Cruising into the Marlborough Sounds. © KiwiRail

Take in the spectacular beauty of the Cook Strait crossing

They don’t call this part of the planet ‘The Roaring Forties’ because it’s a sedate little paddle across.

The Cook Strait is renowned as an unpredictable stretch of water, but the ferries here – big, wide, easy-going craft – chart a course on a journey that’s been called one of the most beautiful rides in the world. It’s spectacular.

You ease out of Wellington Harbour, with stunning views of the CBD and those villa-dotted valleys, then make your way across the strait.

It’s only about three hours to Picton and you’ll want to be on deck as you come into the Marlborough Sounds – sedate and absolutely beautiful as inlet after inlet, and secluded beach after secluded beach, slide by.

There’s a good chance you’ll see a dolphin or two, so keep your eyes peeled on this amazing stretch of water.

On the crossing, grab a pie and a pint, watch a movie, put the kids in the playground – have a breather, geezer. These guys do this about 5000 times a year, on any of three boats, Kaiarahi, Aratere and Kaitaki, so just relax. Multiple boats mean there’ll be a crossing that suits your schedule. And because they take both people and cars, you can do the whole drive-on, drive-off thing and be road-bound at the other end before you can say, ‘My, wasn’t that easy, Myrtle.’

Explore more...


Be the first to comment on this page. You cannot post comments until you have logged in. Please log in or register if you don't have an account.

More stories like this

Find out more

Natural attractions

Marlborough Sounds: unspoilt wilderness

Marlborough must have been an amazing place to visit in the last Ice Age when a fair chunk of the Southern Ocean was locked up in the Antarctic icebox.  Read the story . . . 

Find out more

Heritage and history

Wellington: the coolest capital

If you want real drama, come here by air when Wellington’s on song. For our beloved capital city is synonymous for most Kiwis with wind. Read the story . . . 

Find out more

Activities

Marlborough: From the vines to the sea

As the probable landing place of the first waka ever to visit New Zealand, Marlborough is the home of the very first people ever to travel to this country.   Read the story . . . 

Find out more

Activities

Cook Strait crossing: one of the most beautiful in the world

Anyone who has ever done a road trip of New Zealand will have indelible memories of their Cook Strait crossing. Read the story . . . 

Picton Where to stay in

YHA Picton, The Villa

Welcome to The Villa Backpackers, a 115 Year Old Villa in Central Picton. We offer Private & Dorm Rooms including: High Speed Fibre Wi-Fi that . . . More . . . 

Book now

Book now

4.2 /5
4.2 /5
Apartments On The Waterfront Visit website

Tranquil setting overlooking bay and marina with private balconies from which to enjoy the views. Swim in our saltwater swimming pool or enjoy our hot spa. . . . More . . . 

Book now

Book now

3.8 /5
3.8 /5
Best Price Around
Fat Cod Backpackers

Closest to the Interisland ferry (150m), buses, trains, town and the information centre. Modern backacker hostel with doubles, twins, large and small dorms. Next door . . . More . . . 

Book now

Book now

4.8 /5
From $40
4.8 /5
Best Price Around
Picton TOP 10 Holiday Park Visit website

A premier holiday park 1 km east of town with quality amenities and a range of quality accommodation, from motels, self contained units to cabins . . . More . . . 

From $40

Book now

Book now