Experience the magic
Marlborough is many things to many people, and its sheer versatility is one aspect that makes it a popular destination.
Think fine wine, gourmet food, sparkling seas, convivial hosts, and an array of tempting tourism opportunities, and you’ll just scratch the surface of what’s on offer.
Having lived in Marlborough for 25 plus years, I’m a huge fan.
Let’s start with the amazing scenery. Driving from Christchurch to Marlborough is a scenic adventure all of its own, passing through the coastal gem that is Kaikoura, the sparkling pink salt ponds at Lake Grassmere, and into the heart of wine country. From Ward and Seddon onwards, from the Awatere Valley to Blenheim, Picton, Renwick, and the flatlands of the Wairau Plains, there are grapes as far as the eye can see, and a wide variety of different wineries at which to sample the resultant wares.
Many have dining options, others are small boutique tasting rooms, so take your pick.
Marlborough is not just about wine, however.
Peel back the layers and you’ll discover any number of activities, and exciting events throughout the year that make it worth a visit. Book festivals, art shows, its annual wine and food festival, an annual mussel festival, the Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre, and the iconic Garden Marlborough are all added attractions.
An extensive cycle trail winds through some of its most picturesque areas, and walking tracks vary from a stroll in the Wither Hills, to hiking the Queen Charlotte Track over several days. That brings us to the Marlborough Sounds, home to numerous upmarket lodges, family accommodations, and of course a multitude of water-based activities.
Boating, fishing, just cruising along and watching the wildlife all feature. From seals, to salmon farms, to shag colonies, the sparkling waters of Queen Charlotte, Pelorus, and Kenepuru Sounds are a tourism mecca, to be enjoyed by all ages.
By boat, plane or vehicle, the province’s diversity of landscapes, micro-areas, and opportunities are well worth exploring.
DID YOU KNOW?
The Marlborough Sounds are an extensive network of sea-drowned valleys at the northern end of the South Island of New Zealand. The Marlborough Sounds were created by a combination of land subsidence and rising sea levels. According to Māori mythology, the sounds are the prows of the many sunken waka of Aoraki.