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The New Zealand Wine Experience

James Cameron visits New Zealand's world famous vineyards, on stunning shorelines and amidst alpine peaks.

Sun-drenched vineyards

The Hawke’s Bay, Martinborough, Marlborough and Central Otago are signature New Zealand wine regions and home to a number different vineyards. Smaller wine-producing areas include Auckland, Gisborne and Waipara.

All of New Zealand’s 650 vineyards benefit from the moderating effects of an island climate – with long sunshine hours and nights cooled by the sea breeze. As a result, you'll discover wine that is as unforgettable as the landscapes. 


If you drive over the Rimutaka Ranges and you go into Featherston and then down into Martinborough you get into the wine country, and it’s just stunning. It’s just one great view after another. There are some really world-class wines there.

James Cameron World-renowned filmmaker

World-class wine without the crowds

The secret of New Zealand's wine regions is that they've not been majorly overcome by large commercial wine companies, and have maintained an intimate and boutique feeling. A lower volume of visitors means that those who visit experience a personal level of service and interaction, and vineyard staff will often go above and beyond for the wine-interested traveller. Meet the winemakers and let them share the journey of their wines with you.

There’s a vigour, there’s experimentation, people are excited about it, they’re passionate about it, they wanna talk about it. There’s a personal touch. You can meet the winemaker, they’re happy to show you where they grow.

James Cameron World-renowned filmmaker
New Zealand
When you’re biking the Queenstown Trail, enticing food and wine opportunities pop up at regular inte, New Zealand

By Miles Holden

Whether it's by bike, bus or car, there are plenty of vineyards to explore near Queenstown.




  • Bicycle vineyard tours
  • Alfresco dining


  • By bicycle: 10 mins from Queenstown

Fabulous food experiences

For fine dining amid jagged peaks or lush native bush, try one of New Zealand’s many remote luxury lodges. For urban eats, try a waterfront restaurant at Auckland’s Viaduct or immerse yourself in the Wellington coffee and craft beer culture. Or for a truly authentic experience, head to Rotorua and taste traditional Maori food from a hāngi earth oven. And if you’re here in the summer months, why not try one of the many wine and food festivals on offer. A few favourites include:

  • Bluff Oyster Festival
  • West Coast Wildfoods Festival
  • Dunedin Cadbury Chocolate Carnival
Mahurangi Oysters, Auckland

By Miles Holden

For a true ocean-to-plate experience, head out to Matakana (an hour north of Auckland central) to enjoy a taste of fresh oysters.




  • Mahurangi Oysters
  • Vineyards on Waiheke Island
  • Matakana Farmers' Market


  • By car: 1 hr from Auckland

Indulging in fine New Zealand food and wine is just one way to experience the best this country has to offer. Why not compliment your trip with a whale and dolphin swimming experience, an invigorating thermal spa, or explore the natural landscapes and vast wilderness areas of New Zealand through hiking.

Explore the Wine Regions of New Zealand

Where to Next

Food & Wine →

New Zealand Alpine Experience →

Journeys and Landscapes →