Monday, May 09, 2005


Marlborough is not about cigarettes, nor is it a street in Boston’s Back Bay. No, Marlborough is a postcard-perfect region of the spectacular South Island of New Zealand. Marlborough is about sunshine, vineyards, whale watching, rugged beaches, and snow capped mountains. It is a visitor’s dream.

Seals play in the pounding surf, sleep on the rocks, and bark at onlookers. Whales glide through the offshore waters, occasionally breaching in front of the huge mountain backdrop. Penguins fly through their undersea world, and nest on deserted beaches. Sheep graze languidly atop the verdant green hills, watching it all unfold before their eyes.

We used Marlborough as a jumping off point for the North Island. Lynn’s parents, Joyce and Shel, flew in to Christchurch to join us for the last few weeks of the World Tour. After granting them a couple days to beat jet lag, we drove north towards Marlborough, intent on discovering the perfect end to our South Island Tour. We were not disappointed.

From Christchurch, vineyards stretch north to Marlborough Sound, filling broad valleys and flanking deep green hillsides. Quaint towns dot the landscape, making it the perfect place to while away some time. Kaikoura sits spectacularly at the northern end of the Southern Alps. Sandwiched between soaring peaks and incredibly rich ocean waters, this old fishing town has been given new life by visitors intent on seeing its vivid natural beauty.

At the northern end of the Island sits majestic Marlborough Sound, the placid gateway to the North Island. Ferries chug in and out of Picton, carrying passengers to and from the cosmopolitan capital of Wellington. Lush forests line the quiet waterways and boats bob in the calm water, while seals sleep in the grass soaking up the New Zealand sun.

Our four weeks on the South Island has been incredible. We have driven nearly 4,000 kilometers (on the left side of the road, no less), and have seen more natural beauty than we could have imagined. Immense mountain peaks, crystal clear trout streams, pristine beaches, funky towns, lush vineyards, and rugged coastline – the South Island has it all. The trip is almost over, but there is still some fun to be had. Stay tuned for our adventures on the North Island.

Enjoy the Marlborough Photo Gallery.

Enjoy the Marlborough Seal Videos:
Thundering Waves.
Pups Playing with Dad.

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