Tourism & Events

Destination Development

By developing our destination in a well managed way we create unforgettable experiences for visitors while benefiting residents, businesses and the environment.

Hump Ridge Track Southland New Zealand Credit Pink Penguin Studio 3 1

Through our focus on destination development we work in a collaborative way to plan for the sustainable growth of our visitor economy while developing a destination which offers a welcoming, connected, and memorable experience for visitors.


Murihiku Southland
Destination Strategy

The Murihiku Southland Destination Strategy 2023-2029 is our guiding document and pathway forward for the development of our regional tourism sector. The Strategy echoes the priorities and perspectives of our communities and mana whenua and it has been developed in close consultation with key stakeholders. It outlines our vision for Murihiku Southland and key projects that seek to deliver economic, cultural, social and environmental benefits for our people, while protecting and preserving our place.

Stewart Island Southland New Zealand Credit Air New Zealand 29


Within its identified projects, the Murihiku Southland Destination Strategy recommended key opportunity areas which would benefit from further investigation. These focus on destinations and visitation pillars, that would add to the attractiveness of our region should further development be undertaken. Each of these investigations and strategies have been developed in a collaborative way alongside our communities and key stakeholders. While their development has been led by Great South, it will take the combined effort of many to implement the recommendations they contain and the level to which this can be done will be dependent on resources available.

Bluff sign Southland New Zealand Credit Great South 81

Bluff Motupōhue
Tourism Master Plan

Motupōhue Bluff has the potential to become a significant visitor destination. To plan for this and ensure future development is undertaken in a collaborative and coordinated way, the Bluff Motupōhue 2020 Tourism Master Plan was created. Facilitated by Great South alongside Awarua Rūnaka, Invercargill City Council and the Bluff Community Board, the plan identifies 11 overall hubs or precincts and a more specific list of 24 transformational concepts, projects, and staging. Each of these concepts, projects and stages will collaboratively transform and revitalise Motupōhue Bluff to make it a more attractive place to live, work, play, visit, and invest in.

Oyster Cove Southland New Zealand Credit Great South 3

Southland Murihiku
Food Tourism Strategy

The Southland Murihiku Food Tourism Strategy was developed in response to the region’s desire to become a key food tourism destination. Murihiku Southland has an abundance of food production and a strong reputation for the quality of its ingredients, but little ready-to-market food tourism product currently exists. The Strategy sets out a five-year plan to achieve its vision, that Murihiku Southland is a world-class, nationally competitive food tourism destination, supported by a thriving, innovative and connected local food network. 

The Beyond 2025 Southland Regional Long Term Plan also recommends the development of our regional ‘Provenance Story’ to enhance the value of our food products within both domestic and international markets.

Around The Mountains Cycle Trail Mossburn Southland New Zealand Credit Great South 2 1

Murihiku Southland
Cycle Tourism Opportunity Assessment

Cycle tourism has experienced significant growth in recent years, appealing to a wide range of both national and international visitors. The development and use of cycle trails has the potential to bring strong economic benefit, support the health and wellbeing of our local communities, and provide low emission options for visitors. 

Murihiku Southland is currently home to one of Aotearoa New Zealand’s 23 Ngā Haerenga Great Rides, Around the Mountains Cycle Trail, and has several other significant trails – the Lake2Lake Trail in Te Rua-o-Te-Moko Fiordland, Te Ara Taurapa from Waihōpai Invercargill to Motupōhue Bluff, and various other mountain biking trails. However, opportunity for further development exists particularly in the creation of multi-day trail options and supporting infrastructure.