The Best Queenstown Family Activities for Winter

If you are looking for an amazing winter holiday filled with activities for the whole family, look no more: you’ll find a real winter wonderland in Queenstown!

With tons of fun activities, both indoors and outdoors, Queenstown offers attractions for all ages, along with one the most beautiful backdrops in New Zealand. We selected 5 must-do activities for you and your family on your next winter visit to Queenstown.

The top 5 winter activities for families are:

  1. Skyline Gondola and Luge
  2. Go skiing or snowboarding
  3. Book a farm tour at Walter Peak
  4. Go ice skating
  5. Explore Arrowtown and Glenorchy
View from Skyline Queenstown of a purple sunset over snow covered Queenstown.
View of Queenstown from the Skyline Gondola

1. Take on the Skyline Gondola and Luge

You can’t miss out on the iconic Skyline Queenstown Gondola, the steepest cable car lift in the Southern Hemisphere. Sit back and soak in the stunning views while you are carried 450 metres above Queenstown and Lake Wakatipu to the top of Bob’s Peak, where you will enjoy the best views in the region unfolding before your eyes.


Once at the top, you’ll find many options to choose from: enjoy a delicious meal or a relaxing cuppa at the Market Kitchen Café, find a perfect holiday gift amongst a range of New Zealand made products at the gift shop, or go straight to the adrenaline-filled Skyline Luge, an iconic attraction where fun is guaranteed for the whole family!


During winter months, the Skyline Luge lights up from dusk for the ultimate fun night out! With a stunning night-time backdrop of Queenstown and the surrounding mountains, it’s impossible not to have fun as you zoom down 1600m of thrilling, bright coloured tracks of the Night Luge. After a day at the mountains, this might be the highlight of your holiday!

Location: Brecon Street, Queenstown
Open Hours and Tickets: Visit our website


2. Go skiing or snowboarding

Queenstown is home to arguably New Zealand’s best ski fields. From June to October, you can enjoy great ski or snowboard sessions for all ages and abilities on 4 world-class ski fields right on the town’s doorstep.

All the ski fields offer fantastic family orientated facilities and services, like ski schools, snow sports academies and kids clubs. Downtown you’ll find daily mountain transport and plenty of stores to hire all gear you’ll need.

Queenstown Mountains: Coronet Peak and The Remarkables
Wanaka Mountains: Cardrona, Treble Cone

Skiers Looking out over Lake Wanaka.
Image credit: queenstownnz.co.nz

3. Book a Farm Tour at Walter Peak

The Walter Peak Farm Tour offers many attractions for both adults and kids. You’ll start your journey with a scenic cruise on board the vintage TSS Earnslaw to the farm, then you’ll be guided on a short walk to explore the farmyard and will be demonstrated the farming lifestyle. Cute farm animals will be around, and you’ll be able to feed them.

The adventure is topped off with a delicious morning or afternoon tea and you may have some time stroll through the lakeside gardens before you re-board the boat for your cruise back to Queenstown.

Tour Departures: Steamer Warf, Queenstown CBD
Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes
Season: Year-round

Family with a young child feed highland cattle on a Walter Peak Farm Tour, accessed on the iconic TSS Earnslaw steam ship.
Image credit: realjourneys.co.nz

4. Go ice skating

Located at the Queenstown Gardens, hop over to the covered ice arena and have a go at ice skating. Whether you are a pro skater or someone taking to the ice for the first time, you’ll have an unforgettable experience and great memories for life.

Also, if you fancy the ice, you can book private lessons for your family and even learn ice hockey with qualified instructors.

Location: Queenstown Gardens 29 Park Street, Queenstown
Activities: Ice skating, Bumper Cars, Ice Hockey, Curling

Father & Son holding hands while Ice Skating at Queenstown Ice Arean.
Image credit: queenstownicearena.co.nz

5. Explore Arrowtown and Glenorchy

At a short 20-minute drive from Queenstown, you can visit the picturesque village of Arrowtown. You can spend a few hours wondering around the region exploring its walking tracks or grabbing a bite and a hot drink at one of the main street restaurants and cafes, amongst other attractions.


If you are amazed with the “Lord of the Rings” scenery, we recommend taking the lakeside drive to Glenorchy, where you will experience a real slice of Middle Earth: snow-capped mountains, stunning views and plenty of great photo spots. Once in Glenorchy, you can pick a spot for a family picnic or, for the more adventurous, try the wilderness with a range of activities like horse riding, jet boating or hiking.

Driving Time: Queenstown to Arrowtown takes approximately 20-minutes
Driving Time: Queenstown to Glenorchy takes approximately 45-minutes

Dart River Jet Boat Safarai in Glenorchy Queenstown.
Image credit: experiencequeenstown.com

For a bit of downtime, Queenstown offers plenty of relaxed fun including cinema, swimming pools, and variety of cafes and restaurants. You will sure be able to keep the whole family entertained and create memorable experiences on your winter getaway!

If you're looking for more ideas for your family trip to Queenstown...

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