New Zealand is lucky enough to be filled with an abundance of crystal clear, majestic lakes spread right throughout the country. From the calm, aqua blue waters of the South Islands to the powerful lakes of the North Island, visiting each one is an experience not to be missed.
Blue Lake, or Tikitapu as local Maori named it, is a lake that is popular with water sports, boatmen and families wanting a place to have a Sunday picnic as it houses BBQ sites and grassy patches with views over the lake. Don’t forget to enjoy the easy walking track that surrounds the lake, highlighting the stunning beaches and lush native bush whilst giving you incredible views of the lake, and surrounding lakes. A must do on a sunny afternoon.
For a calm, serene lake you can’t go past Diamond Lake in Wanaka. Ice age glaciers carved this lake, and it stands out with its native forest and shrubs that nestle into bluff systems. Take the walk up to the Lake Wanaka viewpoint for breath-taking views of the surrounding area. Heading north after Diamond Lake is Lake Brunner, which houses some of the best brown trout fishing spots in the south island. All you need to fish is available for hire locally, including fishing guides, licenses and tackles.
For a perfect balance of nature, visit Lake Matheson, which has created a truly extraordinary reflection of NZ’s highest peaks, Mount Cook and Mount Tasman. It is a stunning and natural leaching of organic matter from the surrounding native forest floor that causes the colour. Formed about 14,000 years ago Lake Matheson is a timeless spot, from the native wildlife to the abundant forests and walks; this is a place you will never forget.
Lake Tekapo, one look at this lake will leave you breathless. From the lone, stone church to the snow-peaked mountains in the distance; this aqua blue lake will leave you feeling as though you have travelled to another planet. In addition to the temptation of trout and salmon fishing, you may take pleasure in mountain biking, water sports, hiking trails, 4WD tours, skiing, snowboarding, scenic flights and golf. After a busy day, relax in quality accommodation or the convivial bars and restaurants.
Surrounding these lakes there is an array of accommodation, as well as some walking tracks including serviced Walkers Huts for those wishing to tackle some of the more strenuous (and more rewarding!) walks. Stay in a local Bed and Breakfast, or opt for a motel in one of the nearby towns or cities. Whatever you choose to do, rest assured that visits to these lakes will leave a lasting impression on you and create memories to be treasured for a lifetime.