1. Get the adrenaline buzz
There is no better place and time to take the plunge out of your comfort zone. With three different bungy jumps – including New Zealand’s highest – plus canyon swings, flying foxes, and one of the world’s most scenic paragliding and skydiving drop zones, Queenstown will sate the cravings of the first-timer and adrenaline junkie alike.
2. Tour the sights on two wheels
An extensive network of peaceful cycle paths, the Queenstown Trail is a great way to immerse yourself in the region’s renowned landscapes while taking in many of its major sights. Six themed trails – linking Queenstown, Arrowtown and the wine-soaked Gibbston Valley – offer almost endless options for exploration with guided rides and shuttles easy to arrange.
3. See blue skies from on high
Queenstown’s must-do, the Skyline Gondola sweeps up to iconic Bob’s Peak, 500 metres above town. Staggering lake and mountain views are just the first course in a feast of al fresco adventure that includes the outrageously fun luge, world-class mountain bike trails, park, and tandem paragliding flights through beautiful blue skies.
4. Take a day hike
With the snow out of the way, visitors can explore mountain high and valley low on a series of walking trails throughout world-famous Middle-earth landscapes. Queenstown is a popular base for the region’s Great Walks and other multi-day wilderness adventures, but there are also countless short options for day walks ranging from lakeside strolls to strenuous climbs such as the hikes up Ben Lomond and Queenstown Hill.
The region’s high country farms, lakeland and river valleys are an unforgettable backdrop for horse trekking adventures
5. Go jet boating
Lake Wakatipu and three spectacular rivers – the Shotover, Kawarau and Dart – are the setting of some of the world’s most exciting jet boat rides. Buckle up and hang on for hair-raising spins through narrow canyons, or soak up Southern Alps scenery on a slower-paced safari. Take trips to the next level by combining them with a helicopter trip or 4WD tour.
6. Head out on a horse trek
The region’s high country farms, lakeland, and World Heritage river valleys are an unforgettable backdrop for horse trekking adventures close to Queenstown. Riders of all levels are catered for on various trips, run by experienced guides and enhanced by the stories of the region’s natural and human past.
7. Go whitewater rafting
Embark on a rafting trip to get up close and personal with two of New Zealand’s most famous rivers, both of which boast lofty rocky canyons and beautiful mountain scenery. Conquer the Shotover’s grade 3–5 drops and shoots in historic Skippers Canyon, or cruise the more playful, grade 2–3 Kawarau finishing with the Dog Leg, one of the longest rapids in the country.
8. Discover legendary nightlife
Sleep in then stay up late to maximise Queenstown’s lively vibe that lasts well into the wee hours. The Queenstown nightlife never disappoints. Linger over a sundowner while watching the light fade over the lake. Savour local food and wine in sophisticated restaurants. Head out for live music and dancing in one of many friendly pubs and bars, then round things off with a nightcap. Tomorrow, most likely, will be another long, sunny day…
Queenstown's long summer days are an invitation to pack even more adventures into your must do list!