Catlins makes bucket list

AWESOME: Stunning scenery on the Catlins Traverse Walk.
AWESOME: Stunning scenery on the Catlins Traverse Walk.

The Catlins Traverse Walk is on a bucket list of the top 33 activities in New Zealand, compiled by a leading German travel company.

It was ranked with well-known attractions such as the Tongariro Crossing, the Routeburn, Waitomo Caves, Fox Glacier and Akaroa.

The two-day, three-night, 30km, guided walk is run by Mary and Fergus Sutherland with walkers staying at their Mohua Park cottages.

It crosses the Catlins, beginning at The Wisp and finishing on the coast, and includes views, rain forest, farm land beech forest, wildlife and historic features.

Walkers traverse the Catlins River Valley and follow the old Catlins rail route over Puketiro Saddle, down Maclennan Valley to the coast at Papatowai.

Mary said the bucket list was put together by the Best of Travel group in association with Tourism New Zealand and it was great for the Catlins to make the list.

The couple had been in business for 25 seasons and won New Zealand eco-tourism, adventure tourism and business sustainability awards, she said.

They were also one of the first in Otago to have their business awarded an enviro gold award from Qualmark.

She agreed they had done the hard yards over the years.

"What we have is a very good product that is recognised well outside the district."

Mary described the Traverse Walk as the "great Catlins walk".

She was pleased with what the international recognition would be mean for the Catlins as whole.

"It's something very special to be recognised as one of 33," she said.

The Southland Times