Things to do in Queenstown

Jetboating on the river in New Zealand, Skippers Jet Boat Queenstown

Queenstown is the adventure capital of New Zealand. Queenstown offers a range of activities, from adrenalin pumping to unique food and drink experiences.

Queenstown view across the river, Intro Travel, New Zealand Adventure Tour 


Welcome to “Things to Do in Queenstown” blog! Get ready to discover the most exciting outdoor activities, scenic spots, and local hotspots in Queenstown, New Zealand’s adventure capital.

Tours traveling to Queenstown, New Zealand, allow free days in this lakeside town. There’s simply too much to do here. An overnight stop in Queenstown wouldn’t do it justice. 

Queenstown is a small town located on the south island of New Zealand. Despite its size, it is known as the adventure capital of the world, and for a good reason. With its stunning natural beauty, adrenaline-pumping activities, and vibrant local culture, Queenstown is a must-visit destination for travelers seeking adventure and relaxation.

In this blog, we will explore the best things to do in Queenstown, from bungee jumping and skydiving to hiking and skiing. We will provide you with a comprehensive guide to the town’s top attractions, including the breathtaking Milford Sound, the picturesque Arrowtown, and the stunning Queenstown Gardens. We will also introduce you to the best local restaurants, cafes, and bars, where you can sample the finest New Zealand cuisine and meet friendly locals.

Whether you’re a seasoned adventurer or a first-time traveler, our blog is your ultimate source of information for making the most of your trip to Queenstown. We’ll provide you with insider tips, local knowledge, and recommendations on the best tours, activities, and events to attend. So, get ready to discover the wonders of Queenstown and experience the trip of a lifetime!

Everyone’s taste is a little different when it comes to adventure activities.


Should I visit Queenstown in Winter or Summer?

Winter or summer, Queenstown is a hub for outdoor and adventure activities.

Queenstown is a year-round destination, each season offers its unique charm and experiences.

Winter in Queenstown (June-August) is the peak season for skiing and snowboarding in the Southern Hemisphere. The snow-covered slopes of Coronet Peak, The Remarkables and Cardrona Alpine Resort offer world-class skiing experiences for all levels. During winter, Queenstown transforms into a winter wonderland, with picturesque snow-covered scenery, winter festivals, and events. With many indoor activities and dining options, it is an ideal season for a cozy getaway.

Summer in Queenstown (December-February) is the perfect time for outdoor activities like hiking, mountain biking, fishing, and water sports. With longer days and warmer temperatures, visitors can enjoy the stunning scenery of Lake Wakatipu, the Remarkables mountain range, and nearby national parks. The town offers a variety of summer festivals and outdoor concerts, making it an excellent time to explore the local culture and cuisine.

In conclusion, the best time to visit Queenstown depends on your interests and preferences. If you’re a winter sports enthusiast, you’ll love the snow season, while those who enjoy outdoor activities and scenic nature will prefer the summer. Regardless of the season, Queenstown has something to offer to everyone, and you won’t regret visiting at any time of the year.

Here are some suggestions to fill in two days in Queenstown.

“Winter or summer, Queenstown is a hub for outdoor and adventure activities.”

Real Adventure Group

Things to do in Queenstown

Bungy jump in Queenstown

Queenstown is the home of the Bungy jump.

Good bridges and deep canyons surrounding Queenstown certainly create the natural requirements for those who like to jump off structures with a big rubber band around their legs. Choose from different jump locations and different heights.

Canyon Swing Queenstown

Somewhat easy on paper, but not in execution. You still drop and then start swinging under the bridge across the canyon. Swing single or tandem, even with a rubbish bin on your head.

Paraglide Queenstown

There can’t be too many places in the world where you can ride a gondola up a hill and then fly back to town and land on a rugby field. paragliding in Queenstown lets you do this with licensed and safe instructors.

Jetboats Queenstown

Lots of rivers around Queenstown means lots of different jet boat options:

The more popular are Dart River Safaris, Shotover Jet, Skippers Canyon Jet and Kawerau Jet.

Dart River Safaris – travels up the Dart River near Glenorchy at the head of Lake Wakatipu. Travel up the river valley where some of the Lord of The Rings film trilogy was shot.

Shotover Jet – The classic trip that takes you through the narrow canyon on the Shotover River.

Skippers Canyon Jet – The drive into Skippers Canyon is exciting enough down a narrow dirt road that descends into the canyon. You tear up the river with close shaves to the canyon walls here like the Shotover Jet.

Kawerau Jet – This trip leaves from downtown Queenstown lakefront

Gondola and luge or Ziptrek

Almost from the heart of town, the gondola takes you high above Queenstown for impressive views over the lake, town and surrounding mountains. At the top of the hill is a downhill luge course on a concrete track. While you could take the gondola back down the hill the other option is Ziptrek – be suspended on a zip-line and zig-zag your way down the hill.

Shotover Canyon Queenstown Shotover Canyon Swing New Zealand

Free stuff to do in Queenstown

Welcome to our guide to free things to do in Queenstown. While the town may be known for its thrilling adventures and scenic landscapes,

Bike ride in Queenstown

Ok, not entirely free if you don’t have a bike. But it’s got to be the most cost-effective fun you can have. Queenstown has a great network of purpose-built cycle trails that can take you all over the district. Cycle to Arrowtown or a winery. It’s pretty much flat riding on formed trails. Take your time to get a better appreciation of the countryside.

Lakefront Walk Queenstown

Hang out on the beach downtown. On a hot day everyone is here and it’s warm enough to swim. A great place to watch the sun go down.

Walk up Queenstown Hill
To get away from lake level, there are walks to do right from the heart of town up into the hills. The most accessible of these is the walk up Queenstown Hill behind Queenstown. You walk through the pine forest and then pop out above the tree line for grand views over the lake and town.

Walk up to the top of the Gondola (or if you are really keen to walk up Mt Ben Lomond)
Save some money to get to the view and activities mentioned above. if you are more of a walker and need a bigger challenge, carry on up past the gondola terminus to the summit of Mt Ben Lomond. you will have done 1000+ vertical meters over about 6-8 hours so go prepared with warm clothing, food, and water.

See the trout and eels at the lakefront

Attached to the wharf is an underwater observatory where you can see wild trout and eels. It’s an impressive sight for $5. You can feed them for a few dollars too.

Play frisbee golf in the Queenstown Gardens

The frisbee golf course here was the first of its kind in New Zealand. You walk around the course throwing your frisbee toward the ‘holes’ as you would in golf. The person who takes the least number of throws to get their disc into each of the holes wins.

it’s also a place where you can enjoy some amazing experiences without breaking the bank. From scenic walks and hikes to cultural experiences and local markets, there’s something for everyone to enjoy in Queenstown without spending a dime. We hope our guide has inspired you to explore the town’s many free attractions and activities, from stargazing on a clear night to visiting historic sites and museums. By taking advantage of the free things to do in Queenstown, you’ll not only save money but also get to experience the unique charm and culture of this amazing destination. So, grab your walking shoes, pack a picnic, and get ready to explore the many free wonders of Queenstown.

South Island tours to take you to Queenstown

South Island tours

9 Day South Island Tour

11 Day South Island Tour

We also have tours that start in Queenstown: Tours from Queenstown

Real Kiwi Recommendations

  • Spend a few days in Queenstown to see the best bits.

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