Southland

Great Walking

Stewart Island Bathing Beach
BackpackerGuide.NZ
Walking on Stewart Island Bathing Beach

In Southland, there is an abundance of walking trails for the hiking inclined traveler, be it short, day or multi-day walks. All these walks let you sample the region's rich natural heritage, exploring mountains, forests, lakes, rivers, sandy beaches and rocky shorelines. So grab your hiking boots and get ready to explore!

We are lucky to live in an area that boost 5 Great Walks! One of these Great Walks is the Rakiura Track, suited for anyone with moderate fitness, it takes you through native forest, across sandy beaches all while listing to birdsong. The Kepler Track is a wilderness adventure with its vast tussock-covered ridgelines and spectacular alpine vistas contrast with peaceful lakeside and valley forest views. Or experience "the finest walk in the world" as you retrace the steps of early explorers on the world-renowned Milford Track. Capture the stunning panoramas from Mackinnon Pass across ancient valleys carved by glaciers and wander through lush rainforests. The Routeburn Track could be the ultimate alpine adventure; weaving through meadows and reflective tarns, with amazing views over mountain ranges and valleys. The Hump Ridge Track in Tuatapere is set to be New Zealand's next Great Walk, it's currently a three day loop walk taking you along the coast of Western Southland and up to the sub-alpine zone of the Hump Ridge. The track will be upgraded to a three night experience over the next few years and will open as a great Walk in 2022.

From hiking along the beach on Stewart Island, to hiking towards the majestic Milford Sound, the choice is yours.

If you want to hike a trail but don't feel up to taken on a Great Walk just yet, you're in luck. Southland has a great variety of Short Walks to choose from. These trails are easily accessible walking tracks take take you through the region's natural heritage of mountains, forests, lakes, rives, sandy beaches and rugged coastlines. some of these are perfect for the whole family! And some trails also allow dog access so your four legged family members can come along on your outdoor adventures.