Greymouth and the West Coast are home to some of the most stunning scenery and sights in New Zealand. The best way to see it all is by taking a scenic drive or day trip. The team at NZ Rent A Car’s Greymouth branch have come up with some of the top scenic drives and day trips in and around Greymouth:
The small town of Blackball is located approximately thirty minutes drive inland from Greymouth. If you are interested in getting an authentic feel for the history and culture of the West Coast, then a visit to Blackball will allow you to step back in time and explore a bygone era. Once a proud mining town (and the birthplace of the New Zealand Labour Party) Blackball fell by the wayside when its last mine closed over four decades ago. However, Blackball is becoming increasingly popular as a place for locals to own holiday homes, owing to its proximity to Lake Brunner. Highlights include taking a guided tour of the mines, the famous Blackball Salami Company, as well as stopping off at the ‘Formerly the Blackball Hilton’ hotel.
The community of Punakaiki, located between Greymouth and Westport on the West Coast, is home to one of the most famous scenic attractions in New Zealand; the Pancake Rocks. So-called because they resemble large stacks of pancakes, the Pancake Rocks are a unique sight that cannot be found anywhere else. The scenic coastal drive will only take you around 40 minutes by car, but along the way you will be treated with some of the most stunning scenery that NZ has to offer.
A popular Greymouth scenic drive that can also double as a fantastic day trip is traveling to Hokitika. This easy drive takes you south along State Highway 6 as you get to experience the rugged beauty of the West Coast. You’ll also be able to traverse a phenomenon largely unique to New Zealand – the one-lane bridge. Home of the infamous “Wild Food Festival” that draws visitors from around the world, Hokitika was once a proud gold mining town whose history stretches all the way back to 1864. Hokitika is home to many tourist attractions, including the National Kiwi Centre, Hokitika Clock Tower, and a stunning beach.
Another great Greymouth drive is the more substantial journey to Nelson. If your Kiwi travels are taking you north (and you want to explore the sunny Nelson and Marlborough regions) then the drive from Greymouth to Nelson offers you the opportunity to soak up some unbeatable scenery, and stop off in some very interesting places along the way. At just under 4 hours long, this drive will take you through charming towns such as Westport and Iangahua, as well giving you the opportunity to see the world-famous Pancake Rocks and Punakaiki.