Many years ago, when we were just a young, university-attending, scungy-flat-dwelling cheap flights website, we used to drink "Blenheimer" wine out of a cask. It wasn't the best tasting alcoholic drink on the market, but it was probably the cheapest, and was definitely the only one you could use to make waterwings for your mum's dog when you were finished with it.
Luckily, the quality of wine from around Blenheim has improved quite substantially over the years, and we're proud to say that now we're all grown up and classy we drink the local sauvignon blanc, and we drink it out of a bottle. Or sometimes out of a wineglass if we can find one.
But Marlborough's not just famous for its wine, it's also famous for the Sounds - long, submerged valleys with massive banks of native bush plunging into dark blue ocean. You can get a good close up look at one of them, Queen Charlotte Sound, by walking the 71km track of the same name. The track is famous for its wildlife - you'll see herons, terns, dolphins, penguins… you may even spot a couple of shags (particularly if there are Germans walking the track).
Aside from wine and tourism, Marlborough's big industry is "aquaculture". No, it's not another weird German thing, it's the farming of delicious treats like mussels, oysters and salmon. Make sure you eat as much as you can while you're in the area - if it helps, think of Marlborough as one big Valentines buffet.
Down the coast in Kaikoura, crayfish is the local specialty. What a cool town - it has sea on one side and snow capped mountains on the other, and did you know that apart from its famous whale watching industry, Kaikoura is the "pelagic seabird capital of New Zealand"? No, we're not sure either, but it sounds awesome.
About 30km back up the coast is local secret the Ohau Waterfall, where - get this - you'll sometimes see seal pups who've swum up the river playing with each underneath the waterfall. It's a bit like the Playboy Mansion, as imagined by a walrus.
For cheap flights to Blenheim use the farefinder below, or visit grabaseat.co.nz the home of cheap airfares to Blenheim.