Time 2 Go Queenstown Region

The first people to discover Queenstown's rare beauty were Maori pounamu (jade) hunters. Then came the gold miners, in search of another kind of treasure.

Today Queenstown is treasured for its magnificent scenery, adventure opportunities and luxury lifestyle.


Long summer days blonde the tussocks, throwing the hills open to mountain bikers and hikers. The brilliant reds and golds of autumn colour the trees, inspiring photographers and golfers alike. In winter, snow transforms the region into a remarkable alpine playground for skiers and snowboarders. Spring brings the spark of fresh green to the landscape - a time to celebrate life with a cruise on the lake or an invigorating bungy jump.

In any season, you can count on stylish accommodation, designer shopping and marvellous cuisine experiences. Queenstown's compact downtown area is a cosmopolitan hub that's relaxed during the day and huge fun at night.

* Queenstown Airport welcomes daily flights from Auckland, Wellington & Christchurch and several flights each week to/from Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.

* The downtown area of Queenstown covers less than 2 square kilometres. Mot shops and restaurants are within easy walking distance.

* You won’t need a suit or tie in Queenstown. But be ready with warm clothing - mountain weather can change quickly.


The resort town of Queenstown is sophisticated and fantastically scenic. Its lake and mountain landscape is suited to almost any kind of adventure; but Queenstown is just as well known as a place for indulgence. The area’s history is intertwined with gold. In 1862, two sheep shearers struck it rich at the edge of the Shotover River. The ensuing gold rush town was named Queenstown because '...it was fit for Queen Victoria'.

One of the most picturesque settlements in New Zealand, Arrowtown sits alongside the Arrow River – once the scene of a frantic gold rush. The town retains its historic character – there are more than 60 restored buildings from the 19th century. The gold days are long over (although you can still pan for gold in the river with some success), so Arrowtown's focus is on hosting visitors.

The rustic town of Glenorchy, at the western end of Lake Wakatipu, is set against a background of native beech forest and towering snow-capped mountains. It is known as the gateway to the Routeburn, Caples, Greenstone, Rees and Dart Valley walking tracks. It’s also the place to organise jet boating and kayaking on the Dart River. Call into the Department of Conservation Visitor Centre if you plan to walk any of the tracks. Horse trekking in the area comes highly recommended.


Once in Queenstown, getting around is easy. If you've arrived at the airport you can catch a bus or minivan to town for just a few dollars. Tell the minivan driver where you're headed and he's likely to obligingly drop you at the door. The bus has prescribed stops throughout the town. A taxi is slightly quicker but more expensive.

The town is compact. If your accommodation is close, you can generally walk anywhere you want to go.

If independence is important and you plan to visit outlying towns such as Glenorchy or Arrowtown, a rental vehicle is the best option.

The town's bus service operates regular shuttles to and from the airport, between the shopping precincts of Queenstown and Frankton’s Remarkables Park and into suburban areas. There are also bus services linking Arrowtown, Glenorchy and Wanaka with Queenstown.

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