Picton is a small picturesque town in New Zealand that is often the first destination for many tourists making a tour of the South Island. The town’s sheltered harbour welcomes the regular ferry service that transports passengers across the Cook Strait from Wellington on the North Island and is also the gateway to one of the area’s biggest tourist attractions, Marlborough Sounds. This seaside town is an attractive place for a vacation, enhanced by its pretty marina, relaxed atmosphere and crystal blue waters. In the surrounding area, visitors can enjoy a wealth of scenic activities by boat or on foot in an unspoilt area of natural beauty. Situated on Queen Charlotte Sound, visitors can take a boat trip from the town’s waterfront to discover the beautiful landscape and local wildlife, which includes dolphins, blue penguins and orcas. For the adventurous traveler, the Queen Charlotte Track offers an outstanding walk through forests, bays and coves, which begins in Anakiwa and reaches Ship Cove at the other end of Queen Charlotte Sound. This secluded cove has special historical significance for being the place where Captain Cook anchored his ship The Endeavour in 1770. South of Picton you can visit an area of historical importance that was only discovered in the 1940s. The Wairau Bar is the archaeological site of a prehistoric buried village that is now known to be the first settlers of New Zealand. It is one of the oldest sites in New Zealand and a must-see for anyone with an interest in the country’s history. Perfectly located at the head of the South Island, Picton is a pleasant base for enjoying the local landscape or traveling south to discover the extensive natural wonders of the South Island.
Picton is best enjoyed between the months of December and February, when temperatures are dry and warm.
Rainfall in this area is highest during the wet season between June and August. The temperature during these months is generally lower, so you can find cheaper prices on accommodations during this season.
Renting a car in town is extremely easy and affordable with many rental companies being located in the town. There are also bus and shuttle services that run from the ferry port and travel to other towns around the South Island, such as Christchurch. The town itself is best explored on foot, as there is no public bus service, but you can also take a water taxi from the town’s waterfront.