Cruises

Marlborough Sounds - Cruises – Private: (from $800)

The Marlborough Sounds are a network of submerged valleys and waterways, numerous Islands and tranquil sheltered bays, native bush-clad hills and almost 1500 km of deep-water coastline to explore, it is a cruising paradise.

Private charters are a great way to quickly get out into the Sounds allowing you time to explore the many hidden coves and waterways. With a local knowledgeable crew you will get to experience all that this fantastic area has to offer and learn a little of its history.

There is an abundance of marine and bird life along with stunning scenery with native bush running down to the waters edge and virtually no one else about.   Whether you wish to cruise, moor, swim, fish or simply sit back relax and explore this beautiful area this will be a highlight of your time in the Marlborough Region.  With a skilled Chef on board a stunning lunch will add to your day. With options of half or full day experiences we can customise to your requirements.

  • Katabatic Charters (Motor Boat, 14m), half day, full day, sightseeing, fishing, diving or a combination.  For those looking for a little more exercise then perhaps walking a section of The Queen Charlotte Track and cruising the Marlborough Sounds with lunch is the answer – there are many options available so let us help create your perfect day.

 

 

Combination Helicopter/Cruise/Fishing (POA)

  • Helicopter sightseeing flight over the Marlborough Sounds landing at Ship Cove (Captain Cooks first interaction with Maori in 1770 took place here) enjoy a picnic lunch at a secluded location and then return by water taxi stopping at the predator free Motuara Island Native Bird Sanctuary, where you will be guided by a conservationist, who will provide details on the native NZ birds, penguins, flora on the island and details on the abundant marine life that inhabit the waterways of the area such as Dolphins which you are likely to see on your return to Picton, Fur Seals, Gannets and other sea birds.
  • Departing from the gardens of the Lodge your luxury helicopter sightseeing tour of the magnificent Marlborough Sounds will take you over the many waters and rugged native bush clad hills that run down to the water’s edge. This remote area at the top of the South Island is predominantly uninhabited and its ever changing and rugged landscape make it quite spectacular. Landing on D’Urville Island (discovered in 1827 by French explorer which it is named after it is home to just 52 residents on its 150 sq klm expanse). This outer island of the Marlborough Sounds is where you get to try your luck at catching some of the local blue cod, we give a 99% chance of success of doing so and will not doubt have you reeling them in after just a few minutes! You will then be hosted to a casual BBQ lunch, which will include your freshly caught Blue Cod, seasonal salads and of course a glass of Marlborough wine. There will be time to relax and take in this remote beautiful location prior to boarding your helicopter. The return flight will take you over waterways, the Richmond Ranges and into the Wairau plans where you will see the extent of New Zealand’s largest wine growing region of NZ as you fly over the vast expanse of vineyards before landing back in the secluded gardens of the Marlborough Lodge

 

Marlborough Sounds Shared Cruises: (from $160)

The Marlborough Sounds is made up of four distinctively different Sounds – Queen Charlotte, Kenepuru, Pelorus, and Mahau – the winding waterways and sheltered bays and the abundance of marine life and native flora make for great cruising whichever way you choose

  • Half day Dolphin watching where there is a 90% chance of seeing the playful Hectors, Bottlenose or Dusky Dolphins and then a walking tour of Motuara Island, a predator free native bird sanctuary.
  • Half day cruise in morning or afternoon, with tasting of seafood from the region, the green lipped mussels which are only found and farmed in the Marlborough Sounds and this is paired with a taste of the famous Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc
  • Half day cruise of the Marlborough Sounds and take in the magnificent scenery plus a wine tour in the morning where you will visit 2-3 wineries to experience some of the exceptional wines of the region.
  • Mail boat: Come along on the Mail Boat Cruise and share the excitement of Mail Day as the skipper delivers the New Zealand Rural post bags, groceries and freight to the residents that call the Queen Charlotte Sound waterways home
  • Water taxis (rented by hour)

 

The possibilities are endless so if you have a specific request let us know and we will make it happen

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What our customers say

It was a typically crisp Autumn evening so we started with a glass of bubbles and delicious canapés beside the huge outdoor fire. We could just as easily have settled into the comfy sofas inside the chapel, now transformed into a cosy space for pre-dinner drinks, wine tastings, and browsing a range of beautiful NZ-made gifts. This was not our first visit to The Marlborough Lodge, but the first since the change of guard the kitchen. The menu changes daily and is a showcase of local produce with a touch of European flair. Portions are generous and our plates were bare when they returned to the kitchen. That says it all. The Lodge effortlessly combines elegance with comfort and under Karen's stewardship the staff are efficient and friendly and knowledgeable too. We locals are lucky to have a place of this calibre on our doorstep, visitors who stay here are just lucky.

Donna M

Wonderful Surprise. My husband booked us here as a treat whilst traveling around the area. It was a truly lovely stay. We wish we booked longer! The staff is brilliant and friendly - always smiling and quick to offer anything we might have needed. The property - WOW! It is incredibly well cared for and decorated to be current whilst maintaining the integrity and the history of the building (a challenge few people get spot on - they do!) . We will surely be back - hopefully when it is warmer so we can take advantage of the pool and more outdoor activities. Still well worth the stay in the offseason - the wineries are still open in June!

Ellie Z

Extraordinary luxury hotel. This hotel simply could not be improved upon! The building is lovely with an effortlessly elegant decor. We had a large suite with a second room for our son, separated by a huge bathroom. The room was perfect, with just the right amount of flair and panache without feeling overdone. Our bed was extremely comfortable and the linens were fantastic. The whole property has several wrap around porches, which are great for sitting outside and taking in the stunning views of the property, including a small vineyard. The setting is so serene — you are minutes from the local wineries and restaurants but you feel completely away from everything. We went on a tour with the gardener, who showed us the chickens (fresh eggs for breakfast every day!) and beautiful stream and plants. There are lots of citrus trees and gardens on the grounds. In the evenings, we enjoyed canapés and wine in a small chapel on the property, next to a roaring fire. And the food was delicious throughout! We enjoyed our evening dinners immensely and also had very tasty breakfasts, including local preserves and fresh juice. The staff was super friendly and made all of us, including our 8-year old son, feel so welcome. The manager was wonderful and made sure we all felt special. I would highly recommend this location.

CK107 – San Francisco

Amazing! The Marlborough Lodge is just amazing! Wonderful room with a perfect bedding. Huge bathroom. Refined decoration. The convent, separate from the the main premise, is a unique place to have an appetitive before the diner. Very nice and professional staff. Interesting wine list. A place to be in the Marlborough Region.

FM – Belgium