Our best wake up spots

Incredible sunrise spots and full day adventures make these eight places some of the best to wake up at along the SSR.

Natural wonders, exciting adventures, wildlife sightings and secluded retreats are some of the treats of the Southern Scenic Route (SSR). We’ve picked out eight top spots to wake up on the SSR, including incredible sunrise options and places with all day adventures.

The Remarkables

Waking up to the sun rising over The Remarkables is a sight to behold. As the icy tips of the mountains are touched with the first rays of sun, you can sit back and enjoy your tea or coffee before a busy day of exploring the many natural attractions of the area. Frankton has many choices for accommodation, from modern luxury to family friendly holiday homes.

Doubtful Sound

An overnight cruise around Doubtful or Milford Sound is an experience to remember. The cruises take you into the peaceful waters of the fiords, with expert guides sharing more of the origins of the awe-inspiring channels as well as the marine animals that frequent the area.

Credit: Real Journeys

Te Anau

The township of Te Anau offers a number of lakeside accommodation options, giving you the chance to catch the first light of day on the pristine waters. There are also many hikes in the area, as well as Milford Sound north of the town, making this a good place to start a full day adventure.

Manapouri

Another peaceful lakeside stay is Manapouri. Here you’ll have everything you need for a quiet night before continuing on to Te Anau or Western Southland. There are a handful of smaller accommodation options available, including Cabot Lodge and Possum Lodge.

Bluff

As well as giving you the chance to watch the sunrise over the end of the world, Bluff is a great place to be early in the morning because it’s the gateway to Stewart Island. You can take a morning plane or ferry, and spend your day exploring all the island has to offer.

Owaka

Owaka is a go-to place to begin your journey into The Catlins. A popular accommodation option that makes the most of beautiful surrounding views is Tiromoana. The fully self-contained lodge is five minutes from the township, close to many attractions, and is both comfortable and peaceful.

Curio Bay

With friendly, locally-owned campgrounds and holiday homes right on the coast, Curio and surrounding bays are a great place to stop for the night. Waking up early will reward you with a gorgeous sunrise and give you the chance to see local wildlife as the world wakes up. Hector’s dolphins, yellow-eyed penguins, and New Zealand fur seals and sea lions are often spotted in this area.

Otago Peninsula

Staying at one of the gorgeous and rustic accommodation options on the Otago Peninsula will give you unobscured access to the peninsula and all it has to offer, including sighting the mighty albatross, penguins and fur seals early in the morning.

Early morning Wildlife Tours on the Otago Peninsula


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