Taylor River Blenheim, New Zealand

Where to Stay - Hotels in Blenheim New Zealand

Blenheim is at the heart of New Zealand's Marlborough country, the largest wine-producing region internationally renowned for its Sauvignon Blanc. A great time to book for Blenheim hotels would be before the Marlborough Wine and Food Festival that takes place in early February when the summers hover above 30°C. Weather-wise, Blenheim recently outperformed Nelson on the northwest as the "sunniest city in New Zealand", thanks to its towering mountains that trap the heat and the rain shadow effect they create that protects Blenheim from the heaviest of rains coming from the west.

The start of summer is also the best time to cruise the Marlborough Sounds 30 minutes north, an astounding collection of barely explored coves, pristine islets and crystal-clear waterways where the InterIslander ferry service from Wellington makes its way down to South Island and unloads passenger and cargo in the port town of Picton.

“Character” accommodation in Blenheim New Zealand

The Marlborough Wine Trail is an extensive circuit best explored over a space of several days. Book your Blenheim motel accommodation online to decide where to stay in Blenheim, or to book cheap Blenheim accommodation; whilst you discover the wines of Marlborough. The central business district itself has an assortment of unpretentious lodges, motels and inns, although you can always choose to splurge in a singular chateau which claims to be the best among hotels in Blenheim and in northern South Island.

Because of its country character and wine-growing tradition, Blenheim is rather famous for “character” accommodation, family-owned and owner-run cottages and bed and breakfasts which emphasize intimate atmosphere over room occupancy.

A French provencal B&B, for example, is just five minutes out of Blenheim CBD where you wake up to the smell of lavender and enjoy brunch in the midst of pregnant vineyards. Ten kilometers north right on the wine trail, you can find a 19th century Blenheim accommodation that is also on the list of New Zealand’s Historic Places.

Blenheim’s local loop & Marlborough Sounds mussel run

If you are pushed for time, an apt introduction to the region would be the day-long tour of the Local Loop which would bring you to a combination of wineries within 10 kilometres of town, cultural and historic landmarks, strawberry fields, olive groves and confectioneries.

Book your accommodation in Blenheim well ahead if you plan to come during the Marlborough Wine Festival so you can take part in viticulture seminars and wine rituals. Learn which wine goes best with which food, or strut your stuff in the catwalk on the vineyards of Brancott Estate, the festival's usual venue.

After leaving your hotel in Blenheim, quench your thirst for more outdoor adventures along the scenic and sinuous Queen Charlotte Track which parallels the Marlborough Sounds. Pedal your way to fitness along the 71-kilometre track, or join a "delivery cruise" to private resorts where you get onboard a vessel bound for supply runs to these secluded beachside estates.

A small-crowd lunch cruise has become quite a craze, and so is a seafood cruise which leaves Picton for a visit to a mussel farm. If you are going back to Wellington anyway, save on your spending money and take the InterIslander ferry service which plies the same waters to cross Cook Strait and unload cargo and passengers in Wellington, New Zealand's capital and film and foodie haven.