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Lake Wakatipu
Lake Wakatipu

Lake Wakatipu

The Basics

There are several ways to experience Lake Wakatipu. Jet boats ferry passengers to 4WD vehicles for off-road adventures in the Southern Alps or Paradise Valley; helicopter tours fly travelers over the lake, Fiordland, and Milford Sound; and fishing charters promise a good catch.

For a more relaxed experience, opt for a cruise aboard the vintage steamship TSS Earnslaw or glide along the river on a catamaran while taking in the view. You can also view the lake from Saint Omer Park, Queenstown Gardens, the Queenstown Trail, or one of the many restaurants on the southern shoreline in central Queenstown.

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Lake Wakatipu Scenic Catamaran Cruise from Queenstown
Lake Wakatipu Scenic Catamaran Cruise from Queenstown
star-4.5
$31.60 per adult
Traveler Favorite
Awesome Experience
This trip was well worth the price. Great experience. Lots of good informative on-board commentary and history of the area. Good food and service. We were able to walk atound on the boat finding the best spots for taking photos.
Amber_W, Jun 2022

Recent reviews from experiences in Queenstown

star-5
Must do! Keep warm!
Toa_J, Jun 2022
Lake Wakatipu Scenic Catamaran Cruise from Queenstown
Awesome View!! Beautiful!! Suggest you wear beanie scarf hoodie and a warm jacket on top even warm pants. Its cold out on the cruise but loved it
star-5
Breathing taking.
Tahaana_V, May 2022
Lake Wakatipu Scenic Catamaran Cruise from Queenstown
Would so recommend this cruise. Absolutely amazing. You won’t be disappointed. The views were just breath taking. We didn’t even want to me leave.
star-5
Friendly, comfortable cruise
Vikash_S, May 2022
Lake Wakatipu Scenic Catamaran Cruise from Queenstown
Friendly service and staff. Cruise was on time and ran to schedule. Great coverage of the lake with appropriate commentary. On board Cafe is a wonderful touch.
star-4
Despite the rain which...
judith_k, May 2022
Lake Wakatipu Scenic Catamaran Cruise from Queenstown
Despite the rain which added an ambience I had a lovely time. Tgecwine and cheeseboard was delicious. Commentary hard to hear but at least ut easn't too loud. Would reccomend.
star-5
wonderful views of the...
Sylvia_W, Feb 2022
Lake Wakatipu Scenic Catamaran Cruise from Queenstown
wonderful views of the top of the lake - memorable experience and beautiful day - would recommend it
star-5
Anniversary
Delwyn_G, Jan 2022
Lake Wakatipu Scenic Catamaran Cruise from Queenstown
Staff were absolutely amazing and attentive, captain explained everything so clearly. The views were breathtaking
star-5
Great experience
Susan_T, Jan 2022
Lake Wakatipu Scenic Catamaran Cruise from Queenstown
Absolutely recommend this cruise the stunning views and friendly staff , not to mention the cheese and wine boards served was delicious
star-5
Relaxed Cruising
Ian_W, Jan 2022
Lake Wakatipu Scenic Catamaran Cruise from Queenstown
Easy relaxed atmosphere onboard with very friendly crew. The cruise was informative and gave us ideas about activities for our next stay in Queenstown. The wine and cheese was a lovely touch with a good selection of local wines and the cheese selection complimented nicely with dried fruits, olives, sundried tomatoes and pickle.
star-5
It was an amazing...
Agalelei_T, Oct 2021
Lake Wakatipu Scenic Catamaran Cruise from Queenstown
It was an amazing journey, skipper and crew members very friendly. Thanks for the lovely experience .
star-4
Awesome visit with great staff
Jimmy_C, Jul 2021
Lake Wakatipu Scenic Catamaran Cruise from Queenstown
Great views, excellent weather, well-maintained Catemaran with lovely and friendly staff and captain. Great to visit the captain whilst steering the ship!
star-5
Wakatipu holiday cruise
Kerry_E, Jul 2021
Lake Wakatipu Scenic Catamaran Cruise from Queenstown
Cool cruise on Wakatipu with great commentary and awesome scenery. Local history and other activities described well during cruise.
star-5
Fantastic great mulled wine
Sonya_W, Jul 2021
Lake Wakatipu Scenic Catamaran Cruise from Queenstown
Mulled wine Fantastic scenery great boat x would recommend anyone to take this great cheese platter and price value excellent.
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Things to Know Before You Go

  • Tour options are available for families with kids and solo adventurers alike.

  • Be sure to dress in layers, as the wind can pick up suddenly.

  • Tours range from short, 90-minute excursions to full-day, 8-hour adventures.

  • Many of the Lake Wakatipu experiences are accessible for wheelchair users; check with your tour provider in advance.

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How to Get There

Queenstown is right on the lake, so a trip to this popular city includes easy lake access. Additional access points abound between Kingston on the south end and Glenorchy on the north end. Tours usually include round-trip pickup and drop-off from Queenstown.

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When to Get There

The Southern Lakes region is a year-round travel destination, offering phenomenal skiing in winter and hiking in summer. Lake activities are more popular during the warmer months, although the glacier-fed lake remains cold regardless of the season.

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Legendary Shores

Atmospheric pressures cause the water level in the lake to rise and fall about five inches (12 centimeters) every five minutes. This gave rise to the Maori legend that the rise and fall of the water is the heartbeat of a giant who lies slumbering under the water. Modern storytellers chose the lake as a filming location for the Lothlorein scenes in The Lord of the Rings.

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Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What are the nearest attractions to Lake Wakatipu?
Q:
What else should I know about attractions in Queenstown?
A:
As well as visiting the Lake Wakatipu, check out these trip ideas to make the most of your visit: