Wairau Diversion Reserve

Wairau Diversion Reserve

Overnight Campervan Parking


56 Rankers Reviews

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Wairau Diversion is a worth a diversion.


Overnight Freedom Camping on the coast at Wairau Diversion Reserve. Great fishing and white-baiting spot. Good surfing too when there's an easterly swell. Self contained vehicles only and maximum stay of 2 nights in any four week period.

NOTE - Marlborough generally gets particularly parched over summer, so please - NO FIRES

The Wairau Diversion area is located on the northern side of the lower reach of the Diversion. It is
accessed from the intersection of Thomas Road and Neal Road.

The area of the Wairau Diversion at the eastern end of the site is a restricted area for responsible camping. The Wairau Diversion Reserve Restricted Area is part of the reserve from the eastern boundary of the prohibited area adjacent to the Hinepango Wetland stretching in an easterly direction to the Wairau Diversion day use area. The area permitting responsible camping has a fence on its eastern boundary between the day use and the camping area.

No person may responsible camp except in the area shown and must be in a certified self-contained

There is clear signage into the area directing campers to the area allocated for camping.

Vehicle numbers are limited to 75 vehicles.


Feature Value Info


South IslandMarlboroughBlenheim


  • Freedom Camping
  • Free


Showing 13 reviews of 56.

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Felix's avatar


Ranking: 8/10

Really nice picturesque spot with heaps of spaces. Great views. Long drop toilets but clean and tidy. Recommend for a stay after getting the night ferry from Wellington.

Reviewed 14 days ago

Shalamar's avatar


Ranking: 8/10

This was another great wee spot close to the sea. Ample of space and shade. You can only camp in a certain area and not beyond the signs as it is a $200 fine. However close walking distance to the toilets. Only con would be the state the toilets were in and one but obviously all good being self contained. Definitely recommend checking it out.

Reviewed about 1 month ago

Tammy & Nigel's avatar

Tammy & Nigel

Ranking: 10/10

Beautiful spot great seeing waitbaiters and fishing. There is a guy who comes around to check so don’t ruin it but disobeying the signs. We sat up by the mouth and drove past the signs to camp after dinner. Amazing sunset and sunrise 😁

Reviewed 2 months ago

Kevin and Dorothy's avatar

Kevin and Dorothy

Ranking: 8/10

Great spot but can get very windy and dusty.
You are supposed to only stay 2 nights however there is a bus there that looks like it has been parked up for months so I don't think anyone goes round to check.

Reviewed 3 months ago

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Shar-ron & Jim 's avatar

Shar-ron & Jim

Ranking: 8/10

Came off Ferry late close to Picton. Easy to find but access was tricky in the dark in a large RV. 4-5 gravel entrance to parking area. Easy in daylight.

Reviewed 4 months ago

Shans's avatar


Ranking: 8/10

Pretty good spot, went in winter so it was relatively quiet. Toilets just a few minutes walk from where you can camp, only downside is that you can't park next to the ocean.

Reviewed 7 months ago

Gini's avatar


Ranking: 8/10

Ist zur Zeit offen. Viel Platz und normale Toiletten.

Reviewed 10 months ago

Cody's avatar


Ranking: 9/10

Large open area, feels like disperse camping in the woods and not a car park. Clean pit toilets, no showers or water. It was very windy when we were there so no catch to swim or fish. Also no surf waves at the time.

Reviewed 10 months ago

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Jack Moxon's avatar

Jack Moxon

United Kingdom

Ranking: 9/10

Very large campsite, you should always be able to find a spot. Toilets right at the far end by the mouth of the river as well - no lights and recommend bringing your own toilet paper. No sink, has antibac gel instead. Nice river/beach. You can’t camp by the end near the toilets, $200 fine as signposted. Plenty of trees for shade. Location on map is correct turnoff but actual campsite is further down the gravel path with a vineyard on the left, follow it until you reach the camp by the river mouth. Be careful of the sand as you could get stuck if you drive through it!

Reviewed 11 months ago

Richard & Chris, UK's avatar

Richard & Chris, UK

Ranking: 9/10

Fantastic spot, plenty of space all the way from the road to the beach. The app shows the site right at the junction to the road, but follow the road to the end where everyone else is! Nice beach walks, view from your van over the river. Toilets near the beach.

Reviewed 12 months ago

Salkinnoma's avatar


Ranking: 9/10

Its a good and large camping spot. Its not to far from the picton ferry terminal so its the perfect spot for late/early ferries!

Reviewed about 1 year ago

Mark's avatar


Ranking: 10/10

Great place. Heaps of room. Can get a bit dusty. 15 minutes to Picton. Mobile coverage

Reviewed about 1 year ago

A smith's avatar

A smith

Ranking: 10/10

Great destination to stay for the night. Views in the evening as sun sets is are lovely as well as the morning. Clean and tidy. Just what you expect of a freedom camping spot. Would recommend to anyone getting the ferry early next morning as only a short drive to Picton.

Reviewed about 1 year ago