New Zealand Slope Point

© Phillip Richter Getty Images/iStockphoto

South Island’s true southerly point lies not in Bluff, as many mistakenly believe, but at the end of a 20-minute trudge through a windswept cliff-side sheep paddock. A humble signpost marks this spectacular spot where blackened rocks tumble into turquoise sea while waves smash and swirl below.

Trees

Local sheep farmers planted small groves of hardy trees here to protect their livestock from the weather. Today the photogenic trees are one of the main visitor draws. The wind has moulded these stands into twisted sculptural formations.   

Slope Point trees in New Zealand
A stand of hardy weather-beaten trees at Slope Point on New Zealand's South Island © Lukas Bischoff Getty Images/iStockphoto

Weather

The weather buffeting this point has travelled 3200kms over the Southern Ocean causing consistently strong winds year-round. You know you're pretty much at the bottom tip of the world when you're standing here looking out over the ocean towards Antarctica. 

Accommodation

The nearest accommodation is on a working farm in the Catlins, with self-contained options for different budgets, and the opportunity to recharge your electric vehicle if needed.

How to find Slope Point

Signs south from Haldane point the way. From the car park, walk towards the sea and veer left along the fencing. The car park at the start of the track is 4km south of Slope Point Accommodation. Be aware: there is no public access across the farmlands during lambing season.