Beyond the Queenstown Lakes Region there are plenty of South Island highlights close by. We’re picked out a few of those regions which are situated just a few hours drive away…
Covering the south-western tip of New Zealand, Southland is one of New Zealand's most sparsely-populated areas. There's nearly 3500km of rugged coastline in the region, which offers tranquillity and wildlife on an epic scale. The Catlins coast is a major draw, spanning 100km of coastline and popular for driving tours and campers.
The main town of Invercargill is 2 hours drive away and a good spot to try and see the aurora australis, or 'Southern Lights'. Head a few kilometres further south and catch a ferry from Bluff to Stewart Island to enjoy the walking trails and rich abundance of birdlife. Read More.
3.5 hours drive west is the Second largest city in the South Island. The beautiful architecture has made Dunedin one of the best preserved Victorian and Edwardian cities in the Southern Hemisphere. The gothic church spires, victorian styled mansions, vast native forests and charming sea views entice visitors to the city. Amazing wildlife is always close to hand with locals and tourists happy to marvel at rare penguins, playful sea lions and wondrous albatross colonies. Read More.
Driving 2.5 hours from Queenstown over the Crown Range, through Cardrona and past the resort town of Wanaka and Lake Hawea, leads to the wild and untamed beach of Haast. It’s also the beginning of the West Coast, a region that features the Pancake Rocks of Paparoa National Park, forest-clad coastlines, transparent rivers and lakes, and glaciers. Both Franz Josef and Fox Glaciers are only 30 minutes apart with glacier guided hikes a popular activity. Read More.
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