Crossing Cook Strait

From Wellington on the North Island, we took a ferry across Cook Strait to Picton, on the South Island. There are two companies that provide transit across Cook Strait: Interislander and Blueridge. We booked on Interislander based on sailing times and availability, but you can select based on ship as well.

We had read that the trip, though beautiful, can be pretty challenging for landlubbers, especially in the middle section where the ship is unprotected from the winds. Luck was with us once again and we had a spectacular day for our trip. It was still too windy to be on deck (where angled rows of seats were available) during the middle portion of the voyage, but we didn’t feel the ship rock at all during the 3 1/2 hour trip.

Even as foot passengers, we had to arrive more than 45 minutes ahead to check our baggage. (Passengers are asked to bring only a small bag onboard.) Loading the ferry (and unloading) was done in stages and was well organized, but takes quite a bit of time.

Other than the few details noted, this post is all about the scenery, so on with the photos.


We booked online 10 days ahead of our sailing. Unlike many places, the 60+ discount wasn’t reserved for New Zealanders, so we (both–my first!) managed a bit of a discount. With the discount and credit card fee of $2 we paid $108 NZD ($92 CAD) for two (ulp) seniors.

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