The Marlborough Sounds on the South Island of New Zealand are a boaters and nature lovers paradise. With over 4,000 km² of islands, sounds and peninsulas, it’s coastline is so jagged that it actually contains 1/5 of New Zealand’s total coastline. The areas rugged beauty and natural wonder attract tourists all year long. From the large ferry terminal in Picton to the smaller leisure craft marina and town of Waikawa the area is teeming with boating and hiking possibilities.
Some of New Zealand’s most famous and picturesque hikes like the Queen Charlotte Track can be found in this region. The Queen Charlotte Track is considered to be one of the best hiking tracks in the world and is definitely the most accessible with a variety of accommodations along the way. There’s even a water transport service that will ferry your luggage (or yourself if you’re too tired) to your next destination each night if you don’t feel like carrying a backpack. Most people can walk the 71km track in 3 or 4 days, however with a little planning you can start or stop anywhere you feel like.
As well as the ferry terminal to Wellington, Picton is the start of both the Main North Line Railway and the State Highway. From Picton you can jump on a ferry to the North Island, hop aboard a train south to Christchurch or start your South Island tour in the vehicle of your choice. It doesn’t get much greener or wilder…
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