Queenstown Travel Guide

Queenstown would have to be the ultimate mini-break in New Zealand. The ‘adventure capital of the world’ turns it on for winter or summer, with some of the best skiing and snowboarding you’ll ever see, as well as white water rafting, rock climbing, bungy jumping and the Nevis Swing, with its epic 300-metre arc. After all that action, you also have an enticing range of wellness options, such as day spas and hot pools, as well as a dining scene that is a fantastic adventure in its own right. If you’re planning a visit, explore our Queenstown travel guide and find out how to make the most of your time in this amazing South Island destination. We’ve collected the best tips from our travel experts, and have all sorts of suggestions for things to do, the best time to travel, where to stay in Queenstown, getting around and more.

Where to stay

When deciding where to stay in Queenstown, you’ll never be low on choices. However, some of the best holiday experiences are waiting to be enjoyed beyond the town itself. For example, you may prefer to stay in the countryside, closer to the stunning vineyards.  From Arrowtown to the many ski resorts, there’s accommodation in Queenstown and beyond to suit whatever style of getaway you’re after. Whether you want ski slopes on your doorstep or to sleep next door to historical buildings, we can help you find the perfect place to stay.

Things to do

It’s easy to find things to do in Queenstown. As a resort town, the whole place is built to keep you moving from one amazing experience to the next. With so much to see and do on the water, in the hills, in the air and even in the town itself, you’ll have to carefully manage your time if you’re determined to sample everything. To help you see as many Queenstown attractions as possible, here’s a quick overview of this quintessential New Zealand destination.

Getting Around

As this destination is a town rather than a city, Queenstown transport is more than manageable. With convenient and frequent services, combined with relatively short travel distances, you won’t need to stress about planning every detour to the exact minute.  Whether you travel by bus, by bike or on foot, you can quickly get just about anywhere in Queenstown. Plus, the welcoming locals are always happy to give you directions, and taxis are plentiful if you want to take a spontaneous trip to somewhere off the main route.

Where to eat

Queenstown food and drink embodies the high quality you would expect from a resort town. The steady flow of tourist dollars has lured high-profile restaurateurs, hoteliers and chefs, each attempting to outdo the others with incredible food and dining experiences.  If you’re staying in the town proper, you’ll have your pick of everything the area has to offer in the form of cafes, bars, and restaurants. However, don’t forget to venture out of town to enjoy the wonderful wineries of the region.


Queenstown shopping is quite different than it is in other New Zealand cities. As a resort town, there aren’t any particular shopping precincts here. Instead, Queenstown shopping centres are the order of the day, stocking a wide variety of things most visitors will need during their stay. ...

Best time to travel

Weather in Queenstown is a bit on the unpredictable side, which can make planning your itinerary a challenge. The city sits in a very temperate area that is regularly quite cool and prone to frequent snowfall (especially higher up the mountains).  Here’s a handy guide on what to expect from each season so you can have a clearer idea of what to organise prior to arrival. To put it simply, though, you’ll need warm outfits no matter what time of year you visit – particularly if you plan on hitting the slopes!