Voted Trip Advisor’s number one outdoor and adventure destination in the world for 2010 and always rating in the top overall destinations, Queenstown is one beautiful playground for all ages and interests.
Nestled on the shores of Lake Wakatipu and surrounded by mountains, the resort’s 18,000 residents share their town with a massive 1.89 million visitors a year. They come to ski (winter), trek, cycle, fish, eat and drink, party, soak up the glorious natural beauty and get their fill of a mind boggling array of 150 adventure pursuits.
The choices are far too many to list but here are 10 of our must dos:
- Bungy jumping – Queenstown is where AJ Hackett introduced commercial bungy jumping to the world and whether you take the plunge or just watch it will set your heart pounding. Anyone over the age of 75 can leap for free (the oldest so far was 94)
- Jet boating and rafting – white water abounds in the rivers feeding the lake creating thrilling terrain for jet boating ( a New Zealand invention) and rafting
- TSS Earnslaw – this great old lady of the lake is the only remaining passenger-carrying coal-fired steamship in the Southern Hemisphere. Taking a cruise on her is a great way to appreciate the lake and surrounding mountains
- Skiing – with two major ski areas within minutes of the town, Queenstown offers some of the most easily accessed skiing in the country. It also boasts unrivalled après ski - look out for the annual Winter Festival which traditionally kicks the season off
- Wine – a relative late comer to wine production, the Queenstown region now has 177 wineries, many with restaurants and cafes attached. Look out for the world renowned Central Otago pinot noir.
- Food – you will never go hungry in Queenstown. The resort has over 150 restaurants ranging from award –winning fine dining to cheap but super delicious lakeside ‘fish ‘n chip’ carts. You can while a way an entire evening in one spot or grab a quick pizza or tapas and move on to one of the bars or nightclubs
- Arrowtown – Born in the gold rush of the 1860’s this historic village gives you a feel for the lives of those drawn to the area by the riches of the Shotover River. You can even try your luck with a bit of gold panning
- Fly fishing – keen fly fishers come here from all over the world to take advantage of the perfect feeding conditions for rainbow trout, brown trout and quinnat salmon
- Golf – with six courses within a 25 minute drive , all with their own splendid scenery, there is something to suit every level of golfer
- Relax – you don’t have to be scaring yourself silly all the time. With scenic gondolas, gentle walks, garden tours, arts trails, spas, some excellent shopping and many, many spots to simply sit and appreciate the scenery, Queenstown can be as relaxing as it is action packed
Air New Zealand flies between Queenstown and Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch linking it with 23 other domestic destinations. Air New Zealand also offers direct flights to Queenstown from Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. For bookings and information visit www.airnewzealand.com