The Lake Hayes whopper

The walk around Lake Hayes is a beauty because of the water’s mirror like qualities on a still day. Which is why you’re going to destroy the serenity by hurling yourself screaming into the lake at the apex of a gigantic rope swing.

Park by the Lake Hayes Pavilion and turn left along the Lake Hayes Walkway to find the swing. The builders have thoughtfully nailed a launch platform to the side of a willow tree, so you can get some serious air.

Arrow River swimming holes

Generations of local kids have grown up leaping into the Arrow River’s crystal clear swimming holes from rope swings hanging from the surrounding trees.

Famous for its beauty, its gold, and, more recently, the scene from Lord of The Rings where Arwen challenges the riders of the Nazgûl, the Arrow River is the perfect spot for a shady summer stroll, complete with swim, swing and a picnic.

Queenstown Garden playground favourite

On the edge of The Queenstown Gardens by the Bathhouse Restaurant, a rope swing crosses a small stream into Lake Wakatipu.

The swing is right next to a new playground with climbing nets, slides, seesaws, and a fantastic wooden obstacle course that zigzags among the trees.

This is a perfect spot for parents looking for a place to sip a coffee in peace while the kids play. You’re right on the beach, and the kids have the rope swing, the playground, grand old willow trees to climb, and the lake to paddle in.

The Steamer Wharf screamer

Hidden away between Steamer Wharf and St Omer Wharf is a favourite local rope swing. Located close to many restaurants and bars, you can relax with a meal or drink, while the kids entertain themselves within arm’s reach. 

If you’re feeling energetic you can use the swing to launch yourself into the lake for a refreshing dip. Just try not to scream too loud when you hit the freezing water.

The walk to Kelvin Heights

Start in Frankton and cross over the Kawarau Bridge for an easy walk around the Kelvin Peninsula towards the Kelvin Heights golf course.

The well-maintained track takes you along the lakefront where a rope swing hangs from a willow tree by a picturesque jetty.