Picton, New Zealand | Cruise port of call | CruiseBe
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Picton, New Zealand

Picton is a small town at the top of the South Island of New Zealand that has more visitor facilities than might be expected because it's the South Island start of State Highway 1 (SH1) when the Cook Strait inter-island ferries dock. For many, it's the gateway to Marlborough and Nelson Bays.

It also serves as a convenient hub for exploring the beautiful Marlborough Sounds. Nearby activities include sailing, SCUBA diving to the wreck of the Soviet passenger cruise ship Mikhail Lermontov, fishing, biking, and hiking.

In 1962, the New Zealand Railways' chose Picton as the South Island terminal for its new Cook Strait road and rail ferry service, now known as the Interislander. Ferry GMV Aramoana provided the first roll-on-roll-off ferry service between two islands, dramatically cutting travel times between the two islands and proving extremely popular. By 1976, Aramoana has been joined... Read more

Picton, New Zealand

Destination:

Picton is a small town at the top of the South Island of New Zealand that has more visitor facilities than might be expected because it's the South Island start of State Highway 1 (SH1) when the Cook Strait inter-island ferries dock. For many, it's the gateway to Marlborough and Nelson Bays.

It also serves as a convenient hub for exploring the beautiful Marlborough Sounds. Nearby activities include sailing, SCUBA diving to the wreck of the Soviet passenger cruise ship Mikhail Lermontov, fishing, biking, and hiking.

In 1962, the New Zealand Railways' chose Picton as the South Island terminal for its new Cook Strait road and rail ferry service, now known as the Interislander. Ferry GMV Aramoana provided the first roll-on-roll-off ferry service between two islands, dramatically cutting travel times between the two islands and proving extremely popular. By 1976, Aramoana has been joined on the route by three other ferries and together they had effectively wiped out their inter-island competitors, including the long-standing 'Steamer Express' overnight ferry between Wellington and Lyttelton.

  • Picton i-SITE (The tourist information center), The Foreshore (The western end of the foreshore on State Highway 1 opposite the train station, south of the Interlsland terminal), ☎ +64 3 520-3113, fax: +64 3 573-5021, e-mail: picton@i-SITE.org.

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Picton, New Zealand: Port Information


Cruise ships up to 245 m long berth at Waitohi Wharf alongside the Cook Strait ferries, while larger cruise ships berth at Waimahara Wharf on adjacent Shakespeare Bay and passengers are shuttled from the wharf to the i-Site Information center in central Picton.

One reason cruise ships call on Picton is for the sail in/out through the Queen Charlotte Sound. Very picturesque, so make sure you get a good viewing position.

Get around Picton, New Zealand


Picton has no local bus service. The "one-horse" town center is easily explored on foot. If you need to get around and don't feel like driving, take a taxi. Queen Charlotte Sound is best explored by boat.
  • Gateway Taxis, ☎ +64 3 573-7662.
  • Arrow Water Taxis, Town Wharves, Waterfront, ☎ +64 3 573-8229, +64 27 444 4689, fax: +64 3 573-8266, e-mail: info@arrowwatertaxis.co.nz.
  • Beachcomber (The mail boat), The Waterfront, ☎ +64 3 573-6175, fax: +64 3 573-6176, e-mail: office@mailboat.co.nz.
  • Cougar Line, The Waterfront, ☎ +64 3 573-7925, fax: +64 3 573-7926, e-mail: cougarline@xtra.co.nz.
  • Dolphin Watch Ecotours, Dunbar Wharf, Picton Foreshore, ☎ +64 3 573-8040, fax: +64 3 573-7906, e-mail: info@naturetours.co.nz.
  • Endeavour Express, Picton Foreshore, ☎ +64 3 573-5456, fax: +64 3 573-5434, e-mail: help@boatrides.co.nz.
  • Overture Luxury Charters, Waikawa marina, Picton, ☎ +64 3 573-5220, fax: +64 3 573-5739, e-mail: overture.charters@xtra.co.nz.
  • Picton Water Taxis, London Quay, ☎ +64 3 573-7853, +64 27 551 1284, e-mail: picton.water.taxis@xtra.co.nz.
  • Waka Whenua Tours, ☎ +64 3 573-7877, fax: +64 3 573-7877, e-mail: wakawhenuatours@clear.net.nz. Local Sightseeing, historical, cultural and wine tours as well as door to door shuttle services.

What to see in Picton, New Zealand


  • The Marlborough Sounds
  • The Edwin Fox, Picton Foreshore (100 m from the Rail Ferry Terminal), ☎ +64 3 573-6868, e-mail: edwinfoxsoc@xtra.co.nz. Daily 09:00–17:00. Built in 1853, the Edwin Fox is the 9th oldest ship in the world and is in the process of being restored.
  • Picton Community Museum, London Quay, ☎ +64 3 573-8283. Daily 10:00-16:00.
  • The Waterfront

What to do in Picton, New Zealand


  • Walk to the Snout. Between Picton and Waikawa Bay is a peninsula covered in a mixture of native and exotic bush. Tracks range from a few minutes to 3.5h. Cross the bridge at the eastern end of the Picton foreshore. The tracks begin at the foot of the hill. The Marlborough District Council produces a map available from the tourist information center.
  • Drive to Karaka Point (7km and 15min from town; take first Waikawa Rd and then Beach Rd). 24hrs. Waikawa Bay is a suburb of Picton where the majority of the region's private yachts and power boats are moored. A 10min walk begins at the car park and passes the site of a Maori pa (fortified village) before a lookout and stony beach.
  • Marlborough Sounds Adventure Company, London Quay, ☎ +64 3 573-6078, toll-free: 0800 283 283, 1800 007 083 (from Australia), fax: +64 3 573 8827, e-mail: adventure@marlboroughsounds.co.nz. 2007 New Zealand Tourism Award Winner. Mountain biking, kayaking, walking the Queen Charlotte Walkway. Tours or freedom hire. Great team, professional service.
  • Picton Model Engineers (Model Railroad), Foreshore, ☎ +64 3 573 8122, fax: +64 3 573-7660. every Sunday, every day of school holidays & every public holiday, 10:00-15:00 (weather permitting). Elevated track: 21.5, 31.5 and 5 in gauges.
  • Picton Golf Club, SH1 Koromiko, ☎ +64 3 573-7750, e-mail: picton@golf.co.nz.
  • Kiwi Mini Golf, Foreshore, ☎ +64 3 573-7136.
  • Twenty-five minutes from Picton is the Marlborough wine region, famous for its sauvignon blanc. The region has over 35 cellar doors offering tastings for visitors to compare wines ranging from boutique family producers to well-recognized names.

What to eat and drink in Picton, New Zealand


Eat

  • Le Café, 12-14 London Quay, ☎ +64 3 573 5588, fax: +64 3 573 5588, e-mail: lecafe@lecafepicton.co.nz. Great food breakfast, lunch or dinner. Large selection of local wines are beers, often organic food and sometimes a live music scene in the evenings.
  • Gusto, 33 High Street, ☎ +64 3 573 7171. Small funky cafe. Good coffee.

Drink

  • Seumus's Irish Bar, 25 Wellington St, ☎ +64 3 573-8994, fax: +64 3 573-8544, e-mail: seumuss_nook@hotmail.com. Run by a man from Co. Derry in Ireland and has one of the best pints of Guinness in the southern hemisphere.
  • Cafe Cortado, Cnr of High St & London Quay (From the ferry terminal take the first road on the left and it is opposite the War Memorial), ☎ +64 3 573-5630. 08:00-late. Great place to eat Breakfast, Lunch or Dinner.

Shopping in Picton, New Zealand


Precious minerals may be worth looking into, such as the lustrous greenstone from the wild, boulder-strewn rivers of the area. The area also favors a concentration of craftspeople, especially glass blowers, potters, weavers and wood carvers, who have been attracted by the high quality of raw materials.
  • Oriel Gallery, 35 High St, ☎ +64 3 573-5353, fax: +64 3 573-5357, e-mail: info@orielgallery.co.nz. Daily 10:00–17:00. Paintings, sculpture, jewelry, ceramics, photography, and textiles by artists from Marlborough and throughout New Zealand. Small gifts for travelers posted anywhere.
  • The Gallery (At Evolve), 20 High St, ☎ +64 3 573-7908. Daily 09:30–17:30. Boutique Art Gallery dealing in New Zealand Art, Art Jewellery, NZ Art Gifts and Photography from Marlborough and New Zealand.

Safety in Picton, New Zealand


The emergency telephone number in New Zealand is 111.

Ambulance, Fire, Police, Coastguard and Marine and Mountain Rescue can all be rapidly contacted via this one, FREE, emergencies only number.

The level of crime in New Zealand is similar to other western countries. Dishonesty offenses, such as theft, are by far the most frequent type of crime. Travelers should take simple, sensible precautions such as putting valuables away out of sight or in a secure place and locking doors of vehicles, even in remote locations, as much of this crime is opportunistic in nature.

New Zealand has a very high level of ultraviolet radiation and skin cancer, around 40% more intense than you will find in the Mediterranean during the summer. Sunglasses and sunscreen are highly recommended, especially if you are of Celtic descent. The sun's rays are more harmful here than anywhere else in the world and it is very easy to get sunburnt, even in as little as 10 minutes.

Language spoken in Picton, New Zealand


English, Māori, and New Zealand Sign are the official languages.

LOCAL TIME

7:15 am
August 19, 2019
Pacific/Auckland

CURRENT WEATHER

2 °C / 35.6 °F
sky is clear
Mon

2.99 °C/37 °F
light rain
Tue

0.6 °C/33 °F
heavy intensity rain
Wed

3.35 °C/38 °F
light rain
Thu

1.66 °C/35 °F
scattered clouds

LOCAL CURRENCY

NZD

1 USD = 0 NZD
1 EUR = 0 NZD
1 GBP = 0 NZD
1 AUD = 0 NZD
1 CAD = 0 NZD

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