Western Southland

Summer days in Western Southland stretch into endless twilights, tinged by magenta and gold sunsets that last, quite literally, for hours.
Family fun at Riverton

You will find the area of Western Southland located along the Southern Scenic Route between Invercargill and Te Anau. Allow at least a day to travel through this majestic area where summer days stretch into endless twilights, tinged by stunning sunsets that last, quite literally, for hours. The 'Riviera of the South' that is the popular seaside village of Riverton, hosts a variety of relics from the past (both Maori and European whalers), easy access to recreation and great place to unwind. Further along the road to Fiordland, Tuatapere boasts a frontier spirit, and is the launch pad to accessing the variety of natural environments that surround it.

Tuatapere Hump Ridge Track

The 62km Tuatapere Hump Ridge Track takes hikers through diverse and stunning scenery, from subalpine wilderness to sea-level views. Furnished with comfortable lodges to rest the weary, the track provides sweeping 360’ views of Southern Alps and coast while up on the Hump Ridge.

Hiking the Hump Ridge Track

Jet Boating

Contemplate the scenic Lake Hauroko, New Zealand’s deepest lake, with a cruise then get an adrenaline rush with one of the jet boat operators on the Wairaurahiri River – the steepest river in New Zealand to be navigated by commercial jet boat operators.

Jet Boat lake to coast in Western Southland

Gemstone Beach

Gemstone Beach is known for its constant state of change from sand to stones with the storms and tides. Semi-precious gems such as garnet, jasper, quartz and nephrite can often be found on the beach.

Colac Bay

For surfers, food lovers, history buffs or those simply contemplating the power of the great Southern Ocean, Colac Bay and its surrounds offer a great place to slow down and take a break.

The gateway to Fiordland National Park

At nearby Clifden, a quick walk into the Dean Forest leads to a 1000-year-old Totara tree. Then you can take your pick of Lakes Hauroko or Monowai, both bordering Fiordland National Park, and both offering great fishing, as well as wonderful bush walks. Tuatapere is an ideal base for many wilderness activities such as tramping, walking, fishing, whitebaiting, hunting, caving and jet boating.

What's on

Check out our Southland events calendar and find out what is coming up so you can plan your trip south.

What's On


Southland gives visitors an unrivalled opportunity to get up close and personal with a wide range of wildlife and experience New Zealand at its natural best.

Southland is abundant with wildlife

The Outdoors

Sandy beaches, abundant forests, mountainous plains and leisurely rivers give travellers a new adventure to pursue around every corner.

Northern Southland has many mountain bike trails
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Warm southern country hospitality, great traditional cooking fare, comfortable and cosy accommodation, isolation and location – that’s the magic of the Waiau Hotel.

Located in Southland's Blackmount district in the picturesque village of Monowai. This lovely old camp was historically built for the Monowai Power Station.

Tucked away in the most south westerly corner of New Zealand, with nothing but coastline to the south and Fiordland to the west, Last Light Lodge is the last backpackers to see the light of the day...

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Borland Lodge is situated at the gateway to Fiordland National Park in southern New Zealand - a World Heritage area.

Explore the limestone caves and view the stalactites and glow worms within this rare Southland cave system.

The Otautau Art Gallery is based in an old Methodist church in Otautau, South Island, New Zealand.

Experience the wonders of Western Southland and Mt Linton Station in March with four different mountain bike courses from the ‘Loch’ fun ride suitable recreational riders to the 40km ‘Rock Hut Round Up’ for the seriou

The low cost green fees make this a must play holiday destination course. You won’t be disappointed.

McCrackens Rest is a lookout and rest area on the Southern Scenic Route overlooking Te Wae Wae Bay.

The Thornbury Vintage Tractor and Implement Club inc is the oldest vintage tractor club in New Zealand as it was formed over 50 years ago by the foresight of three gentlemen, following the recovery and subsequent rest

Southern Lakes Helicopters is a locally owned and operated company based in Te Anau, on the edge of the magnificent Fiordland National Park, New Zealand, offering an extensive range of commercial and charter helicopte

Long Hilly (Round Hill) Walking Track 2hours 15 min return

The Rakatu Wetlands are located in the Waiau River valley along the Southern Scenic Route, between Tuatapere and Manapouri.