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“Most Rewarding and Unforgettable Experience”

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Mount Tutu Eco-Sanctuary
Reviewed 1 October 2013

This was undoubtedly the best accommodation we stayed in during our trip of NZ's north island.

The rooms are called Whares that are like mini cabins with en suite bathrooms and little terraces with a table and chairs to enjoy the sunshine during the summer.

It costs $120 + GST (15%). For the price you get breakfast which consists of a full fried breakfast as well as cereal, toast, tea, coffee and fruit. You can choose what time you have your breakfast, the owners are very accommodating. It also includes a glow worm tour after dark. We were able to choose the time we took the tour but maybe that was just because it was off-season. They also take you on a tour of their property which is huge with a lot of bush area and a sheep paddock where you can feed the sheep. Wifi is also free but it's extremely slow and frustrating to use.

The couple who own the place are eco warriors and seem really passionate about trying to be self-sufficient out on their land on the hillside. Their land is quite big with a lot of bush land and a mini forest which the owner will take you around.

It is such an interesting place. The glow worm tour was so unique. We thoroughly enjoyed our time there and would recommend it to anyone.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank christl3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MountTutuEcoTauranga, Owner at Mount Tutu Eco-Sanctuary, responded to this reviewResponded 2 October 2013

Thank you so much for your kind words. We apologise for the slow Wi-fi, at the time of your stay, which wasn't usual. This was close to the end of the month and our data limit had been exceeded, which was the cause of the slow internet. WE HAVE NOW HAD THE ALLOWABLE LIMIT DOUBLED :)
We enjoyed meeting you and having you stay. We get so much pleasure in sharing our paradise with others.
Safe travels, Tim and Debbie

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Reviews (38)
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19 - 25 of 38 reviews

Reviewed 16 January 2013

Tuaranga and the Bay of Plenty have much to offer. An easy drive from Hobbiton or Rotorua, the highlight of our adventure was staying at the Mount Tutu Eco-Sanctuary. Tim and Debbie have carefully stewarded this reserve. What the accommodations lack in modern design is more than made up for in fabulous hospitality. The hike around the property in the morning was only outdone by the night hike to see the glow worms!

Room Tip: It is an easy drive from Tauranga, but I suggest going during daylight the first time.
  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled with friends
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Thank Julie S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 November 2012

We almost had to cancel the last minute and thank god that we did not. It would be regretful if not be. We could not imagine ourselves in this part of the world where you are so close to the nature with the comfort of a home. Tim & Debbie offered us tea and biscuits upon arrival and it was so yummy that I had wanted to buy some back but unfortunately they did not have extras. We began our exploration of their beautiful area and took some awesome pictures. I will try to upload some ASAP. We also came up close personal with the Tutu sheeps. Their ducks and chickens were like guest relations officers to us, kept following us, very very cute. They also have cage birds and we could also see other birds flying around. We felt that children will enjoy this very much. The next highlight was the glow worm tour where Tim & Debbie, very proud and enthusiastic of their magical land shown us the way to where the glow worms are. We were in awe and was truly an eye opener for city dwellers where we would never ever experience such amazing and magical creatures. We could also see them up close and personal. Unfortunately our cameras were not for night photos. It could only be etched in our minds forever.

The drive up from Tauranga is about 10+km and we also managed to go to the beach easily and drove up again. The room is very comfortable for us and we borrowed some reading materials of New Zealand which was a very good read and knowledge. I also got to know a little more of Debbie whom got the great love & support of Tim and their girls fought breast cancer. And because of where they are, the environment also healed Debbie.

We slept well through the night and awoke to the beautiful sounds of the birds. The air was so fresh. Next we proceed to have our breakfast in the hall where Tim & Debbie made for us, it was lovingly set up and the breakfast was simple and good.

We left with the feeling of having a slice of heaven, rejuvenated and very happy that we made the decision to stay with Tim & Debbie. When we are back the next time, we will definitely stay here again.

  • Stayed: November 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank DrChloe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 October 2012

We thoroughly enjoyed out stay with Tim and Debbie at Mount Tutu! We actually stayed here in June 2011, but we've been busy so didn't get around to writing reviews from our trip until now. Mount Tutu is only a 15-20 minute drive into town, but when you get back to your private cabin, it feels like you are a world away, with nature at every turn. Tim and Debbie took us on a fantastic night hike to see glowworms right in their backyard! How cool is that! The next day, they lead us through another part of their property, where we really got to enjoy some of the native flora that New Zealand has to offer. We even got to meet their awesome sheep. We stayed two nights, and wished it could have been longer. Can't wait to return!

  • Stayed: November 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank Mike L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 June 2012

This place is like a hidden treasure! You travel up into the clouds and just when you think you can't go any further, Mount Tutu appears hidden in the bush. Paradise is right! You travel back through a small tree lined road to your lil' cottage that awaits. Tim and Debbie met us at the door and the two of them couldn't have been sweeter. We sat down immediately to a cup of tea and lemon cake and Tim was anxious to show off his beautiful land. We met them when dark came upon the sky and we found ourselves slipping into Welly's and heading down into the creek. Little did we know, we'd be walking amongst the stars. Our own personal tour of the glowworms left us in awe. No picture can do this justice, but the memory will last a lifetime. The accommodation was fairly basic, but you don't come here for spa treatments and wifi compatibility. You come here for an experience you can't get anywhere else. The next morning we woke to a home cooked breaki and hike through the bush. We left wanting more, which is exactly what you want on a vacation from the norm. Thank you Tim and Debbie! - Brian and Lisa

Room Tip: Either plan a dinner with Tim and Debbie or bring your own. You are a good 20 minute drive to civili...
  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank BrianShoe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MountTutuEcoTauranga, Owner at Mount Tutu Eco-Sanctuary, responded to this reviewResponded 15 June 2012

Thank you for the lovely words. So enchanted to share a "Step in Time". We actually do have Wi-fi so have now put this on our website and have put up a sign. Thank you once again, Tim and Debbie

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Reviewed 17 April 2012

Staying at Mount Tutu Eco Sanctuary was a great experience. Tim and Debbie were excellent hosts Their knowledge of and enthusiasm for the environment was very compelling. They have restored their land beautifully to native bush and have painstakingly created pathways through their land to allow you to explore their rainforest. The highlight for us was the magical glow worm tour which takes place in the evening when you don wellington boots and miners lamps and follow Debbie and Tim through the forest down to the stream. The magic moment comes when having walked along the stream, the lamps are turned off and thousands of glow worms are twinkling all around you. A truly unforgettable experience and one I would recommend you to experience for yourselves. gail and varinder 2012

  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank gail c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 April 2012

The Mount Tutu Eco-Sanctuary will make you feel you are in the middle of a beautiful rainforest, but with all the comforts of a motel/B&B. The hosts are incredibly informative and friendly, the breakfast substantial and the area just breathtaking. We were really surprised and pleased that this lodge was only 20minutes from Tauranga, so there is no need to stay in the city when you have this hidden gem! Rooms are basic but have everything you need, it is so peaceful that you will no doubt have a fantastic sleep - we sure did! Great eco-credentials and the hosts are very involved in the local community which we thought was important.

  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank Ecokeenkiwi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MountTutuEcoTauranga, Owner at Mount Tutu Eco-Sanctuary, responded to this reviewResponded 20 April 2012

Thank you so much for your positive comments.
Our Whare (rooms) offer a simplistic cosy and comfortable, close to nature encounter, that provide the following:
Free Wi-fi internet for email
Ensuite
External Decks'
Heating
Electric Blankets
Carpeted floors
Tea and Coffee facilities with biscuits and chocolates
Full linen
Fresh flowers
Nearby to Lounge exclusive to Guests
Retro decor styling (see images on website)
Rainforest tranquility and sound of birdsong

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Additional Information about Mount Tutu Eco-Sanctuary

Address: 1190 Ohauiti Road | Rd 3, Tauranga 3173, New Zealand
Region: New Zealand > North Island > Bay of Plenty Region > Tauranga
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #16 of 47 Speciality Lodging in Tauranga
Price Range: £94 - £111 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Stay in an enchanting "Bush Whare" with en-suite at an Eco-Lodge and Nature Retreat. Guests receive hearty breakfasts, evening Glow-Worm tour, Rainforest tour (included in tariff), and feed Mount Tutu sheep. Enjoy woodland/water gardens, Rainforest Bird Sanctuary, and awaken to bird song. Protected (QEII National Trust) paradise, with trees over 500 years old. Free Wi-Fi for email in Guest Lounge and some rooms. MICROWAVE & FRIDGE in Guest Lounge close to rooms, BBQ available. SPECIAL NZ$69.00 DISCOUNT WHEN STAYING SECOND NIGHT, PLEASE ENQUIRE. NO PHOTOS HAVE BEEN PHOTO-SHOPPED AND ARE A TRUE REPRESENTATION. We offer a rustic and authentic experience with the charm and hospitality of yesteryear. Accommodation is built using recycled materials (1970's retro decor) providing cosy and comfortable Whare (cabins) with ensuite and Family Room with separate private bathroom. ... more   less 
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