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Marlborough

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Marlborough is situated in the north of our South Island and receives each year high temperature and long sunny days due to the temperate climate and is home to the Marlborough Wine Regions, being among one of the top in New Zealand. 
 
Queen Charlotte Sound is a place of outstanding natural beauty and on route from Wellington to Picto there is no finer place to view this that aboard one of our scenic ferry journey's. Our preferred Ferry company is The Interislander that offer Premium Class which gives access to a private lounge where you can enjoy complimentary WiFi and a meal, all for a very little extra.
 
In the head of the Sound you will find Ship Cove, a please where you can visit and walk in the steps of Captain Cook. The Queen Charlotte Sound is also where you will find the Queen Charlotte Track, which takes you on a 71 Km's journey showcasing Native Bush and many Secluded Bays as well as Historic Sights.
 
The Town of Picto is a fun and vibrant port, being the may town for Ferries to our North Island, here there is also The Coastal Pacific Train that takes you on a journey down our scenic East Coast to Christchurch.
 
There are daily cruises from Queen Charlotte Sound, one is the mail boat that offers you the chance to see small remote communities that rely on this service for delivery of mail. You can enjoy a visit to the Motuara Bird Sanctuary as well as explore the town of Picto and its shops and galleries or sit down for lunch or dinner in one of the many local cafe's and restaurants where the true cuisine of Marlborough shines.
 
Blenheim is a City with smaller townsThe city of Blenheim, the town of Renwick & the Wairau Valley form the heart of Marlborough. Blenheim offers a selection of fine dining, trendy cafes and local pubs to suit every palate. Step back in time at Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre, the world’s largest collection of World War One aircraft.  The Wairau Valley stretches between Blenheim & Renwick, with rows & rows of vines laid out across the stony fertile soils. 
 
Havelock is best known as the Greenshell Mussel Capital of the world. These delicious shellfish are responsible for a thriving local aquaculture industry of the local Pelorus & Kenepuru Sounds. The area offers a number of scenic cruises & eco-tours. You are sure to spot the local wildlife; penguins, seals, shags & a variety of other seabirds. You may even spot some local wild dolphins & orca along the way.
 
Awatere & the Pacific Coast stretch south along the eastern Pacific Coast through Marlborough’s southernmost settlements: Seddo, Ward & Kekerengu. Heading south from Blenheim takes you through the expansive Awatere Valley where Marlborough’s winemaking traditions continue to spread across the landscape.
 
The Marlborough region is situated on the north-eastern corner of the South Island, due west of Wellington.
 
Marlborough is New Zealand’s largest grape growing and wine making region with 65 wineries, 290 grape growers and 4054 hectares in grape production. Nearly all of the wineries welcome visitors for tasting sessions and many have a cafe or restaurant on site. Sauvignon Blanc is the region’s specialty, but wines made with Chardonnay, Riesling, Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes are also highly acclaimed. 
 
Before the wine industry came along, Marlborough’s fame lay with its picturesque sounds - sunken valleys that are home to all kinds of wonderful bird and sea life, including terns, shags, blue penguins, dolphins and seals. Queen Charlotte, Kenepuru and Pelorus Sounds can be explored by boat - ferry, runabout, luxury charter launch or kayak.

Sub Regions

Havelock

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Located at the meeting point of the Pelorus and Kaiuma Rivers on the coast northwest of Blenheim, Havelock calls itself the "green-lipped mussel capital of the world". Once a gold mining settlement, the town has many quaint colonial buildings which today house boutique galleries and eating places (be sure to order the mussels). The Havelock Museum has interesting displays that explain the town's past. At Havelock's marina there are water taxis and charter boats ready to take you fishing or show you around Pelorus and Kenepuru Sounds.

Sea kayaks can also be hired here for guided or independent paddling tours. Local accommodation includes private holiday homes, a camping ground, lodges, B&Bs, homestays and motels. Consider these activities while in Havelock: Taste the local delicacy - green-lipped mussels. Visit the historic gold mining township of Canvastown, the scenic splendour of Pelorus Bridge Reserve and rural Rai Valley. Get on board a charter boat and go snapper fishing or learn the eco-history of the Pelorus and Kenepuru sounds. Follow the Nydia Track to Tennyson Inlet. The walk takes two days. Visit the tiny settlement of French Pass and offshore D'Urville Island. Do the Pelorus Bridge Walks - 18 kilometres west of Havelock. Functional facts: Approx. population 490, good range of shops and services.

Picton

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The town of Picton is located in the Marlborough region of New Zealand. It is close to the head of Queen Charlotte Sound near the north-east corner of the South Island. The town is named after Sir Thomas Picton, the Welsh military associate of the Duke of Wellington, who was killed at the Battle of Waterloo. The Inter-island ferries cruise to and from Wellington arrive and depart here by way of the Marlborough Sounds. Most of the sheltered part of the route is through Tory Channel, south of Arapawa Island. The township of Waikawa is a couple of minutes’ drive from Picton, practically part of the same town. Waikawa boasts a marina, one of the largest in New Zealand. Combined with Waikawa’s population of 1158 people, Picton’s urban population is around 4000. - Read more on WIKI The Main North railway line and State Highway 1 link Picton southwards to Blenheim, Christchurch and beyond. While the scenic Queen Charlotte Drive (shorter in distance but usually slower than State Highway 1/State Highway 6 via Rapaura, near Blenheim) winds westward to Havelock.

Picton is the main link between the South and North Islands, with scheduled ferry service over Cook Strait. The two main shipping companies operating this route are the Interislander and Strait Shipping, with both offering Roll-on/roll-off capabilities for cars and trucks, and for the Interislander sometimes trains.The Coastal Pacific long-distance passenger/tourist train from Christchurch makes a daily return trip to Picton. Picton Airport at nearby Koromiko has regular services to Wellington and charter flights around the Marlborough sounds.Nearby settlements are at Anakiwa, Waikawa, and Ngakuta Bay.The Edwin Fox Maritime Centre features the Edwin Fox, the only surviving ship that transported convicts to Australia, which is undergoing preservation.

Blenheim

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The lovely, sunny town of Blenheim is in the Marlborough region, in the north-east of the South Island. It takes nearly four hours to drive the 309km between Blenheim and Christchurch – a beautiful drive through rolling hills of 'wine country'. The seaport of Picton is 28km away, the gateway to the Marlborough Sounds, Wellington and the North Island. Over the years, Blenheim offered a safe harbour to explorers such as Captain Cook and Dumont d'Urville.

Nowadays travelers from New Zealand and the rest of the world visit Blenheim to enjoy its wine industry, gourmet foods, Marlborough Sounds and activities such as golf, fishing, kayaking and water sports. less Blenheim, one of the sunniest towns in New Zealand, has an average of 2,500 sunshine hours every year. The hot, relatively dry summers and crisp winters are perfect for visitors as well as for growing the grapes destined for the internationally renowned Sauvignon Blanc. On the second Saturday in February each year, the annual Wine Marlborough festival showcases the region's wines and over 20 local Blenheim wineries open their cellar doors all year round. Taking a cycling tour around the wineries is popular and local parks and the Wither Hills offer attractive walks.