Few towns in the world - if any - have so dramatic a setting as Queenstown, on the shores of Lake Wakatipu and backed by the constantly dramatic ‘Remarkables’ Mountains.
With a colourful history of Maori pounamu (jade) hunting and gold mining, Queenstown has always drawn on its surrounding landscapes to attract visitors and residents alike.
More recently it has proudly proclaimed itself the ‘adventure capital of the world’ and it’s hard to argue with this due to the sheer number of high adrenaline adventures available amongst the surrounding Southern Alps. While any trip to Queenstown should involve some form of outdoor adventure, there is every opportunity to witness the mountains first-hand without being suspended from a bungy cord.
Many visitors find it is quite enough to simply relax and drink in the ‘once in a lifetime’ scenery from one of the cafés on the lakeshore.
From Maori pounamu hunters to European gold prospectors, Queenstown has always been attractive for those in pursuit of bounty. Now this beautiful outdoor playground appeals to people seeking adventure and excitement, with a wealth of activities including mountain biking, bungy jumping, sky diving, hang-gliding, jet boating - the opportunities are endless.
Queenstown hosts a wealth of sporting events and festivals, of note the New Zealand Open golf championships and a selection of international skiing competitions. For those who prefer a more sedate pace there is still plenty of choice, from golfing and fishing to hiking and riding.
Regardless of how you choose to spend it, every day closes the same way, with the sight of the sun setting over the lake, casting a tincture of red across the Remarkables.
Nomad Safaris are the local experts for getting you out and about in some of Queenstown’s most inaccessible scenery. With roads such as Skippers Canyon being closed to rental vehicles, this is the best way to explore the Queenstown back country.
Much of the landscape was used in the filming of the ‘Lord of the Rings’ trilogy, and there is also a wealth of gold-mining history in the area, putting a historical spin on an exhilarating experience. Nomad operate with the approval of the Department of Conservation, and are actively involved in the preservation of the historical areas.
Suggested itineraries featuring Queenstown
Our itineraries will give you suggestions for what is possible when you travel in Queenstown, and they showcase routes we know work particularly well. Treat them as inspiration, because your trip will be created uniquely by one of our specialists.
Map of Queenstown
Places & hotels on the map
Places near Queenstown
- Arrowtown 11 miles away
- Glenorchy 19 miles away
- Lake Wanaka 33 miles away
- Milford Sound 45 miles away
- Te Anau & Manapouri 54 miles away
- Haast & Lake Moeraki 82 miles away
- Doubtful Sound 85 miles away
- Twizel 89 miles away
- Dunedin 107 miles away
- The Catlins 109 miles away
- The Otago Peninsula 114 miles away
- Mount Cook National Park 115 miles away
- Lake Tekapo 115 miles away
- Fox & Franz Josef Glaciers 128 miles away
- Stewart & Ulva Islands 139 miles away
- Hokitika 197 miles away
- Arthur's Pass National Park 204 miles away
- Christchurch 223 miles away
- Akaroa & Banks Peninsula 229 miles away
- Punakaiki 243 miles away
- Hanmer Springs 271 miles away
Accommodation choices for Queenstown
We’ve selected a range of accommodation options for when you visit Queenstown. Our choices usually come recommended for their character, facilities and service or location. Our specialists always aim to suggest properties that match your preferences.
Ideas for experiencing Queenstown
Our specialists seek out authentic ways to get to know the places that could feature in your trip. These activities reflect some of the experiences they've most enjoyed while visiting Queenstown, and which use the best local guides.