There is nowhere on the South Island—or all of New Zealand—that is quite like the town of Akaroa. Not only is Akaroa one of the best day trips from Christchurch, but it’s a hidden enclave on the backside of the peninsula that marches to the beat of its own drum. For one thing, Akaroa is French. Not so French that it’s the official language, but the town was founded by French colonials and the influence is still very apparent.
In 2001, when audiences were first introduced to the Lord of the Rings trilogy, millions of viewers around the globe were immediately enchanted by Peter Jackson’s fantasyland. In addition to the captivating script and the award-winning performances, what stole the show for many viewers was the mesmerizing beauty of Middle Earth. For over a decade after the release of the films, travelers to New Zealand took part in Middle Earth tours for the chance to experience the beauty for themselves. From the valleys of Glenorchy that served as Ithlien Camp, to the summit of Mount Sunday where Edoras was filmed, the South Island of New Zealand is rung with sites where the Fellowship journeyed on their epic quest.
Nearly all travelers who spend time in New Zealand agree there is a magic which permeates the country. From the peaks of the Southern Alps to the sands of Cape Reinga, New Zealand exudes an intoxicating charm that creates an indelible stamp on the memory.
For some travelers, the islands of New Zealand hold such a romantic allure that it becomes the spot where they’ll exchange their vows. If the day of marriage is meant to be one of the most enchanting moments of a lifetime, then it only makes sense to spend the day in one of the most enchanting landscapes on the planet. Also, with the legalization of same-sex marriages, many couples in same-sex relationships are choosing New Zealand as the site of their wedding.
At a latitude of 45° South, Central Otago is officially recognized as the southernmost wine region in the world. Just because of it’s location, however, don’t think that Central Otago is a novelty region where the wine is little more than bitter swill. As anyone who goes wine tasting in Central Otago will realize, the opposite is actually true. In addition to award-winning varietals of Reisling, Gewurtztraminer, and Pinot Gris, Central Otago is best known for producing arguably the world’s best Pinot Noir.
From now until October 15, 2013, when you buy any New Zealand tour, you get 10% OFF of your 2nd tour! That’s right – Buy any tour, save 10% on your 2nd!
Spanning 43 miles of wooded terrain in the famous Marlborough Sounds, the Queen Charlotte Track is often considered as one of the best hikes on the South Island of New Zealand. Although not officially listed as one of the “Great Walks of New Zealand”, hiking on the Queen Charlotte Track is one of the most popular activities in the greater Marlborough area.