How to get around Queenstown
The Best Ways to Get Around Queenstown
Every day, an endless stream of domestic and international flights touches down at Queenstown International Airport. So, what do all those visitors do when they step off the plane and out of the airport? What are the transport options for getting around Queenstown?
The good news is there are plenty of options for getting around Queenstown. If you’re looking to hire a car, 4WD, caravan or taxi, you’ll find everything you need at the airport. And once you’ve settled into your accommodation there are plenty of other ways to explore Queenstown.
In Queenstown Ritchies bus line (formerly Connectabus) is Queenstown’s only public transport option. No trains, trams or ferries here! Bus routes cover all of the Wakatipu Basin including Kelvin Heights, Arthurs Point, Arrowtown, Lake Hayes Estate and Fernhill. Just make sure you know how to spot the Ritchies buses, and don’t get confused with the endless supply of tourist buses that cruise through Queenstown. Look for the Ritchies name to make sure you’re on the right bus.
The other important thing to remember is that this is not central London, so you’ll need to check the bus schedules to make sure you’re not waiting at the bus stop for too long. Busy routes run every 15 minutes, but some routes only run every 30 minutes. Options for tickets include a single pass ticket, a one-day pass and a 7-day visitor discount card.
Jumping on the bike is our favourite way to get around Queenstown. The lakeside cycle track is right at the doorstep of Spinnaker Bay, so there’s no excuse not to get some exercise while you’re getting around. Want to head into town and do some shopping or dining? Just turn right onto the track. Want to do some sightseeing and head toward the river trails and further afield to Arrowtown and Gibbston Valley? Turn left! Queenstown by bike is a slower-paced option for taking in all that stunning scenery.
Hiring a campervan is a popular way for visitors to see the South Island. If you’re driving into Queenstown in a campervan, it’s worth doing your research on where to park. Central Queenstown is busy, and there are limited options for parking large vehicles. If you’re stuck for a park, head to the Boundary St/Gorge Road car park by the library for designated campervan parks. You will also find campervan parking at Frankton’s 5 Mile Shopping Centre.
Taxis and shuttles are available throughout Queenstown and also offer services further afield to wineries, ski fields and walking tracks. Taxis are metered, and you will be charged an extra fee for airport transfers. You can book a taxi 24 hours a day or grab a cab at one of the taxi ranks in central Queenstown at Shotover, Duke and Camp Streets.
For something a little different, why not take the water taxi across Lake Wakatipu? Operating between the main marina in central Queenstown and the Kawarau Falls jetty at Kelvin Height's Hilton, the water taxi is public transport with a view. There is a regular service running until 10 pm, and the boats are available for private charters to the Kelvin Heights Golf Course or hiking tracks across the lake.
Sure, you may look like a baby giraffe learning to walk as you wobble your way along the sidewalk but why not give it a go? Segway gives you theopportunity to tour central Queenstown without having to use your legs! Segway offers a 1-hour or 2-hour guided scenic tour.
When in Queenstown, why not treat yourself. Splash out and hire a limousine for a little luxury when it comes to getting around. You will find a number of highly professional limousine companies in Queenstown that do much more than airport transfers. With luxury vans and coaches available you can hire a private vehicle for a day out in the wineries or even further afield to Milford Sound.