South Island

Mr. Harper's Travel Guide

Our suggested tour of New Zealand continues from the North Island to the South Island, reached from Wellington by car ferry (three long hours). A better option is to take one of the daily scheduled commercial flights from Wellington to Blenheim (25 minutes), Nelson (35 ...

Our suggested tour of New Zealand continues from the North Island to the South Island, reached from Wellington by car ferry (three long hours). A better option is to take one of the daily scheduled commercial flights from Wellington to Blenheim (25 minutes), Nelson (35 minutes) or Christchurch (45 minutes). 

Timara Lodge outside Blenheim makes for an idyllic Old World stopover. Sequestered in the celebrated Marlborough wine district, this hospitable manor was built in 1923 as a private estate and sits amid parklike grounds punctuated by lovely English gardens, stately trees and a swan-graced millpond. 

Farther south, crisscrossed by the sleepy, willow-fringed Avon River, the historic and genteel metropolis of Christchurch has aptly been called the “Garden City of New Zealand,” its urban landscape ribboned with blissful parklands, leafy squares and residential yards bursting with all manner of colorful flowers. Be sure to visit alluring Mona Vale and the Botanic Gardens, as well as The Arts Centre ensconced amid the former Canterbury University’s medieval-style quadrangles. 

From Christchurch, it’s a sensible one-hour flight to Queenstown, though more adventurous souls may want to consider the dramatic Highway 6, which runs along the western coast from Arthur’s Pass. The 10-hour drive down to Queenstown can be broken up with a stop at Franz Josef village, where you’ll be able to admire the magnificent glacier. Guided ice walks can be arranged, as well as heli-hikes and scenic flyovers.

bird icon Hotels & Restaurants in South Island

SIMILAR REGIONS TO Worldwide //  Australia/New Zealand/South Pacific //  New Zealand //  South Island

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