New Zealand honeymoon on South Island
Great New Zealand honeymoon destinations are the Nelson - Abel Tasman region, Central Otago or the Catlins. These are all areas of exceptional beauty and all have their different attractions - kayaking and water-based activities, walking and beaches in the Abel Tasman. There are also beautiful cozy townships and history in Central Otago and wildlife and rugged coastlines around the Catlins.
On this New Zealand honeymoon page you will find:
• Top 6 things to do on the South Island New Zealand
• A 2 week romantic getaway or honeymoon itinerary
• Spa getaways and Wine tours for both NORTH and SOUTH Island
Romantic Getaway & New Zealand Honeymoon : Top 6 romantic things to do and see on South Island
Kaikoura - overlooks majestic mountains which are snow capped for many months of the year. Kaikoura offers ultimate marine adventure such as Whale watching, dolphin and seal swimming. It is one of the few places in the world where whales can be seen all year round and is situated in the middle between Christchurch and Picton on the East Coast.
Abel Tasman National Park - Golden sand beaches, kayaking, the Abel Tasman Coastal Track and Split Apple Rock, situated near Marahau. This romantic getaway has stunning landscapes and the highest sunshine hours in New Zealand. The area is surrounded by Native Bush and protected by rocky cliffs, limestone and marble. It’s also renowned for its wildlife including native birds, seals and dolphins.
The Banks Peninsula is just an hour from Christchurch, make sure you include it in your New Zealand holiday. Marvel at the wildlife - view or swim with dolphins, watch seals, penguins and sea birds and follow by romantic waterfront dining in the evening.
Romantic Places to stay:Matua Gardens Retreat, Akaroa Harbour, Banks Peninsula is completely private luxury accommodation available to only one couple or single at any time. It's a few bays before Akaroa on the road from Christchurch. The views are stunning and the food is divine. Romantic celebrations with spa treatments and gourmet dining are a speciality.
Golden Bay at the top of the South Island (west of Nelson) is one of the most beautiful places in the world. Stay at the Romantic Awaroa Lodge - you can only get there by boat or helicopter.
Lake Tekapo near Mount Cook is an amazing turquoise blue lake and a great spot to vist on a romantic getaway in New Zealand. The world famous Church of the Good Shepherd offers awe-inspiring views of Lake Tekapo and the Southern Alps through its altar window.
Invercargill - the southernmost city and one of the very few places to see a famous Tuatara. The tuatara is a very ancient and only survivor of a large group of reptiles that roamed the earth at the same time as dinosaurs. It hasn't changed its form much in over 225 million years. The relatives of tuatara died out about 60 million years ago which is why the tuatara is sometimes called a ‘living fossil’.
New Zealand honeymoon South Island - A 2 week honeymoon itinerary including romantic places to stay and dine.
• Start your New Zealand honeymoon at Christchurch: the largest city in the South Island, a very English city with the world's best collection of gothic revival architecture.
• Drive to Franz Josef (253 miles via Arthur's Pass) it takes 5 hours driving time on a normal day. Twisty and turny, you may encounter ice conditions through Arthurs Pass. From there continue on to Fox Glacier (30 minutes drive time).
Take a unique guided walk on your New Zealand honeymoon in the ice caves and pinnacles of Franz Josef Glacier in Westland National Park, see the extraordinary colors of the ice-flow up close, and panoramic views of a pristine alpine environment. The area surrounding the two glaciers is designated a World Heritage Site.
• Head towards Queenstown (via Haast and Wanaka) 178 mi – about 3 hours 31 mins to Wanaka.
Wanaka was Voted in the top 10 of the world's most romantic destinations by Time Life. This romantic tranquil town is located in a land of striking mountains, deep alpine lakes and air as clear as crystal. Perfect spot for a New Zealand honeymoon.
New Zealand honeymoon - Romantic Resorts: The Edgewater Resort is an accommodation option for a romantic retreat with breath taking views.
New Zealand honeymoon - Romantic Restaurants: Missy’s Kitchen Restaurant and Bar and for deliciously fresh seafood visit the Reef Seafood Restaurant and Bar.
• Arrowtown is only 34.5 mi – about 51 mins from Wanaka living historic gold mining town - a beautiful town, filled with rich heritage and is an excellent spot to visit or stay any time of the year.
• From there it is only 12.6 mi – about 22 mins to Queenstown, a tourist mecca surrounded by majestic mountains and nestled on the shores of crystal clear Lake Wakatipu, Queenstown is New Zealand’s premier four season lake and alpine resort.
• From Queenstown take a side 2 day trip to Te Anau (106 mi – about 2 hours 14 mins) and then continue to Milford Sound 72.6 mi – about 1 hour 25 mins.
Milford Sound - described as the Eighth Wonder of the World. This secluded region, with its sheer rock faces and waters teeming with penguins, seals and dolphins, is located within the Fiordland National Park, part of the larger Te Wahipounamu World Heritage site. Adventurous couples can attempt “the most beautiful walk in the world,” a three-and-a-half-day trek from Te Anu that every step of the way envelops you in the area’s natural grandeur. You can cruise the length aboard the Milford Mariner, with kayaking or a tender craft to explore the shoreline, three course buffet dinner and hearty breakfast.
• Return to Queenstown and head out (via Lindis Pass) towards Mt Cook.
• Make a stop at Twizel (about 163 mi – about 3 hours 17 mins from Queentown) - the alpine retreat of is close to five picturesque lakes, Its residential population is 1,000, but in summer the population more than triples.
New Zealand honeymoon - Romantic Places to stay:
In the Twizel area, Onuku Farm Hostel is equipped stargazers - little wooden hut with candles and a glass roof to watch the stars at night. They organize intimate (6 people max) Dolphin Swimming trips in the morning. Good for one night since its pretty basic but has a very romantic atmosphere.
Another romantic place to stay on your New Zealand honeymoon in Twizel are Omahau Downs. It's small (no crowds), cosy and very comfortable. The views and the outdoor bath make it very romantic and the breakfast is delicious.
• Continue (40.1 mi – about 50 mins) to Aoraki Mount Cook National Park which is dominated by the peaks of the dazzling Aoraki Mount Cook The alpine village of Mount Cook provides a host of accommodation and is a stepping stone to numerous activities from thrilling scenic flights to leisurely hikes and glacier boat tours. Hiking the Tasman, is a popular activity and a unique Mount Cook wedding location. Stay at the Hermitage at Mt Cook - they might do honeymoon packages for a night or two.
• From there it is about 206 mi – about 4 hours 36 mins back to Christchurch.
New Zealand honeymoon & Winery tours in on Both North and South Islands
New Zealand's climate is perfect for fine wine growing, wineries and vineyards. Sample internationally acclaimed wines such as Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Riesling. Enjoy a degustation meal with matching wines for a romantic dining experience. Vin Alto in Clevedon (Auckland), or Goldwater Estate on Waiheke offer wonderful degustation menus in a romantic destination.
Nelson is the geographic centre of the country and surrounded by three stunning national parks, vineyards and orchards.
Romantic Ideas and things to do on a New Zealand honeymoonat some of the 8 main New Zealand wine regions:
Auckland Wineries - hire a car on Waiheke Island in Auckland's Hauraki Gulf, and visit the many wonderful vineyards. Several have restaurants overlooking the vines, with expansive sea views.
Central Otago Wineries - try a mini bus day tour in Otago - you'll go to Gibbstown Valley where you will do wine tasting in a cave, and another based in an old historic church.
Hawkes Bay is also an excellent choice for romantic wine tours - with wineries in the hills and art deco architecture in Napier - try a bike ride tour around the vineyards.
Some wine areas, especially Marlborough and Martinborough, will have cottages in the area, where you can stay in cosy comfort, strolling to the vineyards for meals and wine tasting.
For a unique romantic experience on your New Zealand honeymoon retreat to an inn housed in a former convent. Old St. Mary's Convent sits on a 60-acre garden estate in the wine district of Marlborough on New Zealand's South Island. This unique lodging has just five accommodations, including the stunning Honeymoon Suite, which is a replica of the old house chapel. Done in warm Mediterranean colors, it is simple and elegant, and like the other spacious and airy bedrooms, it provides the feeling of a sanctuary. Vineyards surround the property and nearby is the waterfront village of Blenheim, situated at the head of Queen Charlotte Sound.
Marlborough Wine Region
Old St. Mary's Convent
other wine regions to visit on a New Zealand honeymoon ... Gisborne Wineries, Wairarapa Wineries, Marlborough Wineries, Canterbury Wineries.
New Zealand honeymoon: Spa getaways:
Best choice: Share a private thermal pool at the Polynesian Poolsin Rotorua, Taupo, or Hanmer Springs.
Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools & Spa
More romantic New Zealand honeymoon Spa locations ...
La Spa Naturale
La Spa Naturale, the award-winning day spa, located within the idyllic surrounds of Paihia Beach Resort & Spa offers international spa treatments ranging from 30 minutes to five day packages. Signature treatments, including "Naturally Northland" treatments using local produce and clays, are available seven days a week.
Paihia Beach Resort & Spa
116 Marsden Rd., Pahia
Bay of Islands
The Spa at Kauri Cliffs
Matauri Bay Road
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