Two earthquakes struck the lower South Island this morning.

Geonet is reporting a strong magnitude 5 quake struck 45km northwest of Haast at about 7.45am and at a depth of 12km.

The quake followed a magnitude 3 shake 5km northwest of Queenstown at 5.42am.

Geonet reported the first earthquake as 13km deep, and described it as "light".