South Island residents have shared harrowing photos of smoke from Australia's bushfires blanketing their region.

People from Wanaka and Queenstown have shared their concerns after spotting smoke in their area.

The normal crisp view to Wanaka from the mountains was affected by smoke from Aussie bushfires today 😢

Posted by Jools MacKnight on Monday, 27 January 2020

The smoke comes as a heatwave spreading across Australia is expected to reach extreme levels this week, along with strong winds.

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"Warm, dry and windy weather is forecast for today. There is a very high fire danger, particularly in the central and south-east of the state," the New South Wales (NSW) Rural Fire Service (RFS) said on Twitter.

"Worsening conditions are forecast for later [in] the week so prepare now."

According to, Australia's heatwave would have an impact on New Zealand by the end of the week.

Parts of inland New Zealand could hit 37C in coming days and northwest winds could push that heat directly to New Zealand, warming many parts of the country.

Since September, Australia has been battling bushfires that have killed 33 people and about 1 billion native animals, while 2500 homes and an area the size of Greece have been destroyed.