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WANAKA NAMED IN THE WORLD’S BEST SKI TOWNS
Lake Wanaka has been named in the top 25 ski towns worldwide by the National Geographic. Wanaka is the only Southern Hemisphere town to make the list that includes iconic ski destinations such as Chamonix (France), Aspen (USA), Whistler (Canada) and Zermatt (Switzerland).
The only ski town in the Southern Hemisphere to be named in National Geographic’s top 25 Ski Towns
Why Wanaka? Resting on the shores of Lake Wanaka amongst the snow covered Southern Alps; Wanaka is recognised as New Zealand’s premier winter adventure hub. Full of the hustle and bustle of passionate outdoors people, town becomes a buzz throughout the winter season.
(left: Lake Wanaka & Black Peak, right: Lake Wanaka Golf Course - photos: Lake Wanaka Tourism)
In winter, Wanaka plays home to four ski resorts, all within a 40 minute drive. The closest of the Wanaka ski fields is Treble Cone, who also lays title to the largest ski field in New Zealand’s South Island. Travel a little further and you will find the renowned terrain parks of Snow Park NZ, the dedicated cross country ski area of Snow Farm, and Cardrona ski area.
After a day’s skiing, Wanaka foreshore offers an especially unique après vibe, overlooking Lake Wanaka and the surrounding snowy peaks. With most of Wanaka’s accommodation within a short walk (or taxi ride) from town, you won’t feel out of place strolling home with red cheeks and skis over your shoulder at the end of a great day skiing and snowboarding in Wanaka.
Enjoy après overlooking the majestic Lake Wanaka at sunset. No better way to end a snow day!
For dinner, Wanaka is peppered with restaurants catering for families, quick bites and romantic dinners. If you are making a night of it, try one of the several brew houses in town before heading to the bars to brag about your day skiing or snowboarding one of Wanaka’s ski fields.
True to reputation, Wanaka in winter offerings an endless number of activities to keep everyone entertained during a rest day off snow. Many of the cafes, adventure activities and day spas link with your OnePassNZ (Treble Cone and Cardrona ski pass) making swapping a day pass for a massage easy.
(Lake Wanaka from Mt Roy - photo: Lake Wanaka Tourism)
Getting to Wanaka in Winter
Treble Cone is the closest ski field to Wanaka, located a short 35 minute scenic drive around Lake Wanaka. There are many options including door to door shuttle services helping Wanaka’s winter visitors to get to Treble Cone.
Drive to Wanaka in Winter
Wanaka is the gateway to the west coast, and as such has extensive road networks from every direction.
- Queenstown (airport) to Wanaka – 60 minute drive
- Dunedin (airport) to Wanaka – 3 hour drive
- Christchurch (airport) to Wanaka – 5 hour drive
Jucy Rentals are located in all of New Zealand’s major airports and are a great budget way to rent a car or camper and drive to ski Wanaka.
Fly to Wanaka in Winter
Regular flights between major Australian and New Zealand Airports run direct to Queenstown Airport throughout the winter season. Direct flights are serviced by Air New Zealand, Jet Star, Virgin and Qantas.
- Melbourne/Sydney/Brisbane to Queenstown – 3h 30m flight
- Christchurch to Queenstown – 1 hour flight
- Auckland to Queenstown – 1h 50m flight
- Wellington to Queenstown – 1h 45m flight
Bus to Wanaka in Winter
Regular coaches run between Wanaka and Christchurch, Invercargill, Dunedin, Queenstown, West Coast and surrounding local areas to Wanaka.
For more information about getting to Wanaka, visit Lake Wanaka Tourism