Top activities in Picton
Top Picton landmarks
Top Picton landmarks tickets
Top Picton categories
Explore Picton and beyond
Nearby Picton tours
Popular tours in South Island
People also visited
Travelers journeying overland to or from the North Island pass through Picton, a small town at the top of the South Island. But there’s more to Picton than its status as a transit hub: travelers who hang around before or after their ferry find a pretty town surrounded by the clear waters and forest-covered hills of the Marlborough Sounds. There are many things to do in Picton and its surrounding area, especially when the weather’s fine: swim, take a kayaking tour around Queen Charlotte Sound, cruise, or embark on a long-distance hike. Stay a while in Picton and see for yourself.
Picton is a year-round destination as it’s the South Island departure and entry point for ferries across the Cook Strait. However, summer (December–February) is the best time to visit to enjoy the town and the surroundings in their own right rather than as a transit hub. Swimming, kayaking, hiking, and scenic cruises from Picton allow visitors to enjoy the beauty of the Marlborough Sounds.
Picton is a small town and can be navigated on foot. Many travelers have their own vehicle, which is generally necessary in the South Island, but to travel further afield without one, an infrequent local bus plies the route between Picton and Blenheim a couple of times per week, and the Marlborough Flyer vintage steam train takes a scenic route to Blenheim intermittently.
If you want to hang around the Picton area for a few days, opt for a nearby campsite rather than stay in a bland transit motel. Momorangi Bay, 10 miles (15 kilometers) west of Picton on the Queen Charlotte Drive, has a pretty Department of Conservation-run campsite with views of Queen Charlotte Sound.
Yes, Picton is worth visiting. Many people pass through Picton on the way to or from the ferry across the Cook Strait between the North and South Islands, but it’s worth visiting regardless of whether you’re taking the ferry....More
Picton and Blenheim offer different experiences. If you’re catching a ferry to Wellington, Picton is a convenient place to stay. Picton is a good base for exploring the Marlborough Sounds. Blenheim is a larger town surrounded by wineries, making it a top foodie destination....More
Picton is best known as the South Island harbor for ferries crossing the Cook Strait to or from Wellington. It’s also known as the largest town in the Marlborough Sounds region....More
When it’s raining in Picton, hang out in a cafe or bar while watching the ferries dock, browse the shops and boutiques, or check out the museums. There’s the Edwin Fox Museum, where a preserved 19th-century merchant ship sits, and the smaller Picton Heritage and Whaling Museum....More
Yes, parts of Picton are suitable for swimming. Head to Shelley Beach, east of the Picton Foreshore, to find a safe swimming area marked off from boat traffic....More
When the weather’s fine, kids can enjoy playing at the Picton Memorial Park Playground at the foreshore, where there are many rides and a mock pirate ship. Next door is the Round ‘a’ Mini Golf course, with paid entry. The Edwin Fox Museum can also be fun for kids, who can step on board a preserved 19th-century merchant ship....More
Number of Attractions
Number of Tours
Number of Reviews