Lake Tekapo / Mackenzie Basin

Lake Alexandrina and Lake McGregor, MacKenzie Basin

If you’re looking to explore the area around Lake Tekapo, the short drive to Lake Alexandrina is a great option. The road there is very scenic and there are some great views to be had above Lake Alexandrina and Lake McGregor. Keep reading to find out more!

The Scenic Drive to Lake Alexandrina

One of the top reasons to visit Lake Alexandrina and Lake McGregor is the drive. Godly Peak road takes you to the turnoff to Mount John Observatory (drive up there too — awesome views!) and then along a scenic stretch of road with the occasional lake view.

The road to Mount John Observatory, Lake Tekapo, New Zealand

The road to Mount John Observatory

The Peninsula Walkway is in this area — it’s one of the best short walks in the region and is particularly special in winter.

The Peninsula Walkway, Lake Tekapo, New Zealand

If you do this drive in summer (especially late November – late December) you’ll see lupins.. Lupins make for a great foreground for shots of Lake Tekapo.

Lupins in Lake Tekapo, New Zealand

Lake Alexandrina

Lake Alexandrina is home to a small village featuring some cute little baches (holiday homes) and a camping ground. It’s a popular spot in the summer months and is a great option if you want to stay outside of town a bit. My favourite part of our trip was the short walks we found. One takes you along a track next to the lake and seems to go for quite a long way (we only walked for 10 minutes or so).

READ MORE: Check out some of the other things to do in Lake Tekapo 

Lake Alexandrina, Mackenzie Country, New Zealand

For the best views of Lake Alexandrina, you’ll need to walk up the 4WD track near the car park. It’s close to the little bridge and the camping ground (it should be obvious). Once you’re at the top there’s a track with impressive views over Lake Alexandrina, Lake McGregor and Lake Tekapo. This place would be amazing in winter when the mountains and hills would be covered in snow.

The view above Lake Alexandrina, New ZealandView of Lake McGregor and Lake Tekapo, New ZealandView above Lake Alexandrina Village, New Zealand

Another short walk starts off the road heading up through the village. Again, it’s a 4WD track and isn’t marked or named, but the views of Lake McGregor and Lake Tekapo make it worth seeking out.

Stunning view above Lake Tekapo, New Zealand

The village

The little village at Lake Alexandrina doesn’t have any shops, so you’ll need to get supplies in Lake Tekapo. It has a nice waterfront area and it’s good to have a wander along the streets above the lake.

Boats at Lake Alexandrina, New ZealandLake Alexandrina Village, New Zealand

Lake McGregor

Lake McGregor is right next to Lake Alexandrina and also has a camping ground ($10 per person). There’s not a lot else there but the lakeside area is nice enough. The best part about Lake McGregor are the views from above. Another interesting thing to see at Lake McGregor is #thoselakemcgregortrees — partially submerged trees that reminded me a bit of #thatwanakatree, an Instagram superstar of a tree in Lake Wanaka.

READ MORE: The Ultimate South Island Travel Guide (read this if you’re planning on exploring the South Island!)

Lake McGregor, New Zealand

Are you planning a trip to Lake Tekapo and the Mackenzie Country? Check out all my other posts!

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Jon Algie

A travel blogger from New Zealand who has just returned home after 6 years abroad. Join me as I see as much of the South Island as I can.

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