While in Fiordland, don’t miss out on the beautiful fringe country, where the fertile sheep paddocks of Southland butt up against the remote country of Fiordland National Park. The region’s towns are linked by the underrated, pastoral charms of the Southern Scenic Route (w southernscenicroute.co.nz), a series of small roads where sheep are the primary traffic hazard. From Te Anau it runs via Manapouri to SH99, following the valley of the Waiau River to the cave-pocked limestone country around Clifden. A minor road cuts west to Lake Hauroko, access point for the Dusky Track, while the Southern Scenic Route continues south through the small service town of Tuatapere (the base for hiking the Hump Ridge and South Coast tracks), to estuary-side Riverton and on to Invercargill.
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