If you’re seeking the ultimate getaway destination, one where you can immerse yourself in the finest nature has to bestow, then look no further than New Zealand’s South Island. Visit windswept remote regions, encounter indigenous wild-life in their undisturbed, natural habitats, or sail upon turquoise waters; quite simply everything you need for the perfect retreat.
Abel Tasman National Park
In contrast to the chilly Alps, the Abel Tasman National Park basks in sunshine all year round. The park features clear cerulean-blue waters, fringed by lustrously golden beaches that are peppered with intriguing rock formations. Reaching inland, the terrain becomes rugged with dense native forests presenting every hue of green imaginable. The wondrous wild-life is all-encompassing: listen for the haunting song of the Bellbird, watch energetic penguins diving for their supper, or spy on sedentary seals lounging on rocks.
Deeply nestled within the bosom of The Southern Alps are hundreds of huge glaciers, all of which exude an ethereal beauty that is virtually indescribable. Franz Josef is resoundingly considered the gem of the West Coast glaciers, offering the kind of accessibility to the general public that rarely occurs anywhere else. Whatever your fitness level, you can still appreciate the glacier’s magnificence by walking alongside, hiking up, or having a birds-eye aerial view of it.
The Catlins is one of New Zealand’s remotest regions, boasting surroundings that are as diverse as they are awe-inspiring. Situated on the East Coast, the Catlins boasts vast, sweeping beaches and rugged coastlines, extensive temperate rainforests with a multitude of native trees and wild-life, and rolling green landscapes patch-worked with lush farmland. One unmissable stop on your itinerary is Nugget Point, made up of wave-eroded rocks, and the hang-out for a congregation of rare animals and birds.
Fiordland National Park
Without question, Fiordland National Park is one of the most captivating corners of the globe. Engulfed by imposing, ancient forests, the World Heritage site is made up of fourteen deep fiords that cluster around the South Island’s south-west corner. Each fiord is flanked by tumultuous waterfalls, fuelled by the region’s almost perpetual rain. Man a kayak, or charter a cruise, and explore the remote wilderness of Doubtful Sound, the second largest of the fiords, and a haven for dolphins, seals and penguins.
There’s something magical about Stewart Island; its tranquillity and hurried pace make it a Mecca for those seeking relaxation, unspoilt views and exotic wild-life. The island is a veritable haven for birds, with the immense diversity luring visitors from all over the world; in particular, the Brown Kiwi, which is an indigenous species. Paths and walkways criss-cross the island, leading you to breath-taking lookouts, such as Paterson Inlet and Observation Point.
Whatever brings you to New Zealand, make sure you take advantage of the luxury accommodation in South Island that are on offer, and check out our amazing holiday properties.