Section One Marlborough
SECTION ONE: PAGE THREE
Wine and cuisine
Marlborough is New Zealand’s largest grape-growing and wine-making region. The Marlborough region is an ideal wine touring destination offering visitors:
- Full day/ half-day wine tours with flexible itineraries
- Winery lunches created with fresh local produce
- Wine & food courses
- Independent touring options
Visiting vineyards in Marlborough
Many of the vineyards are open to the public and have cellar doors and restaurants. It is not out of the ordinary to actually meet the winemakers themselves. Activities at vineyards could include:
- A guided tour including wine tastings
- Sampling wines at the cellar door
- Purchasing bottles of wine
- Dining at the vineyard restaurant
Montana Brancott Winery Visitor Centre and Restaurant, Blenheim
New Zealand’s largest producer of wine has set up a state of the art wine centre and production facility in Blenheim. Wine tours include a full audio visual presentation and tasting. Tours run every hour from 10am to 3pm for more visit the Visit Us section of the Montana website: www.montana.co.nz
Other cuisine experiences
- Tippling: distilleries or local boutique breweries are open to taste locally produced fruit brandies, liqueurs and beers.
- Prenzel Distilling Company: a fruit distillery based in Marlborough. www.prenzel.com
- Orchard visits: seasonal fruit, in particular Marlborough cherries (December to January).
- Olive growers: The latest horticultural trend in Marlborough is to grow olives. Visitors can see these farms in action at:
- Riverstone Lodge, Waihopai Valley: accommodation set in an olive block. www.riverstone-lodge.com
- Seresin Estate, Wairau Valley: A wine producer now growing olive oil. www.seresin.co.nz
- Marlborough Farmers’ Market: Sunday morning shopping for fresh local produce www.marlboroughfarmersmarket.tk
Blenheim is the base from which explorations of Marlborough's wineries can begin.
Many visitors to Marlborough arrive by ferry through a maze of deep coves and bays. There are opportunities to sail, paddle, kayak or motor through this picturesque maritime area known as the Marlborough Sounds. Fine restaurants and accommodation lodges are scattered throughout the Sounds.
- Queen Charlotte Track (three to four days): a popular walkway (71km/44 miles), with many entry and exit points and numerous top-class resorts and accommodation providers along its length. Pre-booking accommodation is recommended particularly during the busy summer months. Guided walking packages can be pre-booked for your clients that they can undertake independently or with a guide. The package includes accommodation and transportation to and from the track.
- Queen Charlotte Sound and Track day trips: for visitors wanting a one-day excursion many operators offer daily trips into the waters of the Sound to view the marine and bird life of the area, and to walk parts of the Queen Charlotte Track. Boats depart from Picton daily.
- Sea kayaking: guided or independent trips from Picton.
- Dive shipwrecks: the wrecks Mikhail Lermontov, a Russian cruise liner and the Hippalos, a 120-year-old wooden barque can be explored on a dive trip.
- Sailing: visitors can charter their own boat or hire a skipper to cruise the Sounds.
- Fishing Charters: half and full day options available.
Check operator details in your New Zealand product database or visit www.destinationmarlborough.com
Recommended base or departure point
Picton is the main departure point for excursions into the Marlborough Sounds.