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Picton holidays will take you to one of New Zealand’s most picturesque seaside towns. Steeped in history, the beautiful waterside village offers both adventure and culture, with cruises around the stunning Queen Charlotte Sound, and unrivalled wine tasting in Marlborough.

Picton isn’t just a ferry stop. Nestled by Queen Charlotte Sound - a name given by Captain Cook in 1770 - the glistening waterfront has become a bustling mainstay for both families and couples. Take in the coastline on a cruise around the Marlborough Sands, or explore the lush landscapes by foot at Queen Charlotte Track. The crystal-clear waters of the Marlborough Sounds is home to an abundance of marine life, with dolphins and humpback whales making regular appearances.

Marlborough holidays are perfect for both intrepid explorers and sunset-seeking couples, with endless activities, gourmet dining and of course, wine tasting that’s second to none.

Experience breath-taking views with Picton Holidays

Whether you want to dip your toes in the crystal waters, take a hike up to breath-taking vistas, or enjoy some arts and culture, Picton holidays have it all. New Zealand’s largest wine region is on your doorstep, with Marlborough being just a 15 minute drive from Picton. Explore the stunning landscape while stopping off at the capital’s best wineries, before visiting the Millennium Public Art Gallery.

Rich in maritime history, Picton has some historical treasures as well, with Waikawa Marae, a local monument where you can learn more about the Maori heritage, and Edin Fox, the world’s oldest merchant ship. The shimmering waterfront will entice you back in no time for some kayaking or a boat trip around the world-renowned Marlborough Sounds. Just remember to keep your eyes peeled for the rare Hector’s dolphin.

Destination Highlights

  • Explore the stunning Queen Charlotte Track - with trails among breath-taking views of Queen Charlotte Sound and Kenepuru Sound
  • Cruise the majestic Marlborough Sounds, where the mountains meet the crystal-clear waters
  • Fill your cultural boots at the Millennium Public Art Gallery, or peruse the Artisan Market
  • Taste some of New Zealand’s best wines, at the region’s finest vineyards in the Wairau and Awatere valleys

Great sample itineraries


Here's a selection of popular itineraries to give you some ideas. But almost anything's possible so call us now and we'll create an amazing holiday just for you.

Milford

Self Drive Tour Of New Zealand South Island

  • 15 Days
Our self drive tour of New Zealand’s South Island takes in some of the area’s most spectacular destinations and packs...
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Self drive holidays
Milford

Auckland To Christchurch Tour

  • 17 Days
  • Guide Price £6,495 PP
Set out on a New Zealand adventure and get a true taste for the country on an escorted New Zealand...
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Cultural holidays
a man standing on top of a mountain

New Zealand Splendour

  • 23 Days
  • Guide Price £7,489 PP
Our New Zealand Splendour tour is ideal for travellers who love the outdoors and want to experience everything this vast...
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Escorted tours holidays
a snow covered mountain

Small Group Escorted Tour Of New Zealand

  • 21 Days
Spend 21 days exploring an endlessly stunning country and get a taste of the fascinating Māori culture during your Essence...
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Escorted tours holidays

Explore Picton and Marlborough

Time Zone

+13 hours

Flight Time

London Heathrow to Auckland is around 24 hours, typically with one stop in Singapore. From Auckland, you can get a direct flight to Marlborough (Blenheim airport) and take a shuttle (25 minutes) to Picton.

Currency

New Zealand Dollar

Visa Information

UK citizens or passport holders do not need visas for trips up to six months.

Language

English

Health Info

No Mandatory vaccinations required. It's important to contact your GP for the latest recommendations.

Marlborough wine and food festival

Marlborough’s Wine and Food Festival draws visitors to the region from far and wide every February. It features delicious wines from throughout New Zealand, including the world famous Sauvignon Blanc. When it comes to dining, small gourmet producers set up stalls and sell everything from oysters to lamb and pork belly. Enter the best dressed competition, listen to expert chefs and wine connoisseurs or simply wander through the grounds taking it all in.

Edwin Fox Maritime Museum

One of the world’s oldest ships, the Edwin Fox is permanently displayed in Picton, where visitors can discover its fascinating history. Built for the East India Company in 1853, the ship is made from teak and saul timber, and is reported to have carried Florence Nightingale during the Crimean War. Having sailed to Australia, the UK, India, China, Cuba and many other ports in between, the ship has a long history, which finished in 1897 when she docked for the last time in Picton.

Marlborough Sounds

Marlborough Sounds is a collection of ancient river valleys which are filled by the Pacific Ocean and stretch for 150km along the South Island’s coast. They’re surrounded by luscious mountains and forests, and house dolphins, seals and even penguins, which can be seen playing in the waters. There are over 50 reserves to see, some with predator-less islands where flightless birds and other endangered animals remain protected.

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Lucy, Destination Specialist

“The glistening waterfront is packed with things to do; from exploring the Edwin Fox, beating the family at mini golf and window shopping for a boat, to relaxing with friends and tucking into fresh fish and chips beside the beach. Take your picnic hamper for a sunny lunch by the waterfront.”

 

Lucy
Destination Specialist
Charlie, Destination Manager

“The Queen Charlotte Sound is a coastal paradise, rich with island sanctuaries, where native birdlife thrives and dolphins, penguins, orcas, stingrays and all manner of rare seabirds can be discovered. Shimmering beaches are bordered by native bush, making it a beautiful backdrop for your next holiday photos.”

 

Charlie
Destination Manager

Events & Festivals

Festivals and events are wonderful to include during your Picton and Marlborough holiday, offering a glimpse into the country’s authentic culture and traditions.

Marlborough Food & Wine Festival

The countdown to New Zealand’s best food festival begins when Marlborough Food & Wine Festival comes to town. Taking place at the beginning of February every year, the festival attracts visitors from all over with its delicious local produce, fine wines and world-class entertainment. Sample wine from over 40 wineries, or tuck into a mouth-watering choice of international food. It’s the perfect way to immerse yourself in the culture during your Picton and Marlborough holidays. 

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