Our Region

Blenheim, Renwick and Wairau

Blenheim in Marlborough, New Zealand

Marlborough's main town, Blenheim, has great cafes, galleries and shops wrapped up within the picturesque Taylor and Opawa rivers, a short distance to the region's world famous wineries.

There's an abundance of vineyards and cellar doors surrounding Blenheim, so explore the stunning Wairau Valley and discover why the world is in love with Marlborough wine.

Central Blenheim is best explored by foot, with an abundance of great cafes, restaurants shops and galleries, along with popular walkways along the Taylor River Reserve.

Walk a little further afield to get to Pollard Park, a beautiful botanical garden, playground, golf course and exercise trail.

The Marlborough Farmers’ Market is held at the A&P Showgrounds every Sunday morning and the Marlborough Artisan Market is on in town on Saturdays.

A short drive or bike ride will take you to the world-class Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre, where World War One history comes to life thanks to the talents of the team behind The Lord of the Rings.

The centre’s Knights of the Sky exhibition features The Hobbit director Sir Peter Jackson’s personal collection of WW1 aircraft and memorabilia. This story of aviation in the Great War is brought to life in sensational sets created by the internationally acclaimed talent of WingNut Films and Weta Workshop.

Captivating scenes depict the aircraft in context, sometimes recreating an incident that actually happened in the war. Rare memorabilia is on display, worthy of any national collection and ranges from beautifully crafted ‘trench art’ through to personal items belonging to the famous Red Baron.

Or head to the historic Brayshaw Park and Marlborough Museum, where exhibitions include Te Pokohiwi - The Wairau Bar 1250 AD, a land mark exhibition of the Wairau Bar archaeology site, place of the earliest known graves in the country and key to understanding daily life in the 13th century.

Marlborough’s world famous wine industry is on Blenheim’s back doorstep in the Wairau Valley, so make sure you taste its sublime wines amid the vines that grew them.

Head to nearby cellar doors for a taste of Marlborough’s flagship sauvignon blanc, along with award winning aromatics, pinot noir and sparkling wine.

Lunch at a vineyard restaurant to try some amazing local cuisine, including garlic, asparagus, olive oil and cherries grown in the Wairau Valley, and King (Chinook) salmon, oysters and Greenshell mussels from the Marlborough Sounds.

The Wairau Valley is also home to rich heritage and ecology, and a great way to learn more about both is on a kayak trip on the Wairau Lagoons, where Royal Spoonbill, shag, bartailed godwit, herons and terns can be spotted. Learn some of the history of Maori here, and of whalers and pioneering settlers.

Kayak the Wairau Lagoons

Activities

Kayak down the Wairau River, to the Wairau Boulder Bank, exploring the habitat of amazing birdlife with Driftwood Eco Tours.

Kayak the Wairau Lagoons

Blenheim i-SITE Visitor Information Centre

Hire bikes

Activities

Get out and experience Marlborough’s vines or hills by bike

Hire bikes

Blenheim i-SITE Visitor Information Centre

Hit the snow

Activities

Head to Rainbow Ski Field for great skiing and boarding, for the whole family. Just 90 minutes drive from Blenheim.

Hit the snow

Rainbow Ski Area

Linger at cellar doors

Wine & Food

Savour Marlborough pinot noir in front of a toasty fire, or enjoy a lunch made from premium local ingredients at a vineyard restaurant.

Linger at cellar doors

Blenheim i-SITE Visitor Information Centre

Richmond Range

Activities

Hike or mountain bike through native bush to a DOC hut on the Richmond Range, then up through alpine flora to one of its beautiful peaks.

Richmond Range

Blenheim i-SITE Visitor Information Centre

Saint Clair Vineyard Half Marathon

Events

Put on your running shoes for the Saint Clair Vineyard Half Marathon in May, a stunning run through private vineyards.

Saint Clair Vineyard Half Marathon

Related Guide:

Biking
Accommodation

Biking

Mountain bike Marlborough’s epic high country trails and coastal ridges, road bike undulating routes at the edge of the sea, tour on long flat runs through vine-clad valleys or take the whole family biking along one of the region’s many rivers.

Marlborough boasts brilliant weather, stunning scenery and an abundance of acclaimed mountain and road trails, including a Great Ride and three Trails along the New Zealand Cycle Trail, Nga Haerenga.

This pedaller’s paradise has thrilling adventure, low key rides, and everything in-between.

Read our guide

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