South Island travel | New Zealand, Australia & Pacific

From turquoise lakes and luxurious peninsulas to snowcapped mountains and glowing glaciers, the South Island’s majestic landscapes supply awe and journey in equal measure.

Wandering Wild

With simply over 1,000,000 folks scattered throughout 151,215 sq km, you may don’t have any bother discovering your personal slice of wilderness on New Zealand’s ‘mainland’. The solely drawback might be selecting between the chic forests, mountains, lakes, seashores and fiords that make this island among the finest out of doors locations on the planet. Lace up your boots and sort out one of many South Island’s six Great Walks, or select from numerous different choices starting from quick nature strolls to multiday, backcountry epics. The Department of Conservation’s monitor and hut community makes it straightforward to discover a means in.

Adventure Ahoy

Hiking (often called ‘tramping’ right here) could be the South Island’s quintessential exercise, however there are racier methods to immerse your self in its landscapes. Tumble down the Buller or Rangitata Rivers in a raft, or paddle the glassy coves of the Marlborough Sounds, Abel Tasman National Park or Fiordland. In winter, slice up the slopes round Wanaka, Queenstown or Mt Hutt, whereas in hotter climate the Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail and Central Otago Rail Trail beckon to these on two wheels. For the hardcore thrill-seekers, Queenstown’s gravity-defying menu of bungy, paragliding or skydiving is bound to get your adrenalin pumping.

Tantalise Your Tastebuds

Epicurious travellers will delight within the South Island’s smorgasbord of seasonal produce, from luscious berries, stone fruit, asparagus and root greens, to native seafood, lamb, beef and a plethora of artisanal dairy delights. Roadside kiosks promote all the pieces from farm eggs to grandma’s tomato relish, whereas world-class regional eating places skim the cream of native crops for revolutionary tasting menus. Add a number of the world’s finest cool-climate wines, from Central Otago’s very good pinot noir to Marlborough’s famend sauvignon blanc, in addition to a number of the most fun craft breweries within the nation, and you’ve got a recipe for a foodies’ paradise.

Meet the Locals

Prepare to satisfy the South Island’s idiosyncratic wildlife. Whales, fur seals, dolphins and penguins all frequent the coastal waters round Kaikoura; endangered Hector’s dolphins cavort alongside penguins in Akaroa Harbour and the Catlins; and the Otago Peninsula shelters penguins, sea lions and even a colony of royal albatrosses. Further south, distant Stewart Island is the right place to identify the long-lasting however shy kiwi, alongside a profusion of different feathered pals. The South Island can be dwelling to 2 particular parrots, the kaka and the kea – the latter is especially keen on automotive aerials and unattended tramping boots.

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