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South Island New Zealand Road Trip

A drive on the South Island—with its Lord of the Rings landscapes and superb local wines—is a journey to another world.
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Rating: 5 out of 5 by EveryTrail members
Difficulty: Easy
Duration: Multiple days
Family Friendly

Overview :  November is the ideal time for a springtime tour of the South Island’s secluded fjords, wild seascapes, and remote luxury lodges.... more »

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Points of Interest

One of Queenstown’s hottest tables, is an easy walk for dinner. Dishes include a range of superior steaks, venison, and lamb, as well as seafood dishes—such as Antarctic sea bass with bouillabaisse sauce.

Address:
17 Marine Parade
Queenstown
New Zealand

Phone:
64-3-442-6994

An unpretentious boutique property("dairy" is Kiwi for "convenience store," by the way).

Address:
10 Isle Street
Queenstown
New Zealand

Phone:
64-3-442-5164

The rustic-modern hotel is owned by a veteran park ranger and designed to take advantage of the views. A three-course dinner is included in the rate.

Address:
472 Te Anau-Milford Hwy.
Te Anau
New Zealand

Phone:
64-3-249-7832

A remote, timber-clad lodge, via a series of gravel roads. Toast the long drive with a bottle of outstanding Central Otago Pinot Noir and chill out on the deck overlooking the inlet and the sheep ranch that clings to the precipitous, pea-green hillside across the way.

Address:
297 Cape Saunders Rd.
Portobello, Portobello
New Zealand

Phone:
64-3-... More

5. Matakauri Lodge

Queenstown runs on adrenaline: the birthplace of bungee jumping also offers skydiving, jet boating, and killer downhill slopes. Matakauri Lodge & Spa is just an eight-minute drive from the action, but feels a world away, set among cabbage trees and Douglas firs. All of the 11 suites have simple, stylish schist-and-wood interiors and views of... More

6. Real Journeys

Plan a lake cruise on the Earnslaw, a 98-year-old steamer, or a half day of white-water rafting on the Shotover River.

Address:
Queenstown
New Zealand

Phone:
64-3-249-7416

7. Westpac Royal Albatross Centre

The tip of the Otago Peninsula is home to the Westpac Royal Albatross Centre, the world’s only mainland breeding colony for the formidable birds, which can live longer than 60 years and have a wingspan of 10 feet or more.

Address:
Taiaroa Head, Otago Peninsula
New Zealand

Phone:
64-3-478-0499