A charming and compact city, Dunedin is known for its grand Victorian and Edwardian architecture, compelling history of gold rushes, proud Scottish influence and unique wildlife (think the fascinating yellow-eyed penguins). Nestled in Otago Harbour in the South Island, Dunedin was designed to emulate the characteristics of Scotland’s famous Edinburgh. These qualities, fused with the region’s easy-going coastal lifestyle and the spectacular treasures of the Otago Peninsula, make ‘The Edinburgh of the South’ a very fine holiday destination indeed.
Dunedin’s main street, George Street, is where you’ll find plenty of cheap eats from Japanese to Thai, as well as funky cafés, restaurants and fast food joints. Known as ‘The Octagon’, the city centre is an 8-sided plaza and home to Dunedin’s nightlife.
Pull up a stool at one of the many bars, pubs and live music venues for a rollicking night out. The local culinary specialty is kumara chips (sweet potato fries), so if you notice them on the menu be sure to swap the usual French fries for a delicious snack with a Kiwi twist. And, of course, don’t forget to sample the local fish and chips.
To experience Dunedin like a local, hire a car, pack up a picnic and set out to explore the vast, wild and rugged beauty of the Otago Peninsula. Famed for its wildlife reserves and colony of Northern Royal Albatross, this is the best way to experience southern New Zealand in all its spectacular glory. Be sure to visit New Zealand’s only castle, Larnach Castle, on your journey through this striking natural wonderland.