New Zealand Fishing TravelNew Zealand Fly Fishing LodgesSouth Island Lodges

A Laid-Back Stay at River Haven Lodge


River Haven Lodge sits near the confluence of the Mangles and Buller Rivers near the small town of Murchison at the top end of the South Island. Just a 90 minute drive from Nelson airport, it is one of several lodges offering stay and fish packages in the heart of New Zealand’s wild brown trout country. Pricing is in the mid-range and the fishing is superb.

The Lodge

Owned and run by well-known guide Scott Murray and his wife Leya, River Haven Lodge offers an excellent option if you enjoy a more casual stay with your world-class fishing. And like all good fishing lodges there is plenty of gear and tackle available on site and a heli-pad on the lawn. There’s also a very pleasing number of excellent fishing rivers and streams within a 90 minute drive or a highly scenic heli flight.

With a 70% return guest rate there is obviously plenty to enjoy about a stay at River Haven. Accommodation is in four rustic log cabins in the garden, stretched along the riverside. There’s also a smaller lodge room in the main house. All meals are also taken in the main house, although the cabins do each have a small kitchen to rustle up a quick snack in. The rate includes accommodation, all meals and house wines and beers, pre-dinner drinks and canapes. And the fishing rate includes all your gear and tackle, a packed lunch, and 4WD transport to and from the river each day. Heli flights, as usual, are extra.

The Fishing

Scott is a well-known fishing guide who has been working the area for a long time. Many fishermen may remember him as a guide at Lake Rotoroa Lodge (when it was open). It’s his dream come true to now be running his own lodge not that far down-river from there.

And about the rivers – a very happy guest had this to say. “The waters, which range from small creeks to large, open rivers are nothing short of spectacular. Fishing these gin clear waters for challenging wild Browns that range from 3-10+ pounds is the ultimate trout fishing experience. I believe that Scott’s team of guides are second to none … And to top it off, Scotty and Leya’s hospitality makes you feel like you are visiting old friends as opposed to staying at a commercial lodge.”

And that really sums up the experience at River Haven Lodge. It is very much a home-style fishing stay rather than a ‘lodge’. If that is your preferred style of hospitality, then you’ll feel right at home there. And you won’t be disappointed with the fishing either.

Email us to find out more about a stay at River Haven Lodge