South Island of NZ Fly Fishing Itinerary

South Island of NZ Fly Fishing Itinerary

Nelson to Motueka: Stonefly Lodge Luxury

Welcome to New Zealand!

As your flight descends into Nelson, get a stunning introduction to New Zealand's sunshine capital as you admire the glittering waters, forests, and bays from the plane windows.

In less than an hour, you'll discover a region of golden beaches, tranquil bays and lush coastal forests: welcome to the beautiful Motueka Valley region. Here at the gateway to the Abel Tasman and Kauhurangi National Parks, another luxury fishing getaway awaits you at beautiful Stonefly Lodge. Situated on 150 acres of private forest it's an idyllic introduction to New Zealand's South Island.

Tonight you can feast on local meats, seafood and home-grown produce fresh from the Lodge garden, and soak up the serenity of your secluded valley hideaway.

Approximate Distance: 47 km | 29 miles  Total Driving Time: 40 Min

Accommodation: Motueka - 3 Nights

Only 50 minutes drive from Nelson, overlooking the Motueka River, centrally located between three of New Zealand’s great National Parks. Situated within an exclusive private forest and built from local stone and timber, Stonefly Lodge offers an exceptional luxury experience for the discerning traveler.
Stonefly Lodge


Stonefly Lodge Fly Fishing (day 1 of 2)

Thanks to the wide choice of rivers available from Stonefly Lodge, your guided fly fishing experience can be tailored for gentle-flowing easy access rivers or more adventurous backcountry streams requiring accurate casting.

Average catch size for the region's wild brown trout is approx. 4lb-5lb, while catches of 8lb and above are quite common. Who knows, that 10lb trophy trout may only be a cast away!

Those who aren't fishing can enjoy some downtime wandering through the gorgeous Lodge grounds, feeding the resident alpacas or picking fresh fruits and veggies for the kitchen. Or take advantage of the stunning National Parks nearby for rafting, horseriding and guided hikes or cycling adventures.

Fishing near Stonefly Lodge


Stonefly Lodge Fly Fishing (day 2 of 2)

Wake up once more to Motueka River views from your private balcony. and get ready for a second day of stalking and sight-casting to big wild brown trout with Stonefly's knowledgeable guides.

With rivers from many different catchment systems to choose from, you’re blessed with unbelievable flexibility. Your guides will advise on the most appropriate fly fishing destination according to flow rates at the particular time of year.

Legendary rivers like the Motueka, Wangapeka and Baton are accessible within minutes on foot or by 4WD. Within an hour you could be at Nelson Lakes National Park trying your luck on the Travers or Waiau River.

You’re in New Zealand’s sunshine capital so the days are nice and long: plenty of time to give those wily brown trout a run for their money.

Stone Fly Fishing New Zealand


South to Owen River Lodge

Driving South to the Nelson Lakes region, your next destination - Owen River Lodge - lies in the centre of the best sighted brown trout fishery in the world.

Over 29 rivers and streams are accessible within a 90-minute drive, affording you an enormous choice and variety of rivers, streams and lakes to fish. The region offers huge variety, from small intimate waterways like the Owen River, to iconic freestone rivers such as the Wairau.

If you have seen New Zealand’s rivers described as “gin clear”, now you'll get to see the proof. You'll be stalking those 7lb or 8lb wild brown trout in water so clear that it looks 12 inches deep when it’s up to your waist.

Approximate Distance: 100 km | 62 miles  Total Driving Time: 1 Hour

Accommodation: Near Murchison - 3 Nights

Owen River
Owen River Lodge is a 5-star boutique fly fishing lodge right on the banks of the Owen River with accommodation just a stroll away in individual high-quality cottages. It was recently rated the number 1 specialty lodging provider in the South Island by Trip Advisor. The lodge offers you a private retreat with a relaxed, highly professional, understated service and wonderful food in stylish surrounds. Fly fishing guides are available to help make the most of your time.
Owen River Lodge


Stalking the Wild Brown Trout (Day 1 of 2)

Over 29 rivers and streams are accessible within a 90-minute drive of Owen River Lodge: this affords you an enormous choice of rivers, streams and lakes to fish. The region offers huge variety, from intimate waterways like the nearby Owen River, to the iconic freestone waters of the Wairau.

The Owen River Lodge fishing guides are among the most experienced in the country, and are all members of the New Zealand Professional Fishing Guides Association. They'll make sure your two days here are full of action, excitement and plenty of fun.

Non-fishing party members are welcomed at Owen Lodge, and the team will ensure they have a sensational stay. If they can bear to leave the mountain views from the outdoor jacuzzi spa, there are beautiful swimming holes by the river (one of the Lodge's dogs will probably invite themselves along!), rafting and kayaking, golf, hiking and adventure activities galore.

Owen River


Stalking the Wild Brown Trout (Day 2 of 2)

The rivers around Murchison / Nelson Lakes have huge reputations: anglers travel from all over the world to fish the waters of D’Urville, the Sabine, the Wairau, the Karamea, the Hope and the Boyle. With so many outstanding choices, you’ll find a stretch of river all to yourselves even in the busier seasons.

If you have seen New Zealand’s rivers described as “gin clear”, now you'll understand why. You'll stalk 7lb or 8lb wild brown trout in water so clear it looks 12 inches deep when it’s up to your waist. It’s easy for you to find your target, but also for your target to see you. It’s a challenge, but it makes success even sweeter!

Round off your day with a sumptuous dinner cooked with ingredients sourced fresh from the Lodge garden. Watch the sunset from the deck and enjoy your last night here: the splendour of Southern Alps beckons tomorrow.

Owen River Lodge


Alpine Splendour: Drive to Lake Wanaka

Today fly to Queenstown and drive across the majestic Crown Range to Wanaka, a tranquil lakeside town with dramatic views of the Southern Alps.

Easily explored on foot, this charming little township is packed with fine food and wine and boutique shopping. A stroll or bike ride around the picturesque shores of Lake Wanaka is a must.

Spectacular walks & hikes, skiing, water sports and boating options are all available here. The mountain backdrop is perfect for a for a skydive or even a flight in a vintage Tiger Moth plane.

The pristine waterways of the region offer some of the best dry fly and sight fishing in the world. Seasoned fisherman relish the opportunity to stalk fish, testing their casting abilities to the limit in this diverse and challenging landscape.

With two full days of fly fishing coming up, you can make the most of this premium fishing location.

Approximate Distance: 47 km | 29 miles  Total Driving Time: 40 min

Accommodation: Wanaka - 3 Nights

Lake Wanaka
Tin Tub Luxury Lodge is situated on a stunning lake hosting mountain views in a simply spectacular Lake Wanaka location. The lodge gracefully sits in a garden setting on the hills overlooking the lake and mountains yet only a few minutes from Wanaka Township. Perfect for all seasons with its solar heated swimming pool, sauna, hot tubs (in the Lodge rooms), a gym and a drying room for the avid skier.
Tin Tub Luxury Lodge Lake Wanaka.


Premium Fly Fishing in Diverse Waterways (day 1 of 2)

Fly Fishing in the Wanaka Region

For the next two days Wanaka's massive lakes, cascading waterfalls, remote rivers and lush valleys will be your playground.

The options are immense: Lakes Wanaka and Hawea, the mighty Clutha River, the Matukituki, Makarora, Wilkin Rivers and Dingle Burn – waterways well-known in fishing circles as premier fishing locations.

The region is an outstanding “classroom” for improving technique and broadening your skills. Pick up tips from your expert guide, learning to target the local trout with remarkable precision and stay a step ahead of your target in a wide range of settings.

This picturesque alpine town will delight non-anglers too: Wanaka is as much a hub for outdoor adventurers as it is for those who like nothing better than relaxing with a glass of wine by the gorgeous lakefront. You'll want to stay forever.

Wanaka Fly Fishing


Premium Fly Fishing in Diverse Waterways (day 2 of 2)

Spend a second day exploring the Wanaka’s region’s freestone rivers, deep pools and spring-fed creeks while drinking in the breathtaking scenery all around you. Talk sight-fishing tactics with your guide who will whisk you away to the best fly fishing locations for the day’s conditions.

For a classic Kiwi experience take a fishing trip out on the lake amid stunning snow-capped mountain scenery and have a go at fishing for trout and salmon at the same time. Sit back and relax while your guide cooks your catch on the BBQ for a taste you'll always remember.

Fly Fishing Wanaka


Wanaka to Te Anau: Gateway to Fiordland National Park

Say farewell to Queenstown and journey to the peaceful lakeside township of Te Anau today. It's another area of outstanding natural beauty, and several key Lord of The Rings movie scenes were filmed amid the unspoilt forests and lakes of this region.

Some of the most famous New Zealand Great Walks trails begin nearby, such as the Milford, Routeburn and Kepler Tracks. Immerse yourselves in the gorgeous surroundings: flight-seeing, fly fishing, kayaking, sailing and horse riding are all on offer and are great ways to get up close to nature.

Approximate Distance: 228 kms | 142 miles  Total Driving Time: 3 hours 8 mins

Accommodation: Te Anau - 2 Nights

Te Anau

Welcome to Fiordland Lodge, a 5 star Luxury Lodge with the comfort and charm of a Fishing Lodge super sized, set in a World Heritage Area for the discerning traveller. The rooms are comfortable and you will want to enjoy the roaring log fire in the main lounge. Accommodation includes a very high standard of breakfast and dinner complete with pre-dinner canapes, and an excellent wine list to peruse. Fiordland Lodge is the perfect stepping off point to explore the World Heritage status Fiordland areas including Milford and Doubtful Sounds.

Fiordland Lodge


Te Anau: Jetboat Fishing on the Waiau River

Fiordland Jetboat Fishing Expedition 
Discover the mighty Waiau River today on a thrilling jetboat fishing expedition through pure wilderness habitat.

Winding along the edge of Fiordland National Park, the Upper Waiau is packed with hard-fighting brown and rainbow trout, ready to take on all challengers.

Soak up the scenery as you drift-fish your way along this immensely wide and powerful river. Bordered by pristine forest, this remote haven is inaccessible by foot and the trout here are in great condition, living relatively undisturbed.

Non-fishing companions will love the experience too, with the chance to stop and walk on the Kepler Track, traverse swing bridges and linger on secluded beaches along the way.

Few people get to access an isolated and untouched paradise like this. As your jetboat speeds homewards towards Te Anau with white water frothing in your wake, you'll be pinching yourselves to check that it wasn't a dream. 



Milford Sound Cruise - Queenstown

No visit to New Zealand is complete without a pilgrimage to the "Eighth Natural Wonder of the World": Milford Sound.

Milford Sound Nature Cruise 
The Milford Road takes you from Te Anau to Milford Sound on one of the most scenic drives on the planet. A glorious labyrinth of soaring peaks is punctuated by unspoiled rainforest, plunging valleys, azure lakes, waterfalls, and glaciers.

Arriving in Milford, you will board your purpose-built cruise vessel and sail the length of the Sound, dwarfed by towering cliffs and waterfalls all around you. The onboard nature guide will tell you all about the seals, penguins, and dolphins who frequently visit this mesmerising location.

After your cruise, you'll return to Queenstown, the perfect setting for your final night in New Zealand. For a memorable end to your adventure, toast your trip with a glass of award-winning local pinot noir at one of the wonderful eateries overlooking Lake Wakatipu and the Southern Alps.

Approximate Distance: 228 km | 142 miles  Total Driving Time: 3 hours 8 mins

Accommodation: Queenstown - 1 Night

Milford Sound

Your European styled boutique hotel is awaiting you in Queenstown, situated in a quiet yet central location with an easy 3 minute walk to local shops and restaurants. Take in the stunning views of the town, lakes and mountains as you enjoy a delicious cooked or continental breakfast on your private outdoor patio. In the winter months cuddle up with an open fire as you take in the gorgeous alpine backdrop. 

Browns Boutique Hotel - Queenstown


Homeward Bound - Bon Voyage!

"Haere rā" Goodbye! and Bon Voyage! Today we say farewell. We take care of your transfer to Queenstown Airport where you will board your onward flight to Auckland, taking with you the magical memories of a truly exceptional New Zealand holiday.

We know you will love fly fishing in New Zealand and our promise is to make your journey as hassle-free and hospitable as possible - ensuring that today you leave with a memory card full of photos, and huge smiles on your faces when recalling your time in New Zealand! Have a great homeward journey, farewell and hope to see you again soon in Aotearoa, New Zealand.

New Zealand Fishing Adventure


Before you arrive in NZ...

Practising your basic casting techniques before arriving in New Zealand will allow you to maximise the many opportunities to catch "the big one". This will help to prevent excessive false casts which could spook your target unnecessarily. New Zealand trout can be very unforgiving of poorly presented flies!

Felt-soled boots are prohibited for use by freshwater anglers in New Zealand. The felt may harbour microscopic waterborne pests, particularly didymo which is a major concern here. MAF Biosecurity New Zealand also requires ALL used freshwater fishing equipment brought into New Zealand to be clean and dry.

Trout Fishing NZ

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What Rhodri says about this tour: Of course you're coming to hunt for that elusive trophy trout, but could there be a better place on earth to do it? Sensational alpine views, backcountry wilderness, and our legendary Kiwi hospitality are waiting for you right here!
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