If you’re keen on our Queenstown car rental service, then you’ll be just as keen to explore the Central Otago region. While it is a good idea to base yourself in Queenstown – it is the place to be when the sun goes down! – you’d be missing out on a whole lot if you didn’t take a few easy day trips while you’re here. We’d be happy to suggest some to you once you’ve completed your booking with us but in the meantime, here are a few suggestions.
- About 15 to 20 minutes out of Queenstown is the gold mining village of Arrowtown. They say that some places take you back in time and Arrowtown is the most beautiful example of that. Picture perfect in every respect and locals say the Arrowtown Bakery does the best pies in the whole world, so plan to arrive at about lunchtime
- The Crown Range Road is another easy drive; about 30 minutes from Queenstown. It’s a short journey well worth making as it’s New Zealand’s highest state highway at an altitude of 1,121 metres at its peak. The view from the summit is as spectacular as you’d expect but on the way you’ll pass the lower reaches of the Shotover River and beautiful Lake Hayes and, if you time it right, you can take in the sunset at Arrow Junction.
- The Remarkables give Queenstown that stunning backdrop – but how about getting up close and personal with this scenic wonder? Another 30-minute drive so it won’t take long to get there, however there’s some great places to stop at on the way. ‘Epic Lookout’ is one of them with amazing views over the Wakatipu Basin as well as Queenstown Airport. After that, the road towards the peaks is breathtaking with the opportunity to walk to Lake Alta, which will be familiar to fans of Lord of the Rings.
- You can’t hire a car in Queenstown and not drive to Glenorchy. It’s a spectacular journey alongside Lake Wakatipu and one of the most scenic drives in the world. There are some awesome places to take in on the way including Bob’s Cove Track which is another place bound to delight Lord of the Rings lovers, as well as Bennetts Bluff Lookout which has stunning views of the lake and the mountain peaks on the other side. There are plenty of other places to see, and we’ll happily tell you about them, so expect the scheduled 40-minute driving time to balloon just a little!
- Wanaka is one hour from Queenstown, and another must visit. On leaving Queenstown, you follow the same route as you do for the Crown Range Mountain Summit but you push on to the town of Cardrona which has the iconic Cardrona Hotel and, just down the road, the quirky Cardrona Bra Fence. On reaching Wanaka, you’re surrounded by lakes, mountains and other landmarks that will make you glad that you came.
Of course, there are many more day trip opportunities leaving from Queenstown. For example, you can make an early start and head to miraculous Milford Sound. Just over three hours each way – but well worth it. If you want to carry out a longer road adventure like that, you’re best to do it in style and we have the vehicle fleet to make every journey, no matter the distance, a supremely comfortable one.