The Ultimate Luxury Treehouse Retreat in the West Coast Wilderness


Discover peace and quiet amid the native forest in Nelson Creek on the mighty West Coast. Te Aka Treehouse Native Forest Retreat is the ultimate luxury getaway in New Zealand. This modern escape is nestled within an old podocarp forest and regenerating red beech forest on a unique, private property. Backing onto conservation land and Gow’s Creek, this property is a slice of paradise and the perfect location for a modern, luxurious treehouse.

Nelson Creek is an inland West Coast haven, roughly a 30-minute drive from Greymouth and is rich in gold mining history with pick axe tunnels and mine shafts from the 1800s – 1900s. The Te Aka Treehouse sits on 23 hectares of dense native forest. Expect to see native birdlife rustling in the trees and, if you chose to venture further than the treehouse, Golden Gully with a creek to try your hand at gold panning in. Tour the property with your hosts, check out the impressive caves and take a rejuvenating dip in the creek! Nelson Creek is a great place to rest and reconnect.

Te Aka Treehouse is the hosts Lisa and Dave’s way of sharing this slice of West Coast paradise that they both call home. With a passion for conserving the area, care and consideration have been given to every little aspect of this retreat. Two treehouses are suspended in the treetops among the podocarp forest, both completely private and both available to guests who have booked a stay. The main treehouse boasts a food-lovers kitchen with a gas oven and cooktop, beautiful wooden floors and fixtures, and skylights above the bed to bring the outside in. This treehouse also houses bathroom facilities which ooze luxury and comfort. The second treehouse provides more bedding and another place to rest, relax and soak in your surroundings.

The retreat is a well-curated combination of modern touches and homely comforts. Though Te Aka Treehouse has all the luxuries of a modern New Zealand retreat, it fits seamlessly into its surroundings without taking away from the undisturbed forest. Hoisted high in the air, the treehouse has large glass windows and doors, opening up to the nature outside and offering views of the spanning beech forest and glimpses of the Paparoa Range. Native matai, miro and rimu grow on the land, and you’ll see and hear plenty of birdlife. Enjoy the secluded setting fit for a special getaway.

Self-build projects don’t come more impressive than this. The hosts of Te Aka Treehouse Native Forest Retreat Lisa and Dave purchased the property in 2019, and have since selected a six hectre spot to perch their family home on, as well as the treehouse retreat. The integrity of the natural surroundings hasn’t been disturbed while creating this unique Greymouth accommodation. It is one with the bright green forest trees.

Stay warm and add to the ambience with the wood-burner fireplace, and regulate the temperature with the panel heaters and ceiling fan. Continuing with the theme of pure comfort, a large, deep bathtub in the bathroom overlooks the lush green forest, making for a relaxing, tranquil setting. Glass doors open to a large outdoor deck; the ultimate vantage point from the treehouse. Pour a glass of wine, read a book or simply scan the scenery through binoculars. As the day turns to night, turn on the outdoor lights to illuminate the nearby trees.

Read more about Te Aka Treehouse and the journey from the very beginning here.

In the spirit of ‘doing things the right way’ Te Aka Treehouse is set up for off-grid living. Te Aka is run on solar power and rainwater, and these eco-stay systems are mirrored in the hosts family home on the other side of the property. Fresh eggs from their chickens and beautiful fruit and vegetables from their garden are a warm and welcoming touch in the treehouse on arrival. Depending on the season, your hosts Lisa and Dave will prepare a selection of goodies for your stay varying from pesto and preserves to fresh bagels and baking. Everything you need for a wholesome breakfast is ready for you on-site. 

Explore a historic gold mining area with open trenches, old mining equipment and a labyrinth of hand-carved tunnels. This incredible forest retreat sits on a historic gold mining site. Now private land, Lisa and Dave may be able to take you on a tour of the property to discover everything from sunny creek spots to jaw-dropping tunnel networks.

Invasive wasps were once a massive pest on this unique property, with wasps attacking other insects and feeding on the native birdlife food source, honeydew. A wasp control programme was introduced by the owners back in 2019, and the safe system has drastically improved the health of the forest. Pest control on the ground is important too, with humane trapping targeting the population of rats, weasels and stoats.

For those looking to explore more near this spectacular West Coast accommodation, check out some great short walks. You won’t have to venture far to get to the start of many of these tracks. Cross the Nelson Creek suspension bridge in the Nelson Creek Recreation Reserve and enjoy the Callaghans Track, the Trailrace Walk and the Colls Dam Walk.

For a bigger day out, explore the nearby town of Reefton or drive to Greymouth and check out the arts and cultural centre, Pounamu Pathways Māwhera Pa, a must-visit in the area. A five-minute drive (or 25-minute walk) to the Nelson Creek Pub for dinner is the ideal way to get a dose of the local community vibe, and some classic pub-style fare. Rest and relax or explore and discover, or perhaps find a sweet spot somewhere in the middle, to make the most of your time in this spectacular place.

New Zealand Guide were hosted by Te Aka Treehouse Native Forest Retreat.

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