Set against the alpine backdrop of Mount Aspiring National Park, Wanaka is only a short but very scenic drive from Queenstown as well as the Cardrona and Treble Cone ski fields.
Given their proximity to one another, it’s inevitable that Wanaka is compared to the much larger alpine town of Queenstown: they are both set amidst the mountains and are located upon the shores of pristine lakes, and they both cater to thrill-seekers and adventure lovers. The variety of activities available makes Wanaka a perfect tour destination any time of year.
Enjoy a relaxed and carefree vibe
What you’ll find in Wanaka is a bit more of a relaxed and carefree vibe. The air is fresh, the town is compact, the lake is relatively uncluttered of development and there are tonnes of fun activities, mountain bike trails, tracks and snow-filled adventures to be had here.
Wanaka enjoys a semi-continental climate of four distinct seasons which is, in part, responsible for the reputation the region has for being a hub of exceptional food and wine. Spend some time here and you’ll be sure to encounter some world-class cuisine, wine and even alpine-crisp spirits at the lakefront bars, cafes and restaurants.
Don’t miss these free/cheap things to do in Wanaka
Visit the rad food trucks on Brownston Street where for a reasonable price you can get your fill of dumplings, burritos, wood-fired pizzas and bao.
Pay a visit to the quaint and cosy Cinema Paradiso for a unique movie theatre experience.
Go for a stroll lakeside or a hike on a mountain – they’re more than just a pretty facade! There are some lovely quick walks around, just ask your Haka Tours guide for their recommendation.
If you were born before the year 2000, you should probably check out the National Transport & Toy Museum where there’s an eclectic treasure trove of more than 60, 000 items. Star Wars figurines, Smurfs, Cabbage Patch Kids and military dioramas co-exist with 1962 Jaguar Mk X, Ferraris from the 1970s and fire engines, aircraft and other vehicles.
Photo Credits: Destination Wanaka
Tours including Wanaka
Visit Queenstown, Wanaka, glaciers & rainforests then see more of the South Island on the world famous TranzAlpine rail journey.View tour
Take in significant Southern highlights & must-do activities: mountains, lakes, glaciers, pristine rainforest & the world famous TranzAlpine rail journey.View tour
New Zealand Uncovered
Uncover all the beauty, adventure, culture and fun activities of New Zealand and tick practically everything off your bucket list.View tour
South Island Snow Odyssey
Experience the finest in NZ skiing & snowboarding on 11 mountains in 12 days – it’s the snow vacation you’ve been waiting for!View tour
South Island Lick Tour
A week with wow factor! Tick off iconic South Island destinations with unbeatable scenery and a large dose of adventure.View tour
Ultimate Heli Tour
Ski & board some of the longest heli runs in the Southern Hemisphere & experience 3 mountain ranges on this bucket list tour.View tour
South Island Adrenalin Junkie Tour
Starting in Christchurch, we’ll get your pulse racing at these Southern highlights including the West Coast & Queenstown’s adventure playground.View tour
Legendary NZ Tour
Our Legendary Tour lives up to its name, with stupendous scenery, bucket loads of adventure and eye-opening cultural experiences.View tour
Epic NZ Tour
Discover more of NZ than most New Zealanders, as you thoroughly explore the best of both the North and South Islands.View tour
South Island Snow Safari
All abilities are welcome on our one-week snow tour that takes you to the top ski & snowboard locations on six mountains.View tour
Amplified NZ Tour
Discover the best of the North and South Island. Tours run from Auckland to Christchurch, or Christchurch to Auckland.View tour
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