Our Region

Picton and Queen Charlotte Sound

Picton is a beautiful port town, poised at the edge of the Queen Charlotte Sound, and is home to fantastic cafes, restaurants, galleries and specialty shops.

Go by boat, bike, car, helicopter or plane to explore the intricate waterways beyond, with island bird sanctuaries, secluded bays, protected wildlife, luxurious resorts and the brilliant Queen Charlotte Track.

Picton is a buzzing community with an eclectic mix of cafes and restaurants, many of which feature freshly caught or farmed local seafood.

The foreshore is packed with things to do, from exploring the Edwin Fox, beating the family at mini-golf and window shopping for a boat, to relaxing with friends and a feed of fish and chips beside the beach.

Walking and cycle tracks lead through the native bush around the township, rewarding your efforts with wonderful views of the Marlborough Sounds.

The Queen Charlotte Sound is a coastal paradise, rich with island sanctuaries, where native birdlife thrives, pristine waters, where dolphins, penguin, orca, stingrays and all manner of seabirds can be discovered, and beautiful beaches bordered by native bush. It’s also blessed with resorts and restaurants, so you can find delicious sustenance on your journey.

There are numerous ways of seeing Queen Charlotte Sound, with guided and unguided kayak rentals, yacht and launch charters, mail boats and cruises. Visit island sanctuaries, where New Zealand’s most endangered wildlife flourishes, or historic Ship Cove - explorer James Cook's favourite anchorage during his explorations of New Zealand.

Coffee with a view

Wine & Food

Drive down the Pacific Coastline to The Store, where the coffee comes with a breathtaking view.

Coffee with a view

The Store

Dine at Waterfall Bay

Events

Over the Marlborough Wine & Food Festival weekend in February indulge in extravagant lunch or dinner hosted by Seresin Estate at their beautiful Waterfall Bay venue.

Dine at Waterfall Bay

Blenheim i-SITE Visitor Information Centre

Motuara Island eco sanctuary

Activities

Visit the beautiful Motuara Island in the Queen Charlotte Sound. This predator free sanctuary is home to kiwi, saddlebacks and other native wildlife.

Motuara Island eco sanctuary

Blenheim i-SITE Visitor Information Centre

Paddle the Sounds

Activities

Rent a kayak and paddle your way from bay to bay, choosing to be independent or guided.

Paddle the Sounds

Blenheim i-SITE Visitor Information Centre

Take the mail boat

Activities

Travel from Havelock or Picton and call in to isolated homesteads and secluded bays to deliver mail and groceries to families living in the Marlborough Sounds.

Take the mail boat

Blenheim i-SITE Visitor Information Centre

Walk the Queen Charlotte Track

Activities

Boat to historic Ship Cove to start your walk on the Queen Charlotte Track. Carry your pack or have it transferred each day. Full walk 3-5 days or choose a section.

Walk the Queen Charlotte Track

Blenheim i-SITE Visitor Information Centre

Related Guide:

Queen Charlotte Track
Activities

Queen Charlotte Track

The iconic Queen Charlotte Track, stretching from Ship Cove to Anakiwa, is also a journey from past to present, via panoramic ocean views, thriving native bush and encounters with the likes of weka, fantail and wood pigeon.

The Queen Charlotte Track's 70km offers a rich history, incredible scenery and the freedom to walk or mountain bike without heavy gear.

Stay in resorts and dine in seaside restaurants, homestays and B&Bs, or camp at beautiful DOC sites.

The Queen Charlotte Track is relatively easy walking, taking 3 – 5 days, and is a fantastic mountain bike ride, over 2-3 days. It can also be approached in bite-size pieces, so choose the slice you want and devour it in a day.

Read our guide

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