South Island MountainsSüdinselgebirge
The hilly farmlands of Otago and Southland and the wide, shallow Canterbury Plains lie to the eastern side of the Southern Alps. Some parts of the northern and southern islands lie on the Australian Plate, while the remainder of the southern island lies on the Pacific Ocean. Outside of Rotorua you can experience heat sources and other heat activities in most areas of the Northern Island just off Turangi, Hanmer Springs and the west coast of the South Island.
You will find long stretches of beach in the far northern part of the island and on most of its coasts, ideal for bathing, windsurfing and sundowning. Northeastern Island's western shore has deep golden dunes with ferruginous rock. South Island Northern has some nice sands, while the coastal area around the remainder of the South Island is rather wild and rough.
Approximately one fifth of the northern island and two third of the southern island are mountains. These mountains, which extend from the northern part of the northern island to the southern bottom, are the result of the colliding Australia and Pacific plates. In the course of million of years abundant sediments (eroded by mountain rivers) form the huge Canterbury Plains on the South Island and a number of smaller ones in the South.
Known for their breathtaking scenery, these majestic icebergs have been excavated over millennia by mobile icebergs and are readily available to climbers and walkers. Marlborough Sound and Fiordland are prime example of high mountains immersed in the ocean, producing stunning sound and fjords. Clear, shallow, still waters encircled by wonderful scrub make these areas perfect for boat and kayak trips.