Cromwell is a small town with an interesting history. Originally called the Junction to represent the point where the Clutha and Kawarau Rivers join, the area was a mecca for gold miners in the 1800’s. Today the surrounding hills are littered with reminders of these staunch pioneers and gold-seekers. The remains of stone cottages, mining equipment, shafts, and old sluicing boxes can be seen - some can even be visited.
During the construction of the massive hydro systems of the South Island in the 1970s Cromwell town centre was relocated to make way for Lake Dunstan which formed after the valley was flooded in 1992. Some parts of the old town remain and you can see those by following the signposts.
Still a popular junction, Cromwell is a busy township renowned for its fruit growing industry, tourism, and farming. The wines of the region are also gaining a global reputation as many award-winning Pinot's originate here and nearby Bannockburn. Wineries such as Lowburn Ferry, Felton Road, Mount Difficulty, Rockburn, and Wooing Tree are making a name for themselves locally and internationally with their fine produce.
Take a tour through this 35ha orchard on an electric tour bus and learn the fascinating story of how the orchard begun, its history, machinery, pollination, pruning, thinning, pest & frost protection, irrigation, markets, picking & packing. You will get the opportunity to pick some fruit from the trees in season - everything from cherries, apricots, peaches, nectarines, plums, greengages apples or pears to eat and take home with you! You can handpick your own fruit ready for harvest late November to April or if you're visiting during the off season (May to mid November) your tour will be completed with box of produce from the Fruitstall.
The Goldfields Mining Centre is a special place where visitors can gain an appreciation of the life and working environment of those early miners who struggled against the harsh and sometimes dangerous conditions along Central Otago’s famed Kawarau Gorge.
Located on the banks of the spectacular Kawarau River, the Goldfields Mining Centre is an historic reserve which has been set aside by New Zealand’s Department of Conservation to preserve an authentic mining site where gold has been mined for over 100 years and can still be found in the rocks & gravels of this unique area.
A popular style of touring is to take a preplanned self drive road trip. After a thorough consultation with you we expertly plan and create your self drive tour around New Zealand. These tours allow you the freedom to explore at leisure with the comfort and security of pre-booked activities and accommodations. Route suggestions, APP guidance plus local support mean your New Zealand vacation is in safe hands. See self drive ideas here
If you prefer to let someone else do the work then an escorted small group tour might be for you. Our sister company at New Zealanbd Coach has a range of hand picked small group itineraries are ideal if you prefer to travel in the company of like minded people. Tours are limited to a certain number of participants which means different accommodation options, exclusive activities and of course a knowledgeable guide ensures you get to see the best of New Zealand. See small group tours here.
A private guided tour offers true flexibility and the security of a knowledgeable local guiding you all the way. Well planned itineraries ensure you see exactly what you want to see but with your own driver-guide you can adapt to suit the day or your preference. 100% tailor-made to suit you a private tour is a great option when travelling as a small group. All our self drive itineraries can be replanned and priced using a private driver and guide, so if it is what you fancy just contact us to discuss.
All North Island touring ideas - See here to explore the diverse North Island - itinerary suggestions.
All South Island touring ideas - Iconic scenery and landscapes await on this made for touring island. See itinerary suggestions
All Nationwide touring ideas - See the best of New Zealand on these all encompassing touring itinerary ideas