The 10 Best Things to Do in Marlborough Region, New Zealand

January 26, 2018 Rosalyn Ihle

The fertile soil and temperate climate of the Wairau River Valley provide the perfect conditions for a wine lover's paradise. Marlborough's thousands of acres of vineyards and dozens of wineries create delectable wines of diverse varietals, from full-bodied Pinot Noir to herbaceous Sauvignon Blanc. The countryside boasts unsurpassed beauty, with its majestic mountains, verdant vineyards and the labyrinth of waterways that make up the Marlborough Sounds.
Restaurants in Marlborough Region

1. Marlborough Sounds

Picton, New Zealand +64 3-577 5587
Excellent
88%
Good
10%
Satisfactory
1%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 558 reviews

Marlborough Sounds

Reviewed By D P - Wellington, New Zealand

The Marlborough Sounds are a stunning place and quintessentially part of the real New Zealand. No good saying you’ve been to Auckland that’s not the real NZ. To experience NZ head down South and take in Gods own. Surround yourself if nature, bird song and stunning scenery. A trip here is a trip to remember and hold a place in your heart.

2. Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre

79 Aerodrome Road, Blenheim 7272, New Zealand +64 3-579 1305
Excellent
84%
Good
12%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 1 reviews

Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre

Omaka Avation Heritage Centre presents the outstanding Knights of the Sky exhibition, featuring Sir Peter Jackson's own collection of World War One aircraft and artifacts. The story of aviation, its development and the men that flew them, is brought to life in sensational sets created by the internationally acclaimed talent of WingNut Films and Weta Workshop. The aircraft are a unique mix of originals and replicas, some of which are flyable and/or can only be seen at Omaka including the Caproni CA.22. The Centre boasts an extensive collection of memorabilia and these are divided into two areas, one devoted to the Allies and the other to the Central Powers. The Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre is extremely privileged to be the caretakers of these historical treasures, which include personal items of Manfred von Richthofen, the legendary Red Baron, top scoring Allied ace Frenchman Rene Fonck, top scroring American ace Eddie Rickenbacker, Germany's Ernst Udet ranked second only to Richtohfen when WW1 ended and the infamous Herman Goering. The Knights of the Sky Exhibition is a display like no other and you don't have to be an aviation enthusiast to enjoy it!

Reviewed By Jacqui H - Carlingford, Australia

This display will satisfy military enthusiasts as well as those who might not choose this subject as a first choice. The stories are told in a very with very engaging staging due in no small part to the involvement of the WETA geniuses. You could easily spend half a day there if you wanted. There is a cafe so you can have a break between the two wars if you need to. An excellent centre, put this on your must visit list.

3. Yealands Estate Winery

Corner of Seaview and Reserve Roads, Seddon 7285, New Zealand +64 3-575 7618 ext. 7300
Excellent
87%
Good
13%
Satisfactory
0%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 116 reviews

Yealands Estate Winery

When Peter Yealands first discovered a little-known, but spectacular, corner of Marlborough, an incredible story began to unfold. By 08.08.08, through a bold vision and a capacity for sheer hard work that few could comprehend, Peter was standing alongside his world-leading carboNZeroCertTM Yealands Estate winery with his sights firmly set upon becoming the world's most sustainable wine producer. Combining the very latest cutting-edge green technology and highly innovative thinking, the Yealands name quickly became synonymous with a passion for crafting ultra-premium wines in the most environmentally-friendly manner. Our cosy and intimate Cellar Door provides a relaxing hideaway where you can discover the Yealands Estate story and try our quality portfolio of wines whilst relaxing in unhurried comfort. Recently awarded the International Winner for Sustainable Wine Tourism Practices, our Cellar Door demonstrates our world leadership in sustainable wine production. Join us for a complimentary tasting of our wines and take in the picturesque views across the vineyard and Cook Strait on our self-guided vineyard tour.

Reviewed By MAXINE B - Gisborne, Australia

Turn off in Seddon and follow the signs to Yealands Estate. You can watch a 10 minute clip of the history of the estate and then wander into the cellar door to try the tastings of the day. Simon will guide you through them. He recommended we took the car and drove the 7km along the white road around the estate (pamphlet supplied with all the necessary landmarks to look out for, like the friendly chickens, babydoll sheep, pigs, the classical music playing to the vines, one of the largest solar panel arrays in NZ, breathtaking views across the Cook Strait and many more) and with with a good map. An unbelievable winery with amazing views and the day we were there was extraordinarily windy.

4. Framingham Wines

19 Conders Bend Road, Renwick 7243, New Zealand +64 3-572 8884
Excellent
84%
Good
14%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 105 reviews

Framingham Wines

Visit us...Our winery and cellar door is nestled in 17 hectares of vineyards and beautifully manicured Gardens, with spectacular views of the Richmond Ranges. We are open everyday for complimentary wine tastings.Turn down Conders Bend Road from State Highway 6 between the Wairau River Bridge and Renwick to taste Framingham wines at their source. Just 10 minutes’ drive from Blenheim on the main road to Nelson, we’re open everyday from 10.30am until 4.30pm. Relax in the deco-style wooden panelled tasting room, or enjoy the Sunshine and roses in our sheltered courtyard. Let us give you an insight into how our wines are crafted to make the most of the Wairau Valley climate as you savour our diverse range. Wander the vineyard or venture downstairs to explore the cellar, where we keep vintages past and present.

Reviewed By 4xWandering_Kiwis - Auckland, New Zealand

The Gardens are stunning and the cellar door beautiful.
Very welcoming and friendly staff who offered far more wines for tasting than on the list for the day - complimentary as well. Tasting tailored to our wine preferences which was a very nice touch. Thoroughly enjoyed the experience and the opportunity to have our purchases shipped straight home.

5. Queen Charlotte Track

Marlborough Sounds, Picton 7220, New Zealand +64 3-573 5432
Excellent
75%
Good
21%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 726 reviews

Queen Charlotte Track

Reviewed By Mike S

It was nice to have a trek that could be biked. I was a bit nervous as I am an intermediate skilled rider, and the term "advanced" was used everywhere for rating the difficulty. Using the coloring system I'm used to, I would say this...MoreThank you for your lovely review and recommendations, it is great to hear you enjoyed your time biking the track. :)

6. Pollard Park

Parker Street, Blenheim, New Zealand
Excellent
75%
Good
22%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
0%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 205 reviews

Pollard Park

Reviewed By ruthandvern - Wilton, California

Sadly the weather had been quite above average recently and the rhododendrons have finished blooming, but we were very excited to find the Sequoia Redwood. The Various areas of the garden have lovely representatives of the subject exhibits. The Fragrant garden was really a joy, some wisteria remaining bloom, the jasmine wafting in the breeze. Tiny flowers with large scents, just wonderful. The Portage garden was like being at home in my garden. Everything you'd want to find was growing. The English pea flowers were about to give way to the blooming peas, the pole beans were in full bloom, as were the citrus. Rosemary, sage, lettuce, artichokes, a very tall variety were also prevalent. Espardille (sp) Apples, multi types of berries.There was even a patch of celery. The Rose Garden took the longest to move through with the huge number of varieties - I think we took 252 pictures in our 2.5 hours. It was going on 5:30 was we left. Great local garden.

7. Queen Charlotte Sound

Queen Charlotte Walk, Picton, New Zealand +64 3-573 6175
Excellent
76%
Good
19%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
0%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 270 reviews

Queen Charlotte Sound

Reviewed By Oldjack - Greater Melbourne, Australia

Pick a nice sunny day and the scenery is as good as gets. There are various ways to see the Sound and of course a cruise is best but you get some great views and a feel for the place from Karaka Point and Waikawa Bay, a short drive from Picton.

8. Edwin Fox Maritime Museum

1 Auckland St, Picton 7220, New Zealand +64 3-573 6868
Excellent
69%
Good
27%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 292 reviews

Edwin Fox Maritime Museum

The Edwin Fox is a great example of NZ Maritime History, 161 years old this year and currently listed as the 9th oldest ship in the world, the oldest surviving merchant ship, last surviving convict ship that took convicts to Australia and last wooden NZ immigrant ship and was also used to transport troops to the Crimean war.Come step aboard, go into the hull of the ship and visit the dry dock to get a real feel of the size of the ship and indeed what voyages would of been like!Open everyday group bookings and guided tours by arrangement.

Reviewed By stjohnbeachlover - St. Louis, Missouri

This ship has so much history - going all the way back to 1853 when it was built in India. It has served as transport for troops, immigrants, and even criminals. There are actual beds still inside. It is the world's 9th oldest ship! There is a short video and many displays describing the ship and it's history. There is also a small gift shop inside. We were able to get tickets online through Book me at a discount. We were able to tour the whole ship in less than a hour.

9. Saint Clair Family Estate Vineyard Kitchen

13 Selmes Road | Rd3, Blenheim 7273, New Zealand +64 3-570 5280
Excellent
71%
Good
23%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 183 reviews

Saint Clair Family Estate Vineyard Kitchen

Come and visit Saint Clair Family Estate Vineyard Kitchen to relax, sit back and enjoy the Saint Clair experience. The newly renovated establishment is situated within a unique vineyard setting with views extending past the vines towards the ever changing and dramatic Richmond Range. The sunny courtyard offers outdoor dining with some dining options amongst the vines. On a cooler day an extended veranda section can ensure customers continue to have the vineyard feel while being sheltered from the elements through extensive floor to ceiling glass sliding doors. A cosy fire provides ambience and warmth during the New Zealand winter, an ideal settling to relax and enjoy Saint Clair's award winning wines. A perfect place for a visit for morning or afternoon tea with a selection of muffins and hot drinks available all day. The extensive menu constantly changes reflecting some of the best seasonal produce and finest delicacies Marlborough as to offer. There are a range of options available to meet any dietary requirements. The wine tasting counter is an area to discover the diversity of Saint Clair with a large selection of award winning wines available for tasting daily via an impressive wine preservation system. In addition to these wines there is an extensive range of craft beers from kiwi Breweries including Pan Head, Parrot Dog and Marlborough's own Renaissance. A couple of different flavours of locally produced Adam and Eve Cider are also on offer and New Zealand owned brands make up the eclectic array of non-alcoholic beverages. The Saint Clair Vineyard Kitchen is available for private functions and offers catering options to suit all budgets with flexibility to ensure a successful event. Please contact us to discuss further. When visiting the Saint Clair Vineyard Kitchen make sure you cross the car park to Pātaka - a gourmet food store proudly specialising in New Zealand artisan food and offering uniquely New Zealand inspired gifts.

Reviewed By boaster - Horsham

My husband had previously tried their Pinot noir on this holiday and wanted to try others. Noticed it provided meals so we decided to eat here to. They could not have been more accommodating or friendlier. We tried wine tasting first - I loved their Gewürztraminer and my husband tried the reds but chose a reserve Pinot Noir for lunch.
I had tomato risotto with olives and salad - my husband fish and garden vegetables. We both agreed they were delicious and up there with any top restaurant.

10. Wither Hills Cellar Door and Restaurant

211 New Renwick Road, Blenheim 7272, New Zealand +64 3-520 8284
Excellent
69%
Good
23%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 216 reviews

Wither Hills Cellar Door and Restaurant

The Wither Hills Cellar Door and Restaurant allows you to appreciate the true beauty of the Marlborough region, while enjoying a comprehensive tasting of our award winning wines, matched with locally sourced produce. A blend of contemporary design and character - the perfect location for a leisurely break with friends and family.

Reviewed By Annie B - East Grinstead, United Kingdom

Wither hills winery is a must do if in the Blenheim area of Marlborough. We were greeted by the delightful and knowledgable Hector who guided us through our tastings which were very reasonably priced send that was written off when we bought a couple of bottles to take home. Regrettably not more as on our travels. We had a fab lunch in the pretty Gardens with awesome views and the waiting staff were absolutely lovely. I'm a fussy vegetarian and the cheese platter as a main was beautifully presented, delicious and more than plentiful.

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