Aotearoa Calling

Aotearoa Calling is a leadership programme designed for secondary students to deepen their connection to Aotearoa while on a cultural & adventurous journey across Te Tau Ihu, the Top of the South. Along the way you will hear the stories of this land and gain a deeper appreciation for its rich culture & biodiversity, learning to understand your potential as future leaders and kaitiaki of this land.

Across this 10-day programme you will journey into the heart of our wilderness, and the hearts of our people. This programme will include a stay at the marae where you will be welcomed as manuhiri (guests) to share in the stories of this rohe (region). With an open mind you will paddle by waka into the Abel Tasman, then adventure into the wilderness of a local national part. Be restored by nature and undergo a digital detox as you venture into remote wilderness areas, walk golden beaches, encounter wildlife and connect to the epic beauty and stories of Aotearoa. Gain leadership skills as you open your eyes to new perspectives of te taiao (the environment), to new friendships, and to new possibilities as you explore these diverse landscapes.

Get ready for your future!

Aotearoa Calling starts and finishes in Nelson. You can check out our latest adventures on Facebook and Instagram.

Get in touch with our team to find out more: [email protected]

Safety First

Safety is paramount at Whenua Iti Outdoors. We are a registered provider of Adventure Activities with Worksafe NZ, and are Safety audit certified with OutdoorsMark. WIO is an educational, not for profit charitable trust, we have been operating for 35 years and we love working with young people! Learn more about our safety systems

Environmentally Responsible

Our programme aims to tread lightly, following ‘Leave No Trace’ principles in the outdoors, and the carbon footprint of travel within the programme will be offset by an afternoon of contributing to a local conservation project. We encourage those who travel to Nelson to consider how they can offset the impact of their travel on the environment.

100% of profit used for ‘good’

In keeping with the not-for-profit, charitable mandate of Whenua Iti Outdoors, 100% of any associated profit generated through this programme is directed straight into the Whenua Iti Foundation that provides experiential learning programmes to support the wellbeing & development of local youth.

Duke of Edinburgh

You might like to consider counting this course towards the Duke of Edinburgh’s Hillary Award! This international award is considered the leading youth achievement award – we can help you plan your award training & assessment. Find out more….

There is an additional cost of $50 to cover Award administration and you must be enrolled in The Duke of Edinburgh’s Hillary Award before you go on a programme – we can help get you started with this, please contact us.

Related Programmes

Adventure Skills Development | 16-18 Year old’s

‘Everything was fun and challenging. I loved the whole trip.’  – Student

‘The challenge and experience is invaluable
for the students and their future.’ – Teacher

Further resources

| Safety First | Find out more about our safety policies

| FAQs | Find answers to most commonly asked questions

| Gear Lists | Go to our Downloads page to find a generic gear list

| Experiential Learning | Find out more about the philosophy that underpins our programmes

Key Components:

  • Adventure
  • Tourism
  • Environment

Open to:

15 - 18 year old's


9 nights / 10 days


Multi-day programme including overnights


Based out of Nelson & surrounding National Parks


$2000 pp

Additional Costs If Required:
$50 pp – for Duke of Edinburgh’s Award admin fee
$50 pp – Airport transfer fee


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Airport pick-up / drop-off will be coordinated for those from out of region.
Cost includes: Food, equipment, tuition, adventures and fun!
Payment plans are available, please ask.


Qualified Instructors

You're in safe hands. Our friendly & highly professional instructors are all industry qualified for a wide range of activities.


NZQA Qualified and NCEA Aligned

We are NZQA accredited, can offer NCEA Level 1-3 assessments and all programmes align with the NZ Curriculum key competencies.


Safety Accredited

We put safety first. We are a registered provider of Adventure Activities with Worksafe NZ, and are Safety audit certified with OutdoorsMark.

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