Blenheim to Invercargill – 1021 km
Blenheim – Nelson, Nelson – West Coast, West Coast – Central Otago, Central Otago – Southland
Break time in the Marlborough Sounds
This is a long scenic drive that could be squeezed into two days, but as a holiday it can take a week or more. Typically anyone travelling this entire route will commence the journey at Picton after having crossed the Cook Strait on one of the ferries, or driven north from Christchurch to Blenheim on highway one.
If commencing this route from Picton, the more popular and very scenic route is Queen Charlotte Drive, It’s a shortcut across to Havelock. This road is very winding in places, but there
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Soul Time in Southland
Southland is as it’s name implies the southern most region of New Zealand and is the place to visit if you’d like to get away from it all.
Bounded by Otago to the north, and comprising of the Catlins Forest park in the east. The towns of Balclutha, Clinton, Gore and Mataura. Invercargill is Southland’s capital with a wide range of facilities and activities and it’s situated near the central southern coast.
Further west encounter Winton, Riverton Tuatapere, Mossburn, Manapuri and Te Anau, a base for exploring the spectacular Fiordland National Park or driving up to Milford Sound.
Southland’s key attractions include Stewart Island, the Catlins and the Southern
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Home to some great walks
Mt Aspiring National Park borders Fiordland National Park in the Southwest New Zealand to comprise the World Heritage Area known as Te Wahipounamu. The Park covers 355,531 ha and was established 1964. Mt Aspiring (the mountain) is a complex of impressively glaciated mountain scenery centred on Mount Aspiring (3,036 m), which is New Zealand’s next highest peak to Mount Cook.
The park spans a large area, from the Haast River in the north to the Humbolt Mountains in the south. Large valleys, carved out by ancient glaciers, dissect the high mountain ranges and Mt Aspiring itself is viewable from near Wanaka and Haast.
Mt Aspiring is known by Maori as ‘Tititea’
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A home in paradise
Looking over Te Anau Township
Located south of Queenstown and situated on the eastern shore of Lake Te Anau, (New Zealand’s second largest lake) you’ll find the town of Te Anau. The town it’self is small with a base population of about 2000 that can expand to over 6000 in peak season.
Te Anau has a good range of accommodation and restaurants as well as supermarkets and other services.
Southern adventure destination
Te Anau is the gateway to Milford and Doubtful Sounds, and the many famous walking tracks including the Kepler, Routeburn, Hollyford and the world famous Milford Track.
Te Anau makes an ideal base from which explore Te Anau
Within Fiordland National Park, Milford Sound is a fiord sculpted may thousands of years ago by glacial ice; the mountains rise almost vertically for a mile or more from the ocean and as remote as it is, Milford Sound is one of the worlds rare scenic jewels that must be seen to be appreciated.
There is limited food, petrol and accommodation in Milford. In winter, access is not totally guaranteed, as the road can be closed briefly by slips or avalanche and the small airport can be closed by fogs or high winds. Rain forests cling to the steep mountainsides and the area typically gets 5 – 9 metres of rain per year. So
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Filled with scenic wonders
The southwest of New Zealand’s South Island is dominated by Fiordland National Park. A region largely uninhabited by people which allows plants and wildlife to grow freely and naturally making it one of the world’s great wilderness areas.
Snow-covered mountains, dense forest, glaciers and tussock-covered alpine regions all feature in Fiordland National Park. Flora and fauna is densely packed into the landscape, with some 700 plant species which are not found anywhere else on the planet. It is a haven for all keen explorers, trampers and mountaineers.
Much of the Park is inaccessible by road, but from Te Anau, a small town considered to be the gateway to Fiordland National Park, transport services are available to
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The Friendly City
Invercargill is New Zealand’s southernmost city and the commercial heart of Southland. It is Southland’s major service centre and transport hub – the airport links travellers with other main centers within hours and trains and buses depart nationwide daily.
Invercargill is Southland’s only city. From here, you can take the short journey across Foveaux Straight to Stewart Island. The city of Invercargill offers a display of fine Victorian architecture and has all the amenities and services that any traveller may require. The wonderful Southland Museum and Art Gallery has a live Tuatara display. A stay in Invercargill enables you to meet the local residents and discover the warmth of ‘southern hospitality’.
The city offers an excellent
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The most southern isle
Stewart Island bay by Here be kiwis
Whether you are a New Zealander or from another country, you will enjoy the magical atmosphere of Stewart Island. The people who live there do so because they value the special qualities of the island; clear clean waters, lush rain forest, the at times ‘bracing climate’ and a very relaxed lifestyle.
You may come to enjoy the land and seascapes, see the rare indigenous kiwi (a nocturnal flightless bird about the size of a chicken and a very long bill), fish, dive or just relax, A Stewart Island holiday will provide experiences to keep you coming back for more.
The Islanders are intrepid Southerners, quick
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