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Adventures for All

48 Hours in Queenstown, New Zealand

The Remarkables live up to the name.

The Remarkables live up to the name.

If New Zealand gave birth to adrenaline sports, Queenstown is where those sports gestated. It’s flanked by the aptly named Remarkables mountain range, perched on a lake that rivals Lake Tahoe, and criss-crossed by canyons, rivers and gulleys. Here’s just a taste of what you can do in Queenstown in the summer in just two days – winter is a different animal, and very suitable for snow sports:

Activities
  • TSS Earnslaw – This steamship was built in 1912, making it younger than most of its current passengers. Okay, I’m exaggerating – but not much! Cruises can just take you for a lake excursion on Lake Wakatipu, or for a multi-course meal on the far side of the lake. Watch the steam engine crew at work, and hang out on the bridge with the captain, who will likely be rockin’ The Police while fogeys do a sing-along by the lounge piano. Sedate, but relaxing.
  • Street Luge - A cable car gives you a great view. But you’d better focus on the twisty track when bombing down in an unpowered go-cart. It can get plenty fast, but the track is more tame than I’d prefer. Still fun, though!
  • Bungee Jumping – A signature activity. You’ll have your pick of operators and sizes.
Sarah paraglides above Queenstown.

  • Paragliding – Not quite as extreme as skydiving, but you’ll get an incredible view of The Remarkables, the town and Lake Wakatipu. It takes about 10 minutes. Get there around 9 a.m. so you can book your flight before the winds change – they often stop gliding in the afternoon.
  • Hiking – The street luge course is the starting point for some awesome long hikes. Some will take you to nearby mining ghost towns!

Think Twice About …

  • The Underwater Observatory – Sure, $5 NZ is cheap. But you won’t see much from this very small space with one window.
Eating
  • Patagonia Chocolates - Awesome desserts. Try the banana split ice cream. Everything is rich and tasty.sdc10079-1
  • Fergburger – It’s a Queenstown legend. People who live 16 hours away talk about it. You’ll find some exotic meats there in addition to beef. However, Fergburger has one of the planet’s most annoying Flash Web sites, so I’ve shafted them out of a link here. Anything that automatically plays music and takes too long to load drives me crazy.
  • Dux De Lux - Best microbrewery in town, and it ranks high in the nation. Ginger Tom is a standout.
  • Aggys Shack - Locals say it only “looks dodgy,” and they’re right. This greasy place by the docks serves up fish ‘n’ chips, of course, and a raw fish concoction with coconut milk and the freshest green-lipped mussels ever. Super-cheap, too! No link – not for an annoying Web site, but for lack of one altogether!
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5 Responses to 48 Hours in Queenstown, New Zealand

  1. Tanmoy says:

    Your new blog is fabulous. I shall update my blog roll accordingly. During our current trip to ChCh, we could not go to the glaciers because I had to return for some urgent office work that demanded attention. However, we are planning to visit sometime soon. I have gathered all your notes and I am sure it would be a great experience.

    Helicopter ride was fun. It was a first for us too. We thought of doing the air-ballooning too but then the weather prevented us.

  2. Ratty says:

    Sounds like a lot of cool things to do. The cruise is probably more my speed than the extreme stuff. My normal adventure is walking in the woods, so something like bungee jumping would scare me half to death. The paragliding might be something I’d try.

  3. admin says:

    I’m with you on the bungee jumping, Ratty. That sort of thing is so not my bag. Paragliding, even skydiving … yes. But something about the bungee does not sit well with this guy!

  4. admin says:

    Welcome to the new site, Tanmoy!

    Sorry the glacier didn’t pan out for you. I’ll be watching for you to get another attempt. It’s such a great time. I really love being able to talk about NZ with someone who’s been to the same spots!

  5. Queenstown Adventure says:

    Hi there, I discovered your website by the use of Google at the same time as looking for a comparable topic, your website came up, it looks great. I have added to favourites|added to bookmarks.

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