Pelorus Bridge

A peaky pocket of deep, green forest tucked between paddocks of bog-standard pasture, 18km west of Havelock, this scenic reserve contains one of the last stands of river-flat forest in Marlborough. It survived only because a town planned in 1865 didn’t get off the ground by 1912, by which time obliterative logging made this little remnant look precious. Visitors can explore its many tracks, admire the historic bridge, take a dip in the limpid Pelorus River (alluring enough to star in Peter Jackson's The Hobbit), and partake in some home baking at the cafe. The fortunate few can stay overnight in DOC's small but perfectly formed Pelorus Bridge Campground, with its snazzy facilities building. Come sundown keep an eye out for long-tailed bats – the reserve is home to one of the last remaining populations in Marlborough.