a very good deal as it was quiet for Te Nikau Lodge in the forest. This was the ideal place to just sit down and hammer out my book. I will consider this place for future writing as I never found anywhere as good as this, or quiet on my year of travel.

The staff were very helpful. Just be aware that you are a little remote here. The fresh bread and muffins for sale in the morning are excellent. Paul went out of his way to ensure that everything was right for my stay.

I would recommend this to anyone stopping at the Pancake Rocks.

Room Tip: Stay in the Rainforest if it's warm in the main lodge if it's cold
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled solo
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Helpful?
Thank thejournalist
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Te Nikau Retreat

Property: Te Nikau Retreat
Address: 19 Hartmount Place, Punakaiki 7873, New Zealand
Location: New Zealand > South Island > West Coast Region > Punakaiki
Amenities:
Beach Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 7 Specialty Lodging in Punakaiki
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2 star — Te Nikau Retreat 2*
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Unique hostel with all home comforts, lodges and cottages nestled in the native rainforest. Excellent place to relax ~ restore ~ explore. Beautiful beaches,river walks, horse trekking, kayaking close-by. Bread/muffins available for sale. FREE UNLIMITED WIFI is available in all rooms of the retreat. 3kms north of the Pancake Rocks, sign on main road Motel - Homestay - Backpackers indicates turn off. Book your Intercity Bus to the Truman Track (TRT) and you'll be only meters away from Te Nikau. ... more   less 
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