• Luke Peterson | #itsTime2Go!

Queenstown | The best things to see and do 👀 👍

Updated: 4 days ago

No matter who you are, there is no shortage of things to do in the Queenstown region of New Zealand's South Island. This alpine playground is one of our busiest tourist spots and for good reason with a huge variety of amazing things to experience. To give you a taste of what to expect from your visit to Queenstown, here's an overview of great itinerary ideas I've collated for you.

Set on the shores of crystal clear Lake Wakatipu and surrounded by majestic mountains, the natural beauty and the unique energy of New Zealand's Queenstown region creates the perfect backdrop for a trip full of adventure, exploration or relaxation. Highlights can include:

  • a fun way to get your bearings when you first arrive in Queenstown, is with Segway on Q where you'll get used to the unique motion of a segway

  • take the opportunity to explore Glenorchy with Dart Stables with a memorable guided horse riding trek catering to all abilities 🐴

  • charming Arrowtown is nestled below beautiful peaks surrounding the sparkling Arrow River with quaint character, boutique shops and restaurants 📸

  • encounter breathtaking scenery, learn about the unique flora, fauna and history of The Routeburn Track with Ultimate Hikes on a day walk 👟🏞️

  • one of the best scenic drives in New Zealand 🚗 the Tommy Thomson Scenic Drive runs along the edge of Lake Wakatipu between Queenstown and Glenorchy 📸

  • anyone can explore the regions spectacular cycle trails with Charge About - their electric bikes are simple to ride and addictive fun 🚴

  • get your heart pumping and adrenaline rushing when you launch from the Shotover Canyon Swing and Shotover Canyon Fox

  • a walking and hiking paradise best explored on foot - we'll share with you our favourite Wakatipu Walks including Ben LomondBob's CoveMoke LakeMount Crichton Loop and more 👟🏞️

  • fun and spine-tingling suspense awaits you at the Fear Factory, New Zealand's Scariest Haunted House - are you brave enough? 😱

  • relax and unwind at Body Sanctum Day Spa with a variety of luxurious treatments and massage options available 💆

  • kayak to a secluded island and explore a wildlife reserve with Rippled Earth Kayaking or Lake Wakatipu with Paddle Queenstown 🛶

  • try something new or hone your skills at Break One, a clay target shooting experience set amidst stunning landscape 🎯

  • AJ Hackett Bungy offers the original home of bungy jumping off the edge of Kawarau Bridge, but also the highest in New Zealand the Nevis and one of the most picturesque, The Ledge and new experience, the Catapult which propels you like a human slingshot

  • Kiwi Birdlife Park displays over 20 species of native wildlife in 5 acres of parkland and a great place to spot meet a kiwi 🐾👨‍👩‍👧‍👦

  • see the surrounding landscape aboard the iconic century-old coal fired steamship, the TSS Earnslaw across Lake Wakatipu ⚓enjoy a farmyard tour and see sheep shearing before enjoying lakeside dining at Walter Peak away from the bustle of Queenstown 🐑🍽️

  • known for pinot noir Gibbston Valley is one of the most scenic wine growing areas you'll ever encounter also known for delicious cheese 🧀🍷

  • combine the Wilderness Jet Boat experience with a leisurely downstream float on Funyaks (inflatable kayaks/canoes) with Dart River Safaris 🛶

  • skim across the water, whizz round corners and shoot through narrow rocky gorges aboard a world famous Queenstown Jet Boat

  • dive under the water and leap into the air on a unique high speed thrill ride, the Hydro Attack, the world's first tour operator of the Seabreacher X shark 🦈

  • reflecting the earthy tones of the landscape, and the mountains of the Wakatipu Basin, Lake Hayes provides picture perfection 📸

  • enjoy the thrills of an off road adventure packed with breathtaking scenery, thrilling 4WD action and filming locations with Nomad Safaris 

  • engulfed in iconic scenery Skydive Southern Alps offer adrenalin seekers a tandem skydive experience of a lifetime at a brilliant price

  • abseil, slide down waterfalls, jump into pools & zip line across canyons with Canyoning Queenstown, the original canyoning experience in the region

  • treat yourself to Onsen Hot Pools, an idyllic private cedar-lined hot pool experience overlooking the Shotover River ♨️

  • visit Lord of the Rings filming locations and share your guides passion as you take a journey deep into Middle Earth with Pure Glenorchy 🎥

  • experience the thrill of landing on snow and glaciers within the alpine ranges with Glacier Southern Lakes scenic helicopter flights 🚁

  • soar majestically through the skies like an eagle, surrounded by breathtaking mountain views Tandem Paragliding and Hang Gliding

  • from July to September Coronet Peak offers awe-inspiring views, expertly groomed trails, sophisticated facilities and night skiing ❄️⛷️

  • The Remarkables mountain range, is also home to a ski resort perfect for beginners, and freestylers, and a welcome backdrop to any photo at any time of year ❄️🏂

  • take in the stunning views as you ride the Skyline Queenstown Gondola to the heights of Bob's Peak, before taking the driving seat with the gravity -fuelled Luge, a thrill ride for all ages, and promising plenty of family fun 👨‍👩‍👧‍👦

  • test your sense of adventure with a white water rafting experience on the Shotover River or Kawarau River, or enjoy a scenic family raft 🌊

  • home of river surfing, go riverboarding in grade 2 to 3 rapids on sledges built for an exciting, thrilling and proactive adventure 🌊

  • conquer exhilarating terrain with steep mountain climbs, creek crossings and beautiful forest tracks leading to stunning viewpoints with Off Road Adventures Quad Bike and Dirt Bike Tours 

  • give your eyes a break, and focus on the taste buds at The Remarkable Sweet Shop - a paradise for candy lovers 🍭🍬

  • harness up and feel the wind in your face as you zip down breathtaking ziplines traversing down the mountain tree to tree with Ziptrek Ecotours

  • experience the rush of 100% pure human flight at iFLY, New Zealand's only indoor skydiving attraction

QUEENSTOWN AT A GLANCE 🛏️ minimum 3 night stay recommended 📅 visit any time of year

📍 8 out of 10 visitors include Queenstown in their New Zealand itinerary

🌦️there is a chance of rain 3 days each week on average each year

👨‍👩‍👦‍👦Family fun scores high here with plenty to keep children entertained 🍽️Food + Wine experiences in this region were almost always mentioned as a highlight 🏳️‍🌈 LGBTQI+ friendly 👍


This part of New Zealand is home to:

Largest town:  Queenstown

Popular places:  Arrowtown, Glenorchy, Lake Hayes, Coronet Peak, The Remarkables, Gibbston Valley, Frankton, Kelvin Heights, Kingston, Paradise, Kinloch, Fernhill, Sunshine Bay, Arthurs Point, Jacks Point, Bob's Cove, Wilson Bay and more...


Accessible by:

🚗 self-drive on a road trip

✈️ board a plane to land at Queenstown's Airport in Frankton (ZQN)

🚌 take a bus from Central Otago, Southland, Lake Wanaka, Fiordland, Dunedin, South Canterbury or Glacier Country

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