New Zealand’s Best Destination
The South Island is the second largest of New Zealand’s six main islands and home to some of the country’s most beautiful scenery.
This is a perfect destination for anyone looking for a break from the city. New Zealand’s South Island is a melting pot of culture and natural wonders, and the list of things to do in the South Island is endless. Consider the South Island your gateway to New Zealand and its magnificence.
If you’re planning an adventure in the South Island, Queenstown is an excellent starting point. This charming town has numerous activities for all ages and interests.
With a variety of outdoor activities from hiking to bungee jumping, there’s something for every traveler. The surrounding area also offers a wealth of history and culture. For those who would rather stay indoors, the majestic lake offers plenty of opportunities for relaxation and reflection. There are also unique dining spots that offer a glimpse into New Zealand’s heritage along with delicious local produce and fresh seafood dishes.
If you’re planning an adventure in the South Island, Queenstown is an excellent starting point. This charming town has numerous activities for all ages and interests. With a variety of outdoor activities from hiking to bungee jumping, there’s something for every traveler. The surrounding area also offers a wealth of history and culture. For those who would rather stay indoors, the majestic lake offers plenty of opportunities for relaxation and reflection. There are also unique dining spots that offer a glimpse into New Zealand’s heritage along with delicious local produce and fresh seafood dishes.
The Capital City
The capital of New Zealand and the most populous city, Wellington is an exciting destination for all. The nation’s museum quarter is one of the most popular parts of town, which includes a range of museums such as the National Archives and Museum, Wellington Museum, and Te Papa to name just a few.
Alternatively, you can get out and about in the capital city by visiting its UNESCO-listed Te Papa Tongarewa museum. The history on display will tell your own story as well as the stories of New Zealand. You might also want to visit Parliament or wander through some of the many galleries around town.
There are so many things to do in the South Island that you’ll need more than one visit.
Nelson and Abel Tasman Region
Nelson and Abel Tasman is one of the best places to visit in New Zealand. It is the most populated region with a population of about 100,000. The region boasts a lot of hiking, canoeing and kayaking opportunities around Abel Tasman National Park. One of the top attractions for visitors is the Cathedral Cove, which has been called “one of New Zealand’s finest coastal views.”
If you’re traveling to Nelson with kids or friends, don’t miss out on checking out the Skyline Gondola in Nelson Lakes National Park. The gondola ride will take you up 1,000 meters and offer amazing views of Mt. Nugget and the surrounding country side.
Another popular activity in Nelson Lakes National Park is going on a guided tour so that you can see what life was like for Maori people living in this area before Europeans arrived in New Zealand.
Christchurch is the largest city in New Zealand. It’s a great place to visit as it has many different activities and places of interest. The city is also known for its history, such as being the site of the country’s first Parliament in 1851.
Kiwi bird sanctuary
Unlike other New Zealand cities, Christchurch has an abundance of wildlife and bird life. You may want to visit one of the best-known Kiwi Bird Sanctuaries where you can spot some rare birds including the kiwi bird, weka, and takahe.
The South Island offers plenty of opportunities for adventure tours that will take you on scenic drives, hiking trips through ancient forests, or even white water rafting down rapids.
Southland and Stewart Island
The South Island is home to two of New Zealand’s most iconic islands: Stewart Island and Southland.
Stewart Island, located off the coast of the South Island, boasts scenic beaches and clear waters. And it isn’t just great for relaxing – there are lots of things to do on the island too. Take a walk along its beautiful coastline, go kayaking or snorkelling in the water around its perimeter, or enjoy a picnic in one of the many secluded bays.
Southland is home to some of New Zealand’s most beautiful nature reserves like Milford Sound and Abel Tasman National Park. If you’re looking for a more adventurous day trip, take a boat tour of Milford Sound (one of the world’s best natural wonders) to see its famous fjords and glacial lakes. There are plenty more things to do in this area too – explore Moeraki Boulders, hike through Abel Tasman National Park, or walk over Arthur’s Pass.
If you can’t decide what to do in New Zealand’s South Island or which island is better for your needs, visit both! You’ll find so much beauty with either destination that it doesn’t matter where you choose to stay – you’ll be able to appreciate them all equally.
Auckland and Waikato
Auckland is home to some of New Zealand’s most iconic sights, while the Waikato region is a natural wonderland.
Auckland is a modern city that brims with culture and history, boasting over 500 restaurants and cafes. You can also enjoy concerts at the Auckland International Concert Hall or visit the waterfront of Sydney Harbour in Australia.
The South Island’s capital, Christchurch, is located in the center of the island near its west coast. With a population of approximately 400,000 people, Christchurch offers a unique blend of European and New Zealand architecture. The city was devastated by an earthquake in 2011 that killed 185 people but has since been rebuilt and provides visitors with plenty of attractions like the Christchurch Art Gallery or the Cathedral Basilica.
Waikato is one of New Zealand’s most popular regions for outdoor activities such as fishing, horseback riding, hiking and kayaking. At its heart you’ll find Rotorua where geothermal activity makes it one of New Zealand’s hottest tourist destinations. Additional attractions include Hobbiton Movie Set Tours & The Redwoods Treehouse.
The South Island of New Zealand is a diverse and beautiful region with a wide range of experiences to offer. If you’re thinking about visiting New Zealand and want to experience the best this island has to offer, there are a few things you should do before you go.
5. Southland and Stewart Island
6. Auckland and Waikato