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Southland entices visitors with its many attractions and scenic highlights. Spectacular coastlines, impressive wildlife, stunning national parks and succulent seafood are among the region’s draw cards.

Invercargill is Southland’s largest centre and is also one of the world’s southernmost cities. Here visitors can discover a sprawling city park and meander through museums and art galleries. Nearby Bluff is famous for its fresh seafood including Bluff oysters. It is also where visitors can catch a ferry across the Foveaux Strait to Stewart Island. 
 
Stewart Island is a haven for a plethora of native bird life and is also the best place to catch a glimpse of the kiwi in its natural environment. Wildlife is also plentiful along the unforgettable Catlins coast - best discovered by driving the Southern Scenic Route.  
 
Visitors searching for the real heartland New Zealand need look no further than Southland.
 

The Best of Southland

  • Cycling - Southland boasts a range of cycling trails including the Around the Mountain Cycle Trail and the Welcome Rock Trails. Invercargill is home to New Zealand’s only indoor velodrome.
  • The Rakiura Track - and one of the spectacular Manaaki Trails, the Tuatapere Hump Ridge Track.
  • Stewart Island - Unspoilt diverse beauty, surrounded by crystal clear water, makes Stewart Island a nature lover’s paradise and the best place in New Zealand to spot a Brown Kiwi in its natural environment. 
  • Southland lays claim to one of the best trout fishing rivers in the world - The Mataura River. With plentiful fish and water so pristine it is often described as ‘gin-clear’, the Mataura Valley is a ‘dry-fly Mecca’ and Gore is known as the ‘Brown Trout Capital of the World’.
  • Invercargill -  is home to stunning Victorian and Edwardian buildings, landscaped gardens and parks. Gore’s Eastern Southland Gallery features the internationally renowned John Money Collection, and the nearby Hokonui Moonshine Museum offers visitors a fascinating glimpse into the region’s illicit whiskey making industry of the early 1900’s.
  • Western Southland is home to New Zealand’s longest jet boat trip. Marvel at the majestic Fiordland mountains while the driver navigates Lake Hauroko and the Wairaurahiri River. 
  • Southern Scenic Route - The spectacular Southern Scenic Route connects Queenstown, Invercargill and Dunedin along the rugged coastline of The Catlins. Stop en route at Curio Bay to discover the fossilised remains of an ancient forest during low tide.  
  • Seafood - Succulent and fresh seafood is plentiful in Southland, making it a mouth-watering destination for seafood lovers. Local delicacies include pāua (abalone), blue cod, salmon, scallops, rock lobsters and of course Bluff oysters. Every year in May Bluff hosts the Bluff Oyster and Food Festival, celebrating this famous delicacy.
  • Spectacular Queens Park is the jewel of Invercargill, impressively sprawling across 200 acres (80 hectares) in the centre of the city. 

Further Information

Videos on the Region and other New Zealand Regions
Southland Regional Tourism Organisation (Southland New Zealand)
Find an i-SITES Visitor Information Centre
www.newzealand.com (Southland)
Check out Southland's promotional video www.youtube.com/watch?v=fZL76r3rT1c&list=TLSgh33UOlbD0

Climate & Weather:

December

Summer

AVG High

18 °C / 64.4 °F

AVG Low

10 °C / 50 °F

June

Winter

AVG High

10 °C/ 50 °F

AVG Low

-1 °C / 30.2 °F

Attractions Southland

  • Nature & wildlife

    Nature & wildlife

    Untouched Southland is known for its rare and unique wildlife - you can expect tuatara, dolphins, whales and more.

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  • Cycling & Mountain Biking

    Cycling & Mountain Biking

    Cyclist and mountain bikers visiting Southland will love Welcome Rock Trails, the Around the Mountains trail, and the dramatic wilderness of the Catlins.

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  • Southern Scenic Route

    Southern Scenic Route

    The Southern Scenic Route is the road to big skies, dramatic scenery and meaningful encounters with native animals. Crowds and queues just don’t come into it. From...

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  • Stirling Point

    Stirling Point

    There are some wonderful photo opportunities in Bluff, where you'll find Stirling Point and Bluff Hill.

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  • Fishing

    Fishing

    Famous for world-class trout, salmon and big game fishing, Southland is an angler’s paradise.

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  • Jet boating

    Jet boating

    Explore breathtaking scenery, untouched river valleys and New Zealand's deepest lake with a jet boat ride in Southland.

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