Queenstown is superbly situated in the southern-centre of New Zealand's South Island, a small, low-rise community surrounded by mountains, crystal lakes and the cleanest air imaginable. Originally a gold-mining town it's now a tourist centre, predominantly youth-oriented, with a lively night scene and an astonishing array of daytime activities such as ...
A typical Queenstown street.
... traditional hiking (known as tramping in New Zealand), fishing, horse-riding, cycling, climbing, skiing, white-water rafting, sailing and kayaking to adrenalin events like bungy jumping, jet-boating, paragliding, luge-riding, mountain-biking, quad-biking and some other form of heart-pumping, mobile madness created weekly by lunatic local entrepreneurs. In addition of course, there's less strenuous golf, lake cruising, steam train rides, tennis, wine tours, scenic drives and hot air ballooning for the less fit tourists.
A luge run (a dry, fast toboggan) in Queenstown, with Lake Wakatipu and the Remarkable Mountains.
A Lake Wakatipu walk, Queenstown.
Winter sports operating around Queenstown include snowmobiling, snow-tubing, ice climbing and snow-shoeing, while spas, galleries, shops and a fine selection of bars and restaurants keep the stay-at-homes busy.
Bungee jumping over Queenstown. Photo by Will Ellis.
Day trips out of Queenstown include to the most famous tourist destination in the country, a lengthy 295 km (184 mile) but splendid drive to magnificent Milford Sound in Fiordland National Park where a boat trip is one of the indispensable pleasures.
Cyclists preparing for a day on two wheels in Otago, near Queenstown.
Next, South Island Sights.
This is a typical Otago Central Rail Trail tour organised by New Zealand tour operators.
Next, South Island Sights
email from Chris:
Queenstown was awesome. Beautiful location, even more beautiful girls and the biggest bungee jump in New Zealand. 134m and 8 seconds of pant-soiling freefall fun. Put it on your list of things to do before you die. They've got a luge too which was real good fun, bit like karting except you're powered by gravity and momentum. We made some really good chums there who very kindly took us with them on a cruise to Milford Sound, Mirror Lakes and joined us for a drink in World Bar, where I think I inadvertently took rohipnol. A lesson to all, especially girls, if two random creepy guys (I'm not talking about me and John obviously) buy you drinks then leave, taking their drinks with them but leaving yours untouched - DON'T DRINK THEM. Unless of course you want to wake up in a field with no memory and a curiously sore bottom.