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Discover the dramatic wilderness of the South Island’s wild West Coast

The West Coast of New Zealand’s South Island is a remote and sparsely populated, 600km strip of narrow land between the Tasman Sea and the peaks of the Southern Alps.

Greymouth is the largest town on the West Coast - it is known for its incredible coastal scenery and on a clear day the majestic Aoraki Mount Cook can be seen.

Visitors can learn about the town’s gold and coal mining history at the local museum, visit the famous Monteith's Brewery, and enjoy activities such as caving, white-water rafting and sea kayaking.

South of Greymouth is Hokitika, also known as Cool Little Town. This charming town is a great place to understand the fascinating history of the West Coast, and with its beachside town centre, historical buildings and monuments, spectacular sunsets, incredible mountain views, excellent art galleries and cool cafes, Hokitika is a wonderful place to visit on your South Island itinerary.

Further south is Westland Tai Poutini National Park which stretches from the highest peaks in the Southern Alps all the way to the West Coast.

The park is home to the famous Fox and Franz Josef Glaciers –New Zealand’s biggest and most accessible glaciers.

Visitors can hike in the glacier valleys or take a scenic helicopter ride to see these incredible glaciers from a different perspective.

Call us on +44 117 313 3300 to start planning your holiday, we’re looking forward to hearing from you


When To Go

The South Island’s West Coast bears the brunt of the changeable and harsh weather coming in off the Tasman Sea. It is possible to experience ‘Four seasons in a day' regardless of the time of year, therefore we recommend that you pack waterproofs and warm clothes, plus a sunhat and suntan lotion.

The West Coast experiences the highest rainfall of the entire country, particularly during spring from September to November. During the summer, from December to February, the sun shines from 5.30am to 10pm making this is a lovely time of year to explore the West Coast.

Autumn is from March to May and the daytime temperatures are pleasant, although it can be chilly at night. Winter is from June to August and this is a fantastic time to hike on Fox Glacier and Franz Josef as the glaciers are at their biggest and best.

New Zealand's monthly weather chart

Call us on +44 117 313 3300 to start planning your holiday, we’re looking forward to hearing from you


Accommodation in the West Coast

Our recommended accommodation on the South Island’s West Coast is Hurunui Jacks which is located 12kms from Hokitika. Set in the spectacular West Coast wilderness, Hurunui Jacks is a luxury campsite nestled in an ancient rainforest on the banks of the Kaniere River. The spacious, heated tents feature comfortable beds with cotton sheets and pure wool duvets, private bathrooms with hot water showers and outdoor bathtubs where you can relax with a glass of wine and star gaze.

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Find out more and tailor your perfect trip with the help of
our specialist team on +44 117 313 3300