Where to go in New Zealand's South Island
List of regions
Spectacular Queenstown bustles year-round with thrill-seekers looking for that ultimate adrenaline rush. Meanwhile, nearby Wanaka offers all the same beauty, but with more of a laid-back vibe.
Fiordland is one of New Zealand's most iconic wilderness regions. Immersing yourself in these magical surroundings – whether by foot on the celebrated Milford Track or on board an overnight or daytime cruise – is a defining Kiwi experience.
From petrified forests embedded in the rock of the Catlins Coast to the first-sized oysters of Bluff and the wildlife wonders of remote Steward Island, New Zealand's southernmost reaches have more than a few secrets to share with the inquisitive visitor.
Vast flooded valleys characterise the South Island’s northern tip – the imposing front to rolling vineyards, national-park beaches and historic towns. Expect adventure aplenty, coupled with amazing seafood and, in Marlborough, some of Australasia's finest wines.
Extreme climate and extreme geography are the hallmarks of the west coast of New Zealand, a narrow strip of land hemmed in by the Tasman Sea and the Southern Alps, the backbone of the South Island.