South Westland and Its Little Gems – Okarito


Okarito lagoon and snow capped mountains south westland

If you mention South Westland most people think of glaciers – Franz Josef and Fox Glacier. These are great icons of the West Coast particularly of South Westland but there is so much more to offer in this beautiful part of the country.

Stephen and I are just back from a long weekend staying at Franz Josef. Our good friends Bernie and Gerard run Holly Homestead B&B located just on the outskirts of the village itself.  Beautifully restored homestead and a great time to visit – both for us and them as it is a quiet time for both of us during the winter. Shame really as winter on the West Coast is when we get some of our best weather and this weekend was no exception.  While the rest of the country was getting hammered with a severe snow storm and extremely high winds most of the West Coast was basking in glorious sunshine.

boat shed on Okarito Lagoon with winter reflections

Boatshed Okarito Lagoon

Afternoon of Day 1 we headed out to the little seaside village of Okarito.  12kms from the main State Highway back out to the sea.  Often if there is cloud looming over the mountains, it can be lovely and sunny out at Okarito. Today was one of those days. Quite a bit of wind inland too but not at Okarito – very still and giving great reflections. The boys enjoyed a run on the beach and Stephen managed to capture some great photos as the sun disappeared for the day. I love Okarito with the lagoon and old boatshed.

historic school house Okarito

Quite a bit of history here too but now just a sleepy little seaside village. Very peaceful and surrounded by such beauty – snow-capped mountains, lush rain forest and the might of the Tasman Sea.

Reflections through window boatshed Okarito lagoon

Okarito – it is good to be back.

Jan and Stephen run Breakers Boutique Accommodation on the Great Coast Road – north of Greymouth, Northern West Coast.  They love to get out and explore and enjoy sharing their discoveries.  Follow their blog or check out their activities page of Breakers website for more ideas on things to see and do when you visit the West Coast of the Southern Alps.

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About coastingnz

Jan and Stephen live on the Punakaiki coastline, north of Greymouth on the West Coast, NZ and run Breakers Boutique Accommodation. They both enjoy the outdoors and are passionate about things to see and do on the West Coast and would like to share their experiences with you.
This entry was posted in Mountain biking New Zealand, Nature, NZ flora and fauna, outdoors, photography, Travel and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

23 Responses to South Westland and Its Little Gems – Okarito

  1. bulldog says:

    These photos are just out of this world… they have that look of professionalism about them… what perfect light and surroundings for the photos too… the first photo is just beyond me… I have no words to say how beautiful that capture is… looks like something out of a travel magazine that some pro has taken… oh Wow wow wow…
    With photos like that, I look forward to the photos of the glaciers… now don’t tell me you didn’t take any…
    This is just a brilliant,, what photos… I’m going to reblog this…

    • coastingnz says:

      Thank you so much for your very kind words. We are stoked at Stephen is finally getting some recognition for his photography through our local Tourism organisation and some of the local operators asking for his photos too which is great. For years I’ve been telling him how good he is but is just coming to terms with it himself now finally!

  2. bulldog says:

    Reblogged this on The Photographic Journey of bulldog. and commented:
    This is another Southern hemisphere piece of heaven, just look at these photos, they are beyond brilliant.. Now if the New Zealanders could just learn to play rugby… LOL

  3. bulldog says:

    I have to comment again… I mentioned the first photo… I have now clicked on them all to enlarge them… they are all magnificent.. the second one should be framed… brilliant…

  4. Incredible!! Truly beautiful photos.

  5. I always love reflection shots, as I have mentioned before. The log cabin window reflection shot is beautiful… especially give the contrast. –Curt

  6. findingmyinnercourage says:

    Absolutely stunning photography!

  7. adinparadise says:

    These are all really fabulous. What a beautiful place.

    • coastingnz says:

      Thanks. Yes it is a beautiful place – so much contrast of scenery for such a small little village – mountains, lagoon, beach, birdlife – even home to Kiwis.

  8. Stunning , beautiful seaside images. A very serene village where one can makes lots of dreams and reflections.

  9. sixpuns says:

    I love the contrast in the photos here

  10. viveka says:

    Breathtaking photos …. never been in this part of our world … thanks for taking me here. Have to check out my room now. *smile

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