Bluff is often considered New Zealand’s oldest permanently settled European town, although hotly contested with Kerikeri in Northland. The port town was established due to the lucrative flax trade in 1823/24. The area itself was not formerly settled by Maori. Bluff is generally referred to as New Zealand’s southernmost town. The Stirling Point Signpost attracts travellers from all over the globe for photos of the sign that shows the distance from Bluff to a variety of major centres and the South Pole.
What makes this town world-famous in New Zealand is “Bluff Oysters” renowned for their juiciness and flavour – something so good; we’ve got a festival for ‘em'.
The Bluff Oyster and Food Festival have a huge selection of seafood and locally grown and produced delicacies on offer. The festival itself has booked out all food stalls for the event, well in advance, highlighting just how popular the event is. Food on offer includes spit roast lamb, venison and paua (abalone) patties, whole and half crayfish, Nelson scallops, paua sausages, and winner of New Zealand best pies Stella Oyster pie!
Head south from Queenstown along State Highway 6 along Lake Wakatipu then through Kingston, Lumsden and Winton to Invercargill. Once at Dee Street in the city centre, follow the signs to Bluff, or look out for State Highway 1 southbound. Should take approximately 3 hours. Make sure that you check road conditions before you depart, while unlikely, there may be snow.
Oreti Beach and Sandy Point: made famous by the film “The World’s Fastest Indian” the beach is where Burt Munro set the New Zealand open beach speed record. Only 10km’s west of Invercargill, the beach covers 26kms of stunning rugged coastline
Stewart Island: the Island is New Zealand’s third-largest and one of our best-kept secrets. 85% of the island is a national park, with stunning walks, untouched bush and coastline all only an hour boat ride from Bluff. Be sure to book your ferry in advance.