Blenheim (New Zealand)

Blenheim is the most populous town in the Marlborough wine-growing region in the north-east of the South Island of New Zealand. It is one of the sunniest towns in the country, with summers that are typically warm and dry, and winters that are normally cool and frosty with clear sunny days. It has 30,000 residents.


Get in

By train

Coastal Pacific (formerly TranzCoastal), +64 4 495 0775 (email, fax +64 4 472 8903, Freephone 0800 TRAINS (0800 872 467) (NZ only)). Train service operates daily from October through April between Christchurch and Picton via Blenheim and Kaikoura. There are stunning views with the Kaikoura mountains on one side and the Pacific Ocean on the other. It leaves Christchurch at 7AM, then leaves Blenheim at 11:46AM and arrives Picton at 12:13PM. The train leaves Picton at 1PM, leaves Blenheim at 1:33PM and arrives Christchurch at 6:21PM. The railway station is on Grove Rd.

By bus

InterCity buses and Atomic shuttle buses travel Picton-Christchurch return or Picton-Nelson return, both of which pass through Blenheim. The bus will drop you off in the railway station, which is also the information centre. The centre of town is south-west from the railway station. If you want to walk into town from the station, cross State Highway 1 at the southern end of the carpark. The river 40m further marks the beginning of the central business district.

Nelson Lakes Shuttles specialise in providing transport for trampers, hikers, climbers, mountain bikers and skiers. They run on-demand and scheduled services to St Arnaud, Nelson Lakes National Park, Kahurangi National Park, the Richmond Ranges and other tramping destinations further afield.

By car

A short 20 minute drive south on State Highway 1 from Picton which is the home of the terminal for the inter-island ferry service from Wellington. From Nelson, Blenheim is 1 1/2 hours east, travelling via Havelock (30 minutes) and Renwick (10 minutes) on State Highway 6. State Highway 62 runs north east from St Arnaud (1 1/4 hours), Murchison (2 hours) and Westport (3 1/2 hours) From the south, State Highway 1 takes you from Christchurch (4 hours), Kaikoura (1 1/2 hours) and Seddon (15 minutes)

By plane

Blenheim has a small airport at Woodbourne, 10 minutes from Blenheim and 4 minutes from Renwick. Air New Zealand has regular services from Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch, and air2there commuter aircraft fly to Paraparaumu (just north of Wellington).

Sounds Air flies commuter aircraft from/to Wellington and Paraparaumu multiple times a day.

Get around

The Blenheim Bus Service is limited and of no real use to travelers. The centre of town and most accommodation is within easy walking distance. Vineyards and other attractions further afield will require transport.

There are no traffic lights in Blenheim. Major intersections are controlled by roundabouts, including one five-way roundabout with a railway line running through the middle of it.

For those without the inclination to bike or without a car, taxis or a tour are the most practical options.


Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre




Casual dining


Ethnic food

Formal dining


Marlborough is one of the top wine growing areas in New Zealand. A free map is available from visitor information centres.


Most of the tastings are free and the service is very friendly. A biking wine tour in Blenheim is a fantastic way to spend an afternoon. You can bring home a bottle from each in your rented bike's haversack. Most Marlborough wineries focus on white wines, with many of the wineries providing only one red variety plus a blush variety.

Due to national liquor laws, all winery cellar doors are closed on Christmas Day (25 December), Good Friday, Easter Sunday, and before 13:00 on Anzac Day (25 April) unless otherwise stated.


In recent years, Blenheim's drinking scene has diversified:








Go next

Routes through Blenheim

Picton  N  S  Seddon Kaikoura
Nelson Renwick  W  E  END

This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Saturday, March 19, 2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.