Premium Tours in Picton
With sheltered glistening waters, often soothing weather and a surrounding region of vineyards, Picton is a destination that deserves a bit of luxury. When you’re not relaxing in Picton’s luxury hotels, resorts and B&Bs, set sail on the gorgeous Marlborough Sounds cruising in and out of inlets and coves. Experience them from above or remain firmly on land with a glass of Marlborough wine in hand on one of the premium wine tours. We go through some stunning options for a special trip in this list of luxury activities in Picton.
And for more luxury tours in Picton, as well as travel advice, be sure to browse The Luxury Guide to Picton.
1. Hike the Queen Charlotte Track
Starting with one of New Zealand’s premium hiking trails, the Queen Charlotte Track is a multi-day walk without having to give up comforts associated with spending time in the wilderness. Stay in upscale lodges nestled in picturesque bays between days of hiking over forested hills, winding through lush forest and along wonderful coves and inlets. While we offer advice on how to organise your trip independently in The Ultimate Guide to the Queen Charlotte Track, a range of classic to all-inclusive packages can be organised with Natural Encounters Walks.
Location: Between Ship Cove and Anakiwa. Access to Ship Cove is via water taxi, while Anakiwa is approximately 23km (14 miles) from Picton by road.
2. Enjoy a Private Marlborough Region Wine Tour
Explore the famous wine region of Marlborough on one of the superb wine tours from Picton. While we list various tour companies in the 9 Great Winery Tours in New Zealand, a more premium experience awaits with Hop n Grape Wine Tours Marlborough. Their full-day private winery tour allows you to curate your ideal itinerary with their winemaker or let them surprise you! Go behind the scenes of Marlborough’s wineries, soak up the scenery of the Awatere Valley, focus on boutique, organic or fine wine – it’s up to you.
Location: Free pick-ups available from Picton accommodations.
3. Do a Seafood Cruise in the Queen Charlotte Sound
Incorporate the three famous aspects of Marlborough: the coastal scenery, wine and green-lipped mussels, on a seafood cruise with the Marlborough Tour Company. Travel by luxury catamaran to a salmon and mussel farm where you’ll indulge in fresh samples of seafood paired with Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc. There’s also plenty of photo opportunities when cruising through the sheltered waters of the Queen Charlotte Sound, as well as a chance to see seals, dolphins and penguins.
Location: 2 Wellington Street, Picton town.
4. Take to the Skies in a Scenic Flight Over Marlborough
For an alternative perspective of the breathtaking coastal landscape, take to the skies on a scenic flight. See an intricate network of bays, inlets and waterways on a helicopter flight with Coast to Coast Helicopters or a fixed-wing flight with Pelorus Air. Both operators offer a range of air tours with flight times to suit most itineraries. For instance, tour the Marlborough wineries in style on the Heli Wine Tour with Coast to Coast Helicopters or enjoy a remote beach landing on the Water, Wine and Wilderness tour with Pelorus Air!
Location: Coast to Coast Helicopters and Pelorus Air – Picton Airport, Koromiko, approximately 9km (6 miles) from Picton. Pick-ups are available from Picton accommodation if needed.
5. Indulge in a Relaxing Spa Treatment
Picton often marks the midway point for travellers exploring both the North and South Islands, so it’s a good time to hit the pause button and indulge in a spa treatment. In town, you have Little Oasis, offering massages, facials and an infrared sauna – all in a soothing environment with hot towels, blissful sounds, candles and aromas. In the Marlborough Sounds, guests and visitors to the Bay of Many Coves are treated to their on-site Miritu Day Spa, who specialise in New Zealand-sourced botanicals and essential oils.
Location: Little Oasis – 53 Durham Street, Picton town. Bay of Many Coves – Bay of Many Coves, Queen Charlotte Sound, accessible by water taxi.
6. Sail the Marlborough Sounds
If all the ways we’ve suggested to explore the Marlborough Sounds wasn’t enough, then get onboard a luxury sailing yacht to cruise the sounds in style. Cruising the less-visited Kenepuru and Pelorus Sounds, Sounds by Sail offers private charters, three-hour tours and luxury overnight excursions in their 32ft Beneteau yacht. For a more traditional sail, choose Steadfast, a 58ft traditionally built gaff cutter. As well as morning sails from Picton, they provide overnight sails in the Queen Charlotte Sound and cruises to French Pass and D’Urville Island.
Location: Sounds by Sail – Pick-ups available from selected accommodations in the Kenepuru Sound, such as The Portage, approximately 51km (32 miles) from Picton town. Steadfast – Picton Wharf.
7. Tee Off at Picton’s Golf Courses
Like, well, anywhere in New Zealand, Picton is a glorious place to swing a club. The Rarangi Golf Club is the closest 18-hole course, nestled between the shores of Cloudy Bay and the hills of Mt Robertson. Alternatively, you have the nine-hole Picton Golf Club among exotic trees and bush-clad hills. See how the courses compare in the 21 Best Golf Courses in New Zealand.
Location: Rarangi Golf Club – 217 Rarangi Beach Road, approximately 27km (17 miles) from Picton. Picton Golf Club – State Highway One, Mt Pleasant, approximately 6km (4 miles) from Picton.
8. Be Treated to Fine Dining
In the heart of New Zealand’s largest wine region and seafood mecca, Picton offers some special dining experiences. When it comes to fine dining, our first thought is the Bay of Many Coves in the Queen Charlotte Sound. Foredeck is their most premium restaurant where their wine-matched degustation menu is a highlight. Alternatively, the restaurant of the boutique Escape to Picton hotel is another upscale dining staple, conveniently located in town. They offer well-presented plates of contemporary French and New Zealand cuisine, use locally-sourced fresh produce, and do high tea on weekends. For more restaurant recommendations, check out The Foodie Guide to Picton.
Location: Bay of Many Coves – Bay of Many Coves, Queen Charlotte Sound, accessible by water taxi. Escape to Picton – 33 Wellington Street, Picton town.