South Island: one of the world’s very best hiking destinations
If you’re searching for a holiday that will leave you with memories you’ll treasure for the rest of your life, you can’t go wrong with a trip to New Zealand. The magical and mysterious South Island is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful places on planet Earth and if you’re into hiking, you’ll struggle to find better tracks and paths than those on offer here. If you’re planning a tailor-made New Zealand holiday, here are some of the best hikes to tackle on your travels.
The Fox Glacier Te Moeka o Tuawe Valley Walk is a short 2.5km walk, which treats you to stunning views of the glistening ice sheets of this famous glacier. On your way, you’ll enjoy incredible vistas of the valley below and you can enjoy unrivalled views of the ice scars and rock formations forged by the movement of ice through the ages. Beware of adverse weather conditions and always check the forecast before you set off. If snow, high winds or torrential rain are predicted, the track may be shut to avoid contact with collapsing ice sheets or rock fall.
Mount Stokes track
The Mount Stokes track is located within the beautiful surroundings of Marlborough Sounds. The 6km track is an ideal half-day trip. You’ll need to invest blood, sweat and tears at certain parts, but your hard work will be rewarded with views right across to the North Island and Picton Bay. Just before you reach the summit of the climb, you’ll encounter shaded forest paths, which provide respite on a hot day.
The Abel Tasman track
The Abel Tasman track is a glorious coastal path, which covers around 50km of the coastline of the top of South Island. This is an ideal walk to blow away the cobwebs, work your muscles and enjoy unspoiled views of the golden beaches dotted along the water’s edge. There are plenty of campsites along the way if you fancy pitching your tent, lighting a fire and enjoying a night under the stars before finishing off the trek the day after.
Milford Sound is one of New Zealand’s most precious natural gems and if you’re lucky enough to visit on a clear day, there’s nothing better than putting your walking shoes on and getting to know this beautiful part of the country. The track is very popular and you’ll need to book a guided tour. On your adventure, you’ll travel through tree-lined valleys and climb mountain paths, as well as learning all about the cultural significance of Milford Sound.