We recently visited Queenstown and loved every minute! Below is a list of all the incredible activities we managed to squeeze into our 4 days abroad (and highly recommend).
This hike begins from bottom of the Gondola to the top (and on to the Ben Lomand walkway if your heart desires) and takes approximately 1hr with a group. The hike is beautiful and whilst it involves a little rock scramble, it’s very suitable for beginners. When you reach the top, there are a number of activities to do.
For those who aren’t willing to hike up the mountain, you can take the Gondola to the top. If you do hike up, you can also purchase a one-way Gondola ticket back down the mountain.
The luge is essentially a Toboggan on wheels. Lots of fun for young and old. Cheapest option is when tickets are purchased as part of the Gondola Ride. As a group we agreed that 3 rides was the magic number. It allows you to get a turn at each track (there are two) and a third time round on your favourite.
When we made it to the top of the mountain, a few of the girls and myself couldn’t think of a better way to get back down to the bottom. After signing in, you hike for an extra 10 minutes up the mountain (part of the Ben Lomand Walkway) for takeoff. Stunning views with great pilots who made you feel completely safe the entire ride. An extra $50 will get you some photos and video of your experience.
One of the activities we didn’t get to do, however looked like loads of fun. You can opt for a 2.5hr package that takes you back down the mountain via 4 zip lines. Looks like a lot of fun.
Book a late lunch at one of the many wineries 10 minutes from the centre of town. We opted for Amisfield however, we would have loved to have tried more… next time. A late lunch means you get to squeeze more activities into the morning
The team at NZ Wine Tours put on an incredible day for us in Central Otago. We stopped at 5 wineries ranging from large scale operations right through to boutique wineries of the region. Pick-up and drop off is from your accomodation, day starts at around 10am and finishes around 5pm with lunch at Mt Difficulty Wines included.
Shotover Canyon Jet Boating
We booked a group session on the Shotover Canyon Jet Boat. Lots of fun for the adrenalin junkies. Whilst the boat twists and turns around the canyon, the view of the canyon was gorgeous. $135pp.
Shotover Canyon Swing
Not for the faint hearted, the Canyon Swing is essentially a bungee jump that swings from side to side without the up and down motion of the traditional bungee. Only two of the guys opted for this one. Not for the faint hearted 🙂
If you enjoy the snow, or just want to play around on the beginner’s slopes, The Remarkables was lots of fun. If you get a clear day, the views are spectacular and the drive back down was beautiful. Check the Snow Report prior to departing the town in case you need chains. If driving up to the slopes isn’t for you, you can get a bus from in-town.
Friends of ours wanted to check out the Onsen spa however, didn’t realize how busy it would be and missed out. The spa is located within the mountain range, is free from chlorine, with a view that promised to blow you away. Book ahead!
Something we didn’t get to do as it’s a fair way from Queenstown itself, but something that everyone recommends. We were told that if you’re considering driving out there, spend the night in Te Anau and take your time exploring Milford Sound the next day. The other option is to fly out there via helicopter, but it is on the expensive side.
A gorgeous little mining town just outside of Queenstown. Definitely worth a visit if you have the time. I’d recommend exploring the village, stopping over for an early dinner at Saffron and then drinks at The Blue Door 🙂
Have you been to Queenstown? What were your highlights? Share them below.