Nestled beside placid Lake Wakatipu on New Zealand’s beautiful South Island, Queenstown is surrounded by a set of soaring mountains aptly named The Remarkables. The surrounding peaks and green valleys make it a compelling choice if you enjoy skiing and snowboarding, winery tours or adventure sports.
Queenstown: City Layout and Top Attractions
The best way to see Queenstown is from above. You can take Skyline Gondola up to Bob’s Peak for panoramic views over the town and lake. Another impressive view is from TSS Earnslaw steamship, where guests can dine on board while cruising on the lake.
The town itself is compact, with high-end boutiques, refined restaurants and wellness retreats clustered around Camp Street, all within walking distance of the best hotels in Queenstown, NZ.
Daredevils head for Kawarau Bridge Bungy, braving a 141-foot leap down to the surging Kawarau River.
Eating Out in Queenstown
Queenstown’s elegant streets are home to tempting restaurants, many with lakeside views. An impressive array of international cuisine includes everything from Thai curries to Mediterranean-style shared platters, and freshly caught seafood is often paired with local wine.
You can enjoy cellar door wine tastings and more intimate winery restaurant experiences on a variety of visits and tours to the surrounding Central Otago region.
Culture and Nightlife in Queenstown
High above town, visitors to the Skyline complex can catch a demonstration of the Kiwi Haka, the Maori war dance that’s regularly performed by New Zealand’s All Blacks rugby team.
Every July, the NZ Mountain Film Festival brings adventure movies to town, adding a cultural experience to the ski season.
Queenstown’s legendary nightlife thrives year round. You’ll find everything from cozy wine bars to lively nightclubs packed in south of Stanley Street, if you have the energy after a day on the snow.
Shopping in Queenstown
Designer clothing, artworks and high-quality local sheepskin can all be found in the compact town’s pedestrian shopping streets, within easy reach of Queenstown, NZ hotels. You can use your IHG® Reward Club points to book a stay at Crowne Plaza® Queenstown, within walking distance of Camp Street.
Art galleries and workshops in Queenstown and nearby Arrowtown sell local and international art and hand-made crafts.
You can also pick up baskets, Maori carvings, distinctive jewelry and souvenirs at Saturday Creative Queenstown Art & Craft Market, held beside the lake in Earnslaw Park.
In summer, locals meet up at Remarkables Market, where handcrafted gifts are sold alongside fresh produce.
Skiing and Snowboarding in Queenstown
With one of the longest ski seasons in the southern hemisphere, Queenstown draws skiers and snowboarders from around the world to its four ski fields every year.
The Remarkables ski field is a comfortable choice for those traveling with young snow bunnies, and the treeless terrain means those with skiing experience can venture off-piste too.
A short drive away, Coronet Peak offers beautifully groomed fields and premium facilities, along with the chance to try skiing at night on its well-lit trails.
Crowne Plaza® Queenstown and the Holiday Inn® Queenstown Frankton Road are both conveniently close to Queenstown’s many attractions, and you can take advantage of affordable “YOUR RATE” offers when you book direct through IHG®.