Rugged coastline, majestic waterfalls and empty roads. Need I say more?
With places like Milford Sound, Queenstown and Tekapo on tourist’s radar during their visit to New Zealand, the Catlins seems to have gotten pushed down to the bottom of most people’s travel itineraries, if even making an appearance on there at all.
The Catlins is one of those off the beaten track places that is so “off-track” the majority of the area doesn’t even have paved roads! But the beauty of this region is that whether you choose to explore inland our coastal–it will feel as if you are one of the first people to ever discover it and 9 times out of 10, you won’t have to share the views with anyone but your own travel companions!
Still not sold that the Catlins would be worth swapping in for a visit to the famous Queenstown or Tekapo? Think again…..
1. Nugget Point:
These cute little nuggets that are perfectly in line with the Nugget Point Lighthouse are just so stinkin’ perfect! And even on a cloudy day, they seem to glisten among the crashing waves of the Pacific Ocean.
The walk to reach the ultimate viewpoint of these nuggets is about 15 minutes and I would bet a million bucks on the fact that this will definitely make the top of your list of scenic places you will see in New Zealand.
2. Pūrākaunui Falls:
I personally am a sucker for waterfalls (because who isn’t?!) and this one is quite special. While it’s size is not of the grandeur of other waterfalls I have seen, this particular casading waterfall makes for some really pretty photos and really special memories.
Plus, it’s an easy waterfall to squeeze in to the road trip through the Catlins as it is under a 10 minute walk to reach. But if you’re anything like me–you’ll be running to it the entire time.
3. Tunnel Beach:
Okay, this isn’t technically in the Catlins, but is right on the outskirts and is a place that will be passed en-route.
A quick walk through scenic farmland will bring you to the dramatic coastline of Tunnel Beach! There is a constant mist from the violent crashing of the never-ending waves and an atmosphere that really makes you feel small in comparison to these humongous rocks!
And Tunnel Beach didn’t receive it’s name for nothing–there is an actual tunnel you have to walk down to get to the beach!
It’s a place that you could easily spend the whole day soaking in the surroundings. And nothing like watching crashing waves to make you contemplate the bigger things in life.