Take a jump
This is where it all started – jumping of a bridge with a giant rubber band tied round your feet. That’s right, AJ Hackett’s Kawarau Bungy Bridge www.bungy.co.nz, the birthplace of bungy. Watch from the viewing platform or if you’re game have a go yourself.
Gold fever in Arrowtown
Once a bustling gold rush town that was home to thousands, Arrowtown retains its olde worlde charm through preservation of its colourful history and colonial style. Check out the Lakes District Museum and Chinese Miners’ Settlement. If you’re feeling lucky, pan for gold in the Arrow River.
Hang with the Hobbits
Transport yourself to Middle Earth. Head for Kawarau Gorge, between Queenstown and Cromwell, which was a Lord of the Rings film location for the scene where the Hobbits paddle through the Pillars of the Kings. The river, which drops 145m along its 56km course, also makes for some truly hair-raising white water rafting.
Cruse the lake
Hop aboard the TSS Earnslaw, a vintage steam ship which plies the waters of Lake Wakatipu, for a leisurely cruise. Launched in 1912, the 50m steel hull is one of the oldest tourist attractions in Central Otago. Notable former passengers include Queen Elizabeth and Prince Phillip.
Hit the slopes
Queenstown is blessed with among the best ski and snowboard slopes in the country. Cadrona, Coronet Peak, the Remarkables and Treble Cone ski fields are all within a short drive of Queenstown, and in winter bustle with snow-lovers from around the world. If you have arrived in town without ski equipment, do not fear. Ski and snowboard equipment hire outlets are dotted through Queenstown and neighbouring Wanaka.