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In places, the trail passes through lush coastal forest, with rimu, nikau and beech trees. It also climbs to two saddles with superb views. In areas of mature forest, you can hear the songs of the bellbird and tui, as well as the 'swoosh' of the kereru (wood pigeon) as it flies by. Fantails, robins and tomtits flit among the manuka and kanuka trees, and weka roam the forest edges. Shags and gannets fish out in the deep water and wading birds stalk the shores for food.
The Marlborough Sounds provided good shelter and food for Maori people. There was a pa (fortress) at Nydia Bay called Opouri which means 'place of sadness'. European milling of native timber began at Nydia in the 1870s and continued until around 1920. A wharf was built, and a settlement sprung up. Little evidence remains of the logging era today.
Nydia Lodge sleeps up to fifty people (minimum four). For information on how to make a booking, contact the Department of Conservation's Picton office. This office also manages a self-registration campsite in Nydia Bay, and two campsites at Tennyson Inlet.
One of the easiest ways to do the track is to catch a water taxi from Havelock to the Kaiuma Bay end and return by shuttle bus from the northern end of the track at Tennyson Inlet. It's also possible to arrange for your pack to be transported ahead to the overnight stop at Nydia Bay.
Nydia Track is best for people with reasonable fitness. Hiking boots are recommended and, because some of the streams are not bridged, care is required when crossing them after rain.