Queenstown aka. the adrenaline capital of the world is home to the bungee jump, a killer bar crawl and some of the most spellbinding scenery I have ever laid eyes on. However, there is a lot more to this town than just jumping off ledges and boozing.
Here are my must do activities to ensure you see more than just the inside of Cowboys bar and your hostel room during your visit.
Cycle around the lake
Lake Wakatipu is definitely one of the most beautiful lakes in New Zealand (and there are a lot of lakes in New Zealand)! It’s opalescent blue waters lined with fluffy fern trees, vibrant Botanic Gardens and the rugged snow-tipped ‘Remarkable’ mountains, offer an area of Queenstown, which is nothing far from breathtaking.
It is easy for a lot of people to stay on one side of the lake (where the town is). However, if you hop over to the other side, you’ll be greeted by isolated pebble beaches, lavish houses with boat jetties and views to die for.
Renting a bike is one of the best ways to explore the many routes around the lake.
I rented a bike for 5 hours ($40) and cycled from the Botanic Gardens all the way round to the golf course towards Jack’s Point on the other side (and back again). I almost flopped sideways into the lake from exhaustion a few times however, it was a great way to kill a hangover and rewarded me with some magnificent views.
If you’re feeling brave, you could always cycle to Gibbston Valley winery via beautiful Arrowtown…
Visit the ‘Valley of the Vines’
Around 25km from Queenstown you’ll find Gibbston Valley vineyard aka. the ‘Valley of the Vines’.
You can either book yourself onto a tour (you can find some great deals online), which tend to include bike hire and transport to and from the town to the vineyard or, if you’re a bit more of an exercise enthusiast and want to really work for your wine, you can cycle to the vineyard via the Gibbston Valley cycle route.
Gondola and luging
Bobbing up towards Bob’s Peak you’ll find Queenstown’s gondola. Floating you all the way up to the start of the famous luge track, the gondola opens up one of the best, postcard perfect views of the city. An almost birds eye view of the emerald lake with vibrant dots of paragliders and brave bungee jumpers, it is a fab spot to drive like a maniac down the side of the mountain in a little metal cart (luging).
Although it’s pretty pricey ($55 for the gondola and 5 luge rides), taking the trip up to the gondola and luging is, in my opinion, an unmissable activity in Queenstown.
Dotted throughout the forest alongside the lake you’ll find the unique playing field for frisbee golf. A game, which consists of aiming your frisbee into a small chain basket, this game is definitely worth giving a go even if it’s just for the lols.
Frisbees can be rented from most sports shops in town.
The Ben Lomond walk is not for the faint hearted nevertheless, if you’re up for the challenge you’ll be rewarded with awe-inspiring, panoramic views of the lake. If you want a slightly less terrifying hike, attempt the Queenstown Hill Time Walk.
Fergburger. Fergbaker. Mrs Ferg Gelato. I probably spent more money in these establishments than in the neighbouring bars. Fergburger is worldwide famous for its burgers and the bakery and ice cream shops next door are just additional mouth-watering surprises. If you don’t get something from each of these shops at least once during your stay – shame on you…