Central Otago is a great area. There are hiking trails. There are biking trails. There are rivers and stream and fishing. The towns are small. The rest is farms and vineyards. The weather is better than the rest of the island. This a place we could grow roots.
The vineyard of Weaver Estate Wines is located on Highway 8, between the towns of Alexandra and Clyde. On this 3.5 hectare, working winery are two cottages. We stayed in one of them for three nights.
We were pleasantly surprised when we arrived at the Weaver Estate Vineyards Cottages and saw our cottage. Everything exceeded our expectations. We changed our booking from one to three nights.
The cottages are close together and share a two-car, covered parking area; but they are canted from each other to afford privacy. We never had noise from our neighbors.
Each cottage is a two-bedroom, one bathroom house with a living room and complete kitchen. Each has an oven, stove top, microwave, refrigerator, dishwasher, clothes washer, shower, toilet, a heating and air conditioning unit, and a large front porch. The dishes and cooking implements are minimal, but sufficient. We took advantage of this, and prepared all but one meal. There is a large grocery store in the nearby town of Alexandra.
The cottages are so large and nice, and the surrounding vineyard so soothing, that we could stay here for an extended period. Add to that fishing in the nearby Clutha River, local hiking and cycling tracks, and the Otago Central Rail Trail…well, add all that and you have a winner.
On top of all this, we had no bugs. We left the windows open at night, and had not one mosquito or black fly. This is the only place we went on New Zealand’s south Island where that was the case.
Of course, it can’t be all sunshine and lolly pops, and we found three areas for improvement. First, the sheets were pretty scratchy, easily solved by a higher thread count. Second, we prefer a full sofa to a love seat — we like lay-down cuddling. Finally, the shower head produces an uncomfortably high water pressure.
But these are relatively minor things. The bottom line is that this is a good place to stay.
And how much does it cost? We paid NZ $220 a night. That is a competitive price for decent accommodations on New Zealand’s south island. Compare that with what we paid at five-star accommodations in Christchurch and Queenstown, where we got less quality and less enjoyment, and the Weaver Estate Vineyard Cottages are a superior value.