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Take the 120km drive one way via State Highway 6 which takes you through the scenic Kawarau Gorge to historic Cromwell, Luggate and then on to Wanaka township.
Once you get there, there’s plenty of fun to be had. In summer the lake is a hive of activity and a great place to sit back soak up the sun and watch the world go by, while in winter you can catch some action up one of the international ski fields located close by.
When it’s time to return to Queenstown, for a change of scenery go via the alternative Crown Range route which takes you over the highest main road in New Zealand.
It’s a shorter trip but you’ll definitely want to stop to look at the views and take a break at the historic Cardrona Hotel.
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