Ideal duration: 2-3 Days
Best Time: December to May Read More
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This charming town situated on the northern end of New Zealand’s South Island is known for its eclectic personality. The number of boutique cafes that serve up scrumptiously good coffee and food, art galleries, and great restaurants all combine to form a seaside town that has a distinctly unique vibe. However, Picton’s claim to fame comes as a result of it being the gateway to the grand Marlborough Sounds. Picton acts as a base to explore the vast Marlborough Sounds and the Queen Charlotte Track, some of New Zealand’s most popular tourist destinations. A host of water sport activities like sailing and SCUBA diving are particularly popular amongst the traveller community. Especially notable is the ability to go SCUBA diving to the shipwrecked remains of the Soviet-era passenger cruise ship, the Mikhail Lermontov, in addition to other activities like kayaking and hiking.
Picton is also known as the gateway to the Marlborough and Nelson Bay regions and consequently attracts a fair amount of foot traffic for this reason alone. Picton is also a hugely important port-town and links the road and rail networks of the North Island to the South Island. Picton’s strategic position at the mouth of the Marlborough Sound and the propensity to see stunning views of the area is a major reason why cruise ships always go through Picton.
Boat cruises, wildlife cruises, fishing cruises, scenic cruises and a host of other cruises form a major chunk of Picton’s economy and drives the tourist business and operators like E-Ko cruises are reputed hosts. Picton is also home to a vibrant artist and craftspeople community that is attracted to the region because of the high-quality of materials. Glass-blowers, sculptors, artists, painters, and potters are part of a thriving business environment and sell their wares at boutiques and galleries around town.
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