Experience dramatic landscapes and snow-capped mountains

In contrast to the more populous North Island, the South Island of New Zealand is less inhabited, untamed and wild: perfect for adventure seekers. From the lush nature of Abel Tasman National Park to the majestic mountain ranges of the Fiordland: this is nature at its most dramatic and awe-inspiring.

For those looking to experience New Zealand’s unique nature, there are iconic hiking trails to explore, turquoise lakes to kayak across and glacier-carved fiords to cruise down.

Adrenalin junkies are naturally drawn to the South Island too, especially Queenstown, for skydiving, white-water rafting and a chance to visit the birthplace of the modern bungee jump.

In the north east of the island, the Marlborough wine region produces two-thirds of the nation’s wine. The region’s distinctive sauvignon blanc, with its tropical, mineral finish, has helped put New Zealand’s award-winning wine on the map.

Marvel at star-filled skies in remote luxury lodges, embark on an adventure to the Southern Alps or just explore the boundless nature, alive with native birdsong. The South Island is a rugged wilderness just waiting to be explored, an experience certain to create unforgettable memories.

The South Island provides such a stunning contrast of landscapes, unique wildlife and great food and wine. Swim with dolphins in Marlborough Sounds or watch yellow penguins arrive on the beaches around Dunedin. Drink Sauvignon Blanc in the north and Pinot Noir in the south, kayak the bays of Abel Tasman or soar above Milford Sound in a helicopter to land on a icy glacier. The South Island is made for those who want to be awed every moment of the day.

Ellie Khoury
Travel Designer

New Zealand South Island example trips

Browse the example plans above and talk with our New Zealand experts to create your very own personal itinerary.

Our favourite places to stay in the South Island