A charming town tucked away in the Marlborough region of New Zealand’s South Island, Picton is akin to a painting come alive. The town boasts many unique characteristics – it owns one-fifth of New Zealand’s coastline, has enviable weather, and is a dreamy destination complete with exotic landscapes and a luxurious lifestyle. From being a center for trade in the 19th century, it has evolved into a tourist destination of much splendour and style. Here’s a listicle on the best of Picton.
As a landscape that words cannot describe enough, the Marlborough Sounds is a collection of sunken river valleys that abruptly give way to steep forested hills along a coastline of shy inlets and quaint bays. The region comprises three water bodies – Queen Charlotte, Kenepuru and Pelorous Sounds that form scattered islands in pockets. Motuara, Blumine and Allports Islands are popular destinations for a relaxed walk through forests, or for a peek into a few historical sites. Adventure lovers have a plethora of options that range from trekking and camping to mountain biking and kayaking.
Marlborough is a region that elevated New Zealand to the international arena on account of its exotic wines. Accounting for 62% of the country’s total vineyard area, Marlborough is particularly known for its Sauvignon blanc, Pinot noir and Chardonnay. While most vineyards are located around Blenheim, Renwick and Cloudy Bay, Seddon in the the south, too, contributes to the success story. Marisco Vineyards, Oyster Bay and Grove Mill are few of the popular vineyards that make for a compelling visit.
Edwin Fox is acknowledged as the ninth oldest ship in the world. Built in India and of teak, it is regarded as the last surviving ship that carried convicts to Australia. It was instrumental during the Crimean War and was also used in the transportation of passengers and cargo. Its arrival in Picton is recorded as on 12th January, 1897, after which it was used as a freezer ship and a coal storage container. Today, it is visited by millions of tourists and is admired for its unique build and structure at the Edwin Fox Maritime Museum.
There is a small village at the head of Pelorus Sound in the Marlborough region. A drive from this coastal village to Picton makes for a 40km stretch of absolutely fascinating landscape. Whether you have opted for a car rental or are on your own, be sure to spare a day for this drive that will leave you awestruck and spellbound. The stretch is dotted with several art galleries that stand proof of the region’s strong connect with local arts and crafts. Winding roads, forested thickets and a horizon generously coloured by a setting sun are just a few of the many captivating sceneries one cannot miss out on.