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Local food and wine

The Classic New Zealand Wine Trail takes you through three major wine growing regions, Marlborough, Wairarapa and Hawke’s Bay, collectively responsible for over 80% of New Zealand’s total wine production.

Hawke's Bay (days 1 - 2)

Morning - day 1

Market Vines small
  • Start the day discovering the tastes of Hawke’s Bay by following a self guided Food Trail. Visit farm gates, artisan food producers and food-destination outlets for fruit, honey, cheese, olives, wine, chocolate and much more. Collect a copy of the Food Trail map from any Hawke’s Bay i-SITE visitor centre.
  • Try the flavours of the Silky Oak Chocolate Company and explore the only chocolate museum in the southern hemisphere.
  • Stop in at The Filter Room and Cider Tree Cafe to get a glimpse of the traditional craft of brewing before trying one of the premium ales and ciders.

Afternoon - day 1

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  • Take a afternoon wine tour with a local guide by van, bicycle or even helicopter. Pick up Hawke’s Bay Winery Guide, available from local cellar doors and local i-SITE visitor centre.
  • Learn about the history of wine making throughout the ages at the Church Road Wine Museum and enjoy a tasting of current vintage releases.
  • In the evening, broaden your cooking skills by taking a cooking class with experienced chef Malcolm Redmond at Breckenridge Lodge.

Morning - day 2

Wairarapa strawberries
  • Pick your own strawberries at The Strawberry Patch in Havelock North.
  • Get behind the scenes and take a tour of the Village Press Olivery at Sileni Estates Winery or enjoy a wine and cheese match at their epicurean centre.

Drive south through the Tararua district to the Wairarapa, an easy circuit through pastoral landscapes to outlying vineyard clusters and charming small villages. On the way, stop at the historic Tui Brewery in Mangatainoka. Join a guided tour and taste your way through the selection of ales, checking out the museum, shop and café.

Wairarapa (days 2 - 3)

Afternoon - day 2

Wairarapa 2
  • Tour and discover boutique family-owned vineyards and artisan food producers in Martinborough on foot or bicycle.
  • Pick up a Wairarapa Wine Trail Map from local cellar doors and i-SITE visitor centres in the region.
  • Delve into the world of olives at Olivo in Martinborough. Taste the oils and learn about olive oil production.
  • Stop in at Martinborough Wine Merchants for an extensive range of local wines, a total wine tour of the region in one store.

Morning - day 3

  • Taste artisan sheep’s milk cheese at Kingsmeade Cheese in Masterton - the gouda and cheddar-style cheese are fantastic.
  • Explore the colonial village of Greytown, browse the antique, homeware and fashion shops and art galleries.
  • Give in to your sweet tooth at Schoc, an artisan chocolate studio on the main street of Greytown.
  • Indulge in authentic French breads and pastries handcrafted by an artisan baker at The French Baker in Greytown.

Continue south less than 90minutes drive over the bush-clad Rimutaka Ranges into New Zealand's culinary capital, Wellington

Wellington (days 3 - 4)

Afternoon - day 3

Wellington 3
  • Craft beer appreciation is not so much a cult as a full-blown religion in these parts thanks to a trail of passionate local brewers. Check out the best spots in the craft beer capital.
  • Enjoy one of the many award-winning restaurants.
  • After dinner treats can be found at The Little Waffle Shop or Espressoholic; if you prefer dessert in the form of a delicious cocktail, there are plenty of favoured bars to check out while you’re in town.

Morning - day 4

havana bar
  • Explore the compact capital on foot with a Zest Food Tour introducing the lively food scene while meeting makers, roasters, brewers and chocolatiers!
  • Open daily is Moore Wilsons, where café owners and restauranteurs do their shopping. Discover a tempting array of locally-produced meat, bread, fresh vegetables and deli foods.
  • Let yourself have leisurely starts and enjoy as many of the great Wellington brunch spots your stay allows.
  • Jackson Street in Petone, a short train trip away, has great shops for cooks, including Bookfeast and House of Knives. Stop at Te Puna Wai Ora for natural water direct from the aquifer. Jackson Street is also home to renowned eateries La Bella Italia, along with several coffee roasters.

Sail between Wellington and Picton on board the Interislander ferry, experiencing “Kaitaki Plus” an exclusive private lounge with complimentary beer, wine, tea, coffee and a mini buffet.

Marlborough (days 4 - 5)

Evening - day 4 (post ferry sailing)

Sounds mussels
  • Take a twilight cruise over the summer season in the Marlborough Sounds enjoying local wines served with fresh seafood. In Queen Charlotte Sound enjoy the a range of great cruises with Beachcomber Cruises or, from Havelock, board the Greenshell™ Mussel Cruise with Marlborough Tour Company.

Day 5

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  • Create your own tour of the wineries using the Marlborough Wine Trail Guide or collect from local cellar doors and i-SITE visitor centres in the region.
  • Discover why Marlborough has been named the 'Gourmet Province of New Zealand' with a personal food tour. Meet local food growers and producers who will delight your taste buds with their produce and inspire you with their stories.
  • Catch a helicopter for a wine tour with a difference. There are a wide range of ½ and full day tours.
  • Visit Makana Confections chocolate factory and watch the confectionery masters at work.
  • Visit The Vines Village to sample the extensive range of locally produced olive oils and internationally award winning liqueurs and culinary fare at Prenzel.
  • Stop at a roadside stall for fresh seasonal produce or pick your own fruit including cherries, berries and stone fruit at one of the many region's orchards.