Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith today officially opened the new Anchorage Hut in the Abel Tasman National Park.
“The Abel Tasman, with its golden beaches and lush bush, is one of the country’s busiest Great Walks. This new 34-bunk hut will better cater for demand at the favoured stopover site of Anchorage,” Dr Smith says.
“The Abel Tasman is New Zealand’s smallest but busiest National Park. This investment of $720,000 for the new hut reflects the growth in visitor numbers and the need for better facilities to match higher visitor expectations.”
The new hut replaces a 24-bunk hut built in 1973 and has a large communal area, new toilets, modern insulation, solar-powered systems, and extensive decks.
“The old hut was closed in May and the new one built over the winter months to minimise disruption to visitors. The cost included the dismantling of the old hut, barging all materials in and out, water storage and landscaping. It’s great that the new hut is now open in time for the busy summer season,” Dr Smith says.
Anchorage Hut is the first and busiest of four huts on the 54.4 kilometre Abel Tasman Coast Track. Last year the track was walked by 29,000 people, making it one of the most popular Department of Conservation Great Walks.
“The Abel Tasman is a globally recognised National Park and these enhancements will make it even better. The Government is investing in improved visitor facilities while the Birdsong Trust is removing wilding pines and Project Janzoon removing pests. All this work will contribute to the Abel Tasman continuing to be one of New Zealand’s most loved National Parks,” Dr Smith says.
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