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The elegant resort-style town of Queenstown is ideal for a family holiday, given the range of attractions and activities on offer. The weather is usually in a good shape, and the open green spaces add to the beauty of the place. There are plenty of family-friendly attractions in and around the city, some of which are enlisted below. You can also book Queenstown bus hire for a convenient ride, if you are travelling in a group.
Any trip to Queenstown is incomplete, without a trip on the Skyline Gondola, which transports you to the summit of Bob’s Peak. A must-do activity for both adults and children alike, this is the starting point of the Skyline Luge Tracks. Enjoy the real-time experience of twisting and bending, as you go on a ride on a scenic or advanced track in 3-wheel Luge cart roaring down the 800m long Luge tracks. Young kids can accompany their parents and shout as much as they want. There are also short walks, downhill mountain biking tracks and scenic viewpoints accessible, along with a cafe and buffet restaurant.
Kiwi Birdlife Park
Spread across an area of 5 acres of Parkland, the Kiwi Birdlife Park is next to Gondola, hardly a 5-minute walk from the Queenstown centre. Here you will find some of the rarest animal species, including the iconic kiwi, Kea, Morepork and Tuatara. Special nocturnal houses are there for the kiwis, and they are fed 4 times a day, so that everyone has an opportunity to peek at this bird. Children will love watching the informative and entertaining conservation show conducted twice a day. Get yourself a Kiwi Kombo family pass for a combined experienced of the Gondola and the birdlife park at a discounted price.
Shotover High Five
Queenstown is home to some adrenaline filled activities, including the likes of bungy jumping or skydiving. However, if your kids are not quite ready for that kind of an experience, there are alternative options as well. Try the “Shotover High Five” package offered by Queenstown combos. This includes a helicopter ride, the world renowned Shotover Jet and the Gondola Luge in an amazing blend of activities. Your children will love you for this!
Queenstown Lakefront & Gardens
When planning a family trip to Queenstown, it can be hard to cut down the costs. But the city has Queenstown Gardens, Lake Wakatipu, and a number of bike tracks and playgrounds throughout the vicinity to keep the children amused, without even spending a buck. Head for the lakefront in town and get some bread for the ducks. Take a stroll to the Queenstown Gardens after spending some time at the lakefront playground. You can burn off some serious energy in the open space.
The Gardens has a dedicated golf course, where anyone can play free of cost, provided they have a Frisbee. It’s great family fun for all abilities, and easier to find your line of attack to reach the 18-hole course, as you take stroll in the garden. Keep track of your scores just in case you are feeling too competitive. You get to tee off and at the end of the hole, shoot for a basket, as each hole is marked as par, just like you would find in golf. During the winter months, the gardens open up the indoor ice-skating rink, which is an ideal lawn bowl, tennis court and outdoor skate park during the summer.
Nothing can be more pleasant and enjoyable than taking a cruise on Lake Wakatipu, boarding the iconic TSS Earnslaw Steamship. It is undeniably one of the best ways to experience the famed scenic beauty of Queenstown. The 90-minute cruise takes you past some of the most incredible alpine scenery of Queenstown, offering you plenty to discover in the century old steamship. You can witness the giant steam engines functioning and the historical collection of photos in the mini-museum. Enjoy a glass or beer and wine, along with delicious food at the Promenade Cafe and Bar. Cruises are regular throughout the day, and you can select a combination of tours to suit your interests.
There are plenty of cycling tracks in the Queenstown Trail, and rental bikes are available almost any time for people of all ages and abilities. More than 100 km of wide smooth cycling tracks are laid around the Wakatipu, where you can take a ride in some of the most scenic and safe cycling trails stretching miles, without seeing any diesel run vehicle.
Wet Weather Activities
There is plenty on offer, even if the weather is not suitable enough to go outdoors. Try the Caddyshack City indoor mini golf, ten pin bowls or cinema. A cheap way to feed the fish at Lake Wakatipu and Alpine Aqualand is through the underwater observatory at the main town pier. The hydroslide offers endless water fun for children!
Summer At Cardrona
The Cardrona Alpine Resort is full of adventure during the summer months with family-friendly options to make sure, everyone can take pleasure of being up in the mountains anytime of the day. The key summer activities include mountain biking, Alpine By Night experiences, tubing, alpine walking and mountain carting. The bike park features a variety of downhill trails for all abilities, and there is plenty to explore on the way. This season they have installed a new beginner skills area and flow track on the learning slop, serviced by surface conveyor. If you are looking for some real thrill, don’t miss out on the 10km trail ‘Peak to Pub’ covering the 1270 metres of descent.
Tour the trails and sharpen your skills with one of the experienced instructors at the Bike School. There are range of pass options for the family, including gold passes, season passes, rental packages, Friday night passes, full day passes and half day passes. There’s a designated kids park in the Base Area with ride-on features to make them comfortable riding on two wheels.