Winter Pride Queenstown (formerly known as Gay Ski Week) is returning to Queenstown this year for another action packed week of events, dance parties, pub crawls, entertainment and skiing.
Spanning nine days from the 31 August through to 8th September, the Winter Pride ‘19 festival is designed to celebrate New Zealand’s diversity and encourage a sense of community spirit while having a ton of fun of course! This year’s epic line-up of fun-filled activities could find no better location than New Zealand’s famous adventure capital – Queenstown.
Queenstown is known for its spectacular alpine scenery, world class skiing and snowboarding and well…the odd extreme adrenaline pumping adventure such as bungy jumping, canyon swinging, ziplining, jet boating, canyoning, skydiving, paragliding – the list goes on and on. Vacationing in the Queenstown region offers festival goers the perfect place to really unwind and let loose while enjoying the excitement of the Queenstown Winter Pride 2019 festival events.
What’s On At Queenstown’s Winter Pride 2019?
The 2019 line-up includes a full week of festival fun, socialising, skiing and the chance for local businesses to get involved, look out for specials, deal and events around Queenstown. This year’s event schedules are divided into three main categories; on mountain, off mountain, and the Durex Pride Party Series. Here is a quick rundown of some of our top picks for Winter Pride ’19.
Saturday 31st August
Join the fun at the Novotel Queenstown Lakeside for the official Welcome and Registration kicking off at 4 pm on the corner of Earl Street and Marine Parade. Grab a welcome pack, book event tickets and some branded gear.
Then get the party started and stop by the official Club Tropicana Opening Party at 9 pm at The World Bar and Restaurant on Church Street or try the Skycity Casino for a Speed Dating extravaganza starting at 6.30pm.
Sunday 1st September
Sunday brings us Ladies Night at the Zephyr Bar on Searle Lane or head down to the Loco on Shotover Street for a classic military themed party from 8 pm onward. On the mountain it’s the Cardona ski fields turn to entertain with live DJ’s and music.
The Grille Shared Table event at 7 pm offers up dinner in style at the famous Grille By Eichardts restaurant.
Monday 2nd September
Dress up glam for The Ballarat Trading Co. social Games Night at 7 pm. Fabulous prizes and fun for all. (Ages 18 and over only).
Or learn from the masters and make your own cocktails at the Habana Bar on Searle Lane from 7 pm onwards. On the mountain its Coronet Peak’s launch day today.
Tuesday 3rd September
Slow it down a little and enjoy a long lunch at the Gibbston Valley Winery out on State Highway 6, Gibbston. The Gibbston Valley Long Lunch kicks off at 11.30 am with a complimentary glass of bubbles on arrival.
The Pride Cruise Party is the perfect way to kick off the evening’s entertainment, head down to the waterfront from 8 pm onward.
Wednesday 5th September
Head down to Winnies for the big one tonight – Queenstown’s Got Talent and enjoy cabaret wars with Kita and Anita from 7.30 till late.
Its Charity Ski Race Day at the Remarkables, or take a Hike For Pride over the Ben Lomond Saddle at 10am to get some fresh air and enjoy the beautiful Queenstown landscapes.
Thursday 6th September
Show them how it’s done at the SKYCITY QT Karaoke event, be at the SKYCITY Queenstown Casino by 8 pm and dress to impress!
Swing by the Urge Underwear Party at Vinyl underground for some late night fun with DJ Donald Bennet and Dom De Sousa. And its Onsie day on the mountain at Cardrona!
Friday 7th September
The ASB Pride in the Park is the place to be today, this free Pride in the Park event is fun for all, expect to see live drag shows, singers, comedy acts, DJs, dance troops and much much more. Or watch the Pride Rugby Tournament in Memorial Park at 11am before and make a day of it.
When you are finished enjoying the Pride in the Park entertainment head on over to Leather and Lace at the Loco Bar from 9pm onwards and enjoy the evening’s entertainment.
Saturday 8th September
Round off the perfect week with the Propaganda White party at the Memorial Centre on Memorial Street, central Queenstown. Featuring Auckland’s premier gay dance party Propaganda, this event begins at 8.30 pm and goes into the wee small hours.
Winter Pride Accommodation In Queenstown
Need somewhere to stay for Gay Ski Week? Being a tourist orientated area; there is a wide range of accommodation in Queenstown to suit every budget and personal preference. Choose from budget backpacker style, well equipped camping grounds, boutique Bed and Breakfasts, motels and hotels along with luxury resort or lodge style options.
Accommodation prices and availability in Queenstown will vary with May, June, September and October traditionally the quietest months, however a growing number of visitors year round has meant there is really no off-peak season for accommodation providers. As with any vacation it pays to book in advance to avoid disappointment.
Be sure to think about location when booking accommodation in Queenstown. Most Winter Pride events are held in the central city, however if wanting to spread your wings and seek accommodation outside of the township, consider hiring a rental car while in Queenstown to take the hassle out of getting around – maybe even make some time for a bit of sightseeing after all the partying is done.
What’s The Best Way To Get To Queenstown?
Depending on where festival goers are arriving from there are several great options for travelling to Queenstown. Online booking facilities are available for all transport options, see individual websites for more information.
- By Air. Queenstown is lucky enough to have an international airport situated in Frankton, very close to the central township. The terminal is open between 4 am and 11 pm every day and offers visitors a fast efficient method of travelling to Queenstown at any time of the year. AirNZ, Virgin Australia, Jetstar and Qantas all provide scheduled flights into Queenstown Airport on a regular basis.
- By Car. Renting a car is also a popular method of travel to Queenstown. Pick up a hire car from Picton as you depart the Inter Island Ferry, Blenheim or Nelson and make an epic road trip out of it, fly in to Christchurch and grab a car rental and make the five hour journey a memorable one with friends and family, or grab a Greymouth or Dunedin rental car.
- By Bus. New Zealand is lucky enough to have a good network of bus services operating across the country, getting to Queenstown by bus is an affordable option for those not wishing to drive or fly. There are several good bus companies that offer travel to and from Queenstown on a regular basis, however InterCity is the main public bus carrier for direct travel between Christchurch and Queenstown. Their direct route departs Christchurch at 8.30 am, arriving in Queenstown at 4.30 pm.
Tickets for the Winter Pride 2019 individual events are available from the website along with handy tips on where to stay in Queenstown, local ski areas, where to eat and things to do. Or for up-to-date news and information check out the Winter Pride Facebook page.