Renowned for its stunning natural landscapes, from long golden beaches to untouched, wild forests, Nelson Tasman offers plenty of outdoor activities for the whole family. Ride on the world’s longest flying fox at Cable Bay Adventure Park, go on a kayaking adventure, or visit Brook Waimārama Sanctuary, one of South Island’s largest wildlife sanctuaries and meet some native birds.
Take the family on a day trip to Orana Wildlife Park and get up close with the animal kingdom. Just walking distance from the Christchurch Airport, you and the family can easily visit the International Antarctic Centre and experience what polar life is like – find out what it’s like to be in the midst of an Antarctic storm.
The untamed, natural wilderness.
Explore glacier country
Cycle through ancient rainforests
Walk 20 metres above the ground
Explore glacier country with the kids. With Fox Glacier and Franz Josef being the most easily accessible to visitors, you can book a guided walk and take the family out to get a closer look at these large natural wonders. Heli-hiking is also a great way to get up onto the glaciers with plenty of energy to spare for walking across the ice.
Grab some pancakes and then check out the Punakaiki Pancake rocks, cycle on the Wilderness Trail, or admire the blue waters at Hokitika Gorge. For a more educational experience, visit the Brunner Mine Site or the Shantytown Heritage Park – there are plenty of things to do for all ages to suit any type of family holiday!
Offers diverse, world-class experiences for the whole family to enjoy.
Zoom down the Skyline Luge
Experience indoor skydiving
Horse ride alongside glacial-fed rivers
For epic views across Queenstown and Lake Wakatipu, bring the family up the Skyline Gondola. Zoom down on the luge and re-energise at the café. Down by the lake, take a cruise on the classic steamship TSS Earnslaw – this can be combined with farm tours, horse treks or simply a tasty lunch or dinner option.
Escape the bustle of Queenstown and get away to Wānaka, another lakefront destination with a laidback vibe. Relax waterside among the cafes and restaurants, with perhaps a jaunt over to Puzzling World – a truly unique place with the world’s first 3D ‘Great Maze’, illusion rooms and other eccentric activities and architecture.
Try out fishing with the family at Hook Wānaka, explore the purple fields at Wānaka Lavender Farm or change up the pace and go jet boating, or take on one of the many walking trails around the area.
One of the world's greatest small cities, filled with charm and character.
Explore New Zealand’s only castle
Voyage across Waikouaiti River in a waka
Get up close to unique marine life
Known for being one of the best-preserved Victorian and Edwardian cities in the Southern Hemisphere, Dunedin is the home to New Zealand’s only castle, Larnach Castle. Add to the educational experience and visit Tūhura science centre at Otago Museum, which takes science to another level with more than 43 hands-on interactive activities for the kids.
Home to penguins, seals, albatross and many more species, there are plenty of wildlife tours available for the family to experience. The Royal Albatross Centre, found at the tip of the Otago Peninsula, is the only mainland in the world with a breeding colony of northern royal albatross. Colonies of little blue penguins - the smallest species of penguin of all – are also found in this region.
Popular family-friendly activities in the South Island