Our Central Otago Photography tour will take you on a scenic tour through Central Otago to photograph the magical winter landscapes with tuition from local photographer Georgia Hendrie. The tour concludes on the stunning Otago Peninsula with a chance to view the Aurora Australis.
Our Central Otago Photography Tour is very much for amateur photographers looking for the opportunity to visit some amazing rural locations and get a collection of unique photos, with all the logistics and organising taken care of. Budding local photographer Georgia Hendrie joins us on the journey. Georgia has a huge passion and talent for photography and is really keen to help everyone get the most out of their cameras and take amazing photos.
There is NO CYCLING on this tour – it is all about taking photos of the stunning raw Otago scenery! Our scenic photography tour NZ is very relaxed and all about the scenery. All levels of photography skills are catered for.
Central Otago Photography Tour Highlights
- Journey through and photograph the magical landscape of Central Otago during winter
- Enjoy the vast and raw ‘big sky’ landscapes and endless photo opportunities
- Enjoy photography tuition from budding local photographer Georgia Hendrie
- Explore the historic gold mining town of St Bathan’s
- Relax and enjoy two nights at Dunstan House in the quaint village of Clyde
- Relax and enjoy two nights at the peaceful Wedderburn Cottages
- Discover the serene waters of the Otago Peninsula with a chance to view the famed Aurora
- Capture the Edwardian Baroque style architecture of Dunedin City
Day 1 Christchurch/Queenstown – Clyde
Our scenic photography tour NZ begins in Christchurch. Departing the Garden City enjoy a very scenic drive south through the Mackenzie Country to Central Otago via the scenic inland route that passes by Lakes Tekapo and Pukaki, and over the Lindis Pass to Clyde. Stops along the way at various locations for refreshments and photo opportunities are provided. Alternatively there is the option of meeting the tour in Clyde in the afternoon from Queenstown which we can organise for you. We stay in the charming historic precinct of Clyde in the beautifully restored Dunstan House.
Day 2 Clyde
We meet up with budding local photographer Georgia Hendrie who will accompany us on our journey. Georgia has a huge passion and talent for photography and is really keen to help everyone out in getting the most out of their cameras and taking amazing photos. Today we visit local orchards and vineyards to capture the lines of fruit trees and grape vines as they lay dormant over the winter. After lunch at a cellar door we head to Butchers Dam. In the afternoon spend some time exploring the schist stone cottages and miners huts in the Clyde area, before a meal in one of the excellent local restaurants.
Day 3 Clyde – Wedderburn
Today we travel through the Manuherikia Valley, stopping off at several villages including Ophir, Drybread and Becks along the way to St Bathan’s. At St Bathan’s enjoy a hearty lunch in the famous Vulcan Hotel followed by time exploring the Blue Lake and village buildings and ruins. After our time at St Bathan’s we head along some rural back roads offering amazing views of the Hawkdun Range, made famous by prominent local artist Grahame Sydney. The Falls Dam also offers some great photo opportunities. We then head to our accommodation at the Wedderburn Cottages a short distance away.
Day 4 Wedderburn
Today we explore the Maniototo Plains area with a trip down the White Sow Valley to Patearoa. There are many stone fences, historic shearing sheds and ruins along the way with mountain views in every direction. We visit Hamiltons Cemetery before enjoying lunch at the Waipiata Pub. And finally we visit Naseby, an historic gold-mining town where they is the option of having a go at ice skating on the outdoor ice rink. Following this we then head back to Wedderburn to our cosy cottages for the evening.
Day 5 Wedderburn – Otago Peninsula
This morning we travel out of Central Otago down the Strath Taieri Valley, stopping off at a sheep station to see some farm activities and farm dogs in action. We then head out to the coast and visit a tiny beach on the rugged south coast. From here we head on the Otago Peninsula. Follow the many boat-shed lined bays around the harbour to the small settlement of Portobello and our accommodation. If the conditions are clear this evening we will head to nearby Hoopers Inlet for a chance to view and photograph the Aurora Australis!
Day 6 Otago Peninsula – Christchurch/Queenstown
After some early morning photos on the harbour, our final destination for the trip is Dunedin City, famous for its Edwardian Baroque style architecture. Take some time walking around the city capturing the vibe. We enjoy a final coffee together and say our goodbyes. You can either stay on in Dunedin, travel back to Christchurch in our bus arriving at around 6pm, or alternatively catch a bus back to Queenstown arriving at around 7:20pm.
What’s included in the tour package?
- 5 nights twinshare accommodation
- 5 evening meals; 4 lunches; 5 breakfasts (indicated by B/L/D in the itinerary)
- the services of a tour leader who provides vehicle support & information
- the services of a photographer who provides technical support & information
- all transport from/to Christchurch
- Goods & Services Tax of 15%
Not included in the tour package:
- lunch on Days 1/6
- wine; beer; espresso coffees
- single accommodation supplement ($350)
- transfers to Queenstown to Clyde on Day 1 ($35 approx)
- transfers from Dunedin to Queenstown on Day 6 ($40 approx)
Our Guiding Team
Customer Service/Tour Leader (Founder and Managing Director)
Hilary is at the helm of 'mission control', and is often the person who answers your call or email, although is now spending more time out and about on tours. After travelling the world for several years and working in tourism on her big 'OE', Hilary came home and fell in love with NZ once again and in particular, the South Island. With a love of the outdoors and marketing background she teamed up with her mother to form 'PureTrails'. Hilary enjoys photography, cycling, walking, gardening, and being a mum to Josie & Sullivan.
Georgia moved to Middlemarch from Darfield 3 years ago with her partner Tom and their 15 dogs and fell in love with the Otago life! They live on a sheep and beef farm where Georgia works part time, and is now pursuing her photography business the rest of her time. Georgia has been doing photography for about 6 years now and enjoys how it takes her to so many places she would never go to if she didn’t have a camera around her neck. Georgia can't wait to meet everyone and be able to share her knowledge helping you get your own amazing photos in Otago you can brag about to everyone!