Southwest New Zealand (Te Wahipounamu)

Southwest New Zealand (Te Wahipounamu), photo by David Briody
Southwest New Zealand (Te Wahipounamu) (photo by David Briody)
 

The southwest side of the South Island (Te Wahipounamu) includes some of New Zealand’s most spectacular scenery.

The entire region is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Major features include Aoraki (Mt Cook), the Franz Josef & Fox glaciers, Fiordland National Park, and Westland National Park.

The best base camp for most of the region is a small collection of communities known as Haast.

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Overall Atmosphere: Natural
A Natural Atmosphere includes a diverse range of destinations with outdoor-oriented features, including both water-based (beaches, rivers, lakes, etc) and land-based (mountains, forests, deserts, etc). It also includes specific outdoor activities, ranging from water adventuring (eg, kayaking, sailing) to land adventuring (eg, hiking, biking).

Natural Interests tend to be:
(a) outdoors-oriented, and therefore more dependent on weather conditions
(b) less easily accessible and more physically demanding than other destination categories.

In some cases (eg, rafting and climbing), this includes a significantly increased degree of adventure (or danger, depending on one's viewpoint).
Featuring mainly outdoors-oriented natural attractions.
 

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Heartland World Heritage Hotel

Just a 5-minute drive from the township of Haast, Heartland World Heritage Hotel is located in the region of South Westland, between the West Coast of New Zealand and the southern lakes districts. Guests enjoy free WiFi. Average score from 6 guest reviews: 0.0/10.

$97 - $170

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Haast River Top 10 Holiday Park

Haast River Top 10 Holiday Park offers a guest lounge, a shared kitchen and BBQ facilities. All accommodation features a refrigerator and tea/coffee making facilities. Guests enjoy free on-site parking and 1GB of free WiFi accessed on up to 5... Average score from 6 guest reviews: 0.0/10.

$87

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Hannahs Homestead

Located a 15-minute drive from Haast, Hannahs Homestead offers beachfront accommodation. The 3-bedroom holiday home offers sea views. WiFi is available for an additional charge. Average score from 14 guest reviews: 0.0/10.

$103

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ASURE Aspiring Court Motel

Set amongst peaceful bushland, ASURE Aspiring Court Motel is perfectly positioned to explore the town of Haast. Guests can relax in comfortable accommodation featuring a flat-screen TV with cable channels. Average score from 7 guest reviews: 0.0/10.

$97

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Bay Road Motels

Located along the coast, a 10-minute drive from Haast, Bay Road Motels is surrounded by nature. All apartments are fully equipped and come with kitchen and a lounge with sofa and TV. WiFi is available for an additional charge. Average score from 12 guest reviews: 0.0/10.

$83

BOOK THIS HOTEL NOW
See all hotels in Southwest New Zealand (Te Wahipounamu).
Hotel NameRooms FromGuest Rating
Bay Road Motels

Bay Road Motels

Located along the coast, a 10-minute drive from Haast, Bay Road Motels is surrounded by nature. All apartments are fully equipped and come with kitchen and a lounge with sofa and TV. WiFi is available for an additional charge. Average score from 12 guest reviews: 0.0/10.

$83

$83-
Haast River Top 10 Holiday Park

Haast River Top 10 Holiday Park

Haast River Top 10 Holiday Park offers a guest lounge, a shared kitchen and BBQ facilities. All accommodation features a refrigerator and tea/coffee making facilities. Guests enjoy free on-site parking and 1GB of free WiFi accessed on up to 5... Average score from 6 guest reviews: 0.0/10.

$87

$87-
Heartland World Heritage Hotel

Heartland World Heritage Hotel

Just a 5-minute drive from the township of Haast, Heartland World Heritage Hotel is located in the region of South Westland, between the West Coast of New Zealand and the southern lakes districts. Guests enjoy free WiFi. Average score from 6 guest reviews: 0.0/10.

$97 - $170

$97-
ASURE Aspiring Court Motel

ASURE Aspiring Court Motel

Set amongst peaceful bushland, ASURE Aspiring Court Motel is perfectly positioned to explore the town of Haast. Guests can relax in comfortable accommodation featuring a flat-screen TV with cable channels. Average score from 7 guest reviews: 0.0/10.

$97

$97-
Hannahs Homestead

Hannahs Homestead

Located a 15-minute drive from Haast, Hannahs Homestead offers beachfront accommodation. The 3-bedroom holiday home offers sea views. WiFi is available for an additional charge. Average score from 14 guest reviews: 0.0/10.

$103

$103-

Highlights:

Click highlighted activity to see details.
Natural
Unusual Local Feature

Easy-Access Glaciers

New Zealand’s largest glaciers are located in this region. The most famous is Franz Josef Glacier. This is perhaps the most accessible glacier in the southern hemisphere. While it was once possible to drive right up to the terminal face, the glacier is receding, so some walking is now involved.

Another options is Fox Glacier. Although not quite as spectacular as the Franz Josef Glacier, it is considerably less crowded.
Alpine Mountains
The entire region of parks in the area contain some of New Zealand’s tallest and most iconic alpine mountains. Mount Cook is the most famous, and offers everything from climbing to skiing as activities. Mount Aspiring is another well-known climbing mountain.

Visitors interested in a more relaxing perspective of the mountains can stay at Lake Matheson, where the mountains are reflected in a mirror calm lake.
Hiking and Trekking
The area has many trails among its many mountains and valleys, including some that go to the top of several peaks and many that are multi-day expeditions. Easier hikes around the central town of Haast include:

Dune Lake Walk. An easy 30 minute walk.

Hapuka Estuary Walk. An easy 20 minute walk. This rail offers several different environments to explore, including 800 year old Rimu trees and excellent bird watching.

Ship Creek Tauparikaka Walks. An easy 20 minute walk to see some of the country's tallest trees.

Smoothwater Bay Track. A moderate 2 to 3 hour walk.
Also of Interest:
Natural
Kayaking and Canoeing
Fishing
Scenic Waterways
Waterfalls
Rafting
Forests
Climbing

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