Cruise Area

The Marlborough Sounds

20% of New Zealand’s Coastline
50Conservation Reserves
4000km2 of nature’s paradise

Sailing in the Marlborough Sounds

The Marlborough Sounds are a popular holiday location and cover some 4,000 square kilometres. The ‘Sounds’ as they are generally called, are world renowned for their beautiful scenery. The Marlborough Sounds is the perfect place to explore, or simply relax. What better way to do that, than by going sailing.

While visiting Marlborough, enjoy this gourmet province from the sea. Visit salmon and mussel farms, or dine at some of the sounds finest restaurants, all from the comfort of Beviamo. We may even be lucky enough to catch some of the local delicacy such as Crayfish or Paua.

On board Beviamo, do what you want to do. Get involved by assisting the skipper or sit back and have it all done for you.

We will explore the numerous beautiful bays and coves throughout the Queen Charlotte Sound.

If you have more time we can take you into the remoteness of the Pelorus Sound, or take a day sail onto the world famous Abel Tasman National Park transiting through the famous French Pass. You will be in awe of the narrow pass and strong swirling currents. An experience you will never forget.


Check out some of the many Queen Charlotte Sound highlights;

  • Tory Channel gateway to Cook Strait
  • Perano Whaling Station  historic site of New Zealand’s last commercial whaling station
  • Ships Cove site of Cook Monument
  • World War 2 Gun Emplacements
  • Motuara Island
  • Waterfall Bay
  • Picton
  • Port Shakespeare
  • Salmon and Green Lip Mussel Farms
  • Queen Charlotte Walkway
  • Cobham Outward Bound School


  1. Wildlife in the Marlborough Sounds

    Dolphins can regularly been seen playing within the waters of the Marlborough Sounds. The area is home to a resident pod of about 20–30 Hector’s dolphin, ‘thought to be the rarest marine dolphin in the world’. Whales are not uncommon with recent sightings of both Orca (Killer whales) and Humpback Whales.

    There is abundant bird life like the small fluttering shearwaters, shags and gannets. You are almost certain to see little blue penguins (korora), which are popular with young and old alike. At the northern entrance of the Sounds lies Motuara Island bird sanctuary.

  2. Queen Charlotte Track

    The Queen Charlotte Walkway Track runs from Ship Cove to Anakiwa. There is a range of walks, catering for all levels of fitness. You can choose to undertake the full walk, which takes 3 to 4 days, or enjoy a shorter day walk. We can drop you ashore at any one of a number of points along the water’s edge within the Queen Charlotte Sound, from where you can join the walkway.

    Beviamo is the perfect luxury base to return to each evening, after a days walk. If a full day is not for you, we can collect you from various points on the track and return you to Beviamo.

  3. Outward Bound

    Outward Bound is based at the western end of the Queen Charlotte Track at Anakiwa. It offers courses designed to inspire personal and social development through value based experiential learning in an outdoor environment. Its sailing boats known as ‘Cutters’ can often be seen sailing within the waters of the Queen Charlotte Sound.

  4. D'Urville Island

    D’Urville Island is a relatively remote with empty, silent harbours ringed by isolated farms with a combination of native and regenerating bush. The coastline is wild and open to the extremes of Cook Strait.

  5. French Pass

    The water races through this narrow pass at up to eight knots. This strong current creates truly awesome whirlpools, eddies and currents which have been feared and respected by mariners for centuries. In 1827 French seafarer Dumont D’Urville spent several days investigating the passage before venturing through it. D’Urville described the sea as “a seething sheet where great precaution needed to be taken”. Whilst passing through he clipped the reef twice before ‘floating majestically’ into Admiralty Bay.

  6. Abel Tasman National Park

    Tasman Bay is approximately 30 miles wide bounded by D’Urville Island to the East, Nelson to the South, Motueka and Abel Tasman National Park to the West.

    Tasman Bay has its own microclimate providing ideal boating all year round.

    This area is renowned for its golden beaches, beautiful bays, and its world-famous walkway. Enjoy this marine playground, its beautiful beaches, bush tracks and superb marine life. Following time ashore, return to Beviamo for that well deserved hot shower, food and beverage, then off to bed to enjoy the tranquil lap of water on the hull.