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Summer Adventure in New Zealand’s South Island

Published October 13th, 2015

Although it gets touted as a top winter destination, New Zealand’s South Island is just as amazing in the summer. When you minus the snow and colder weather you can really get out and about to enjoy the gorgeous scenery and fresh air.

There are adventure activities galore in NZ South Island in the summertime...

Look mum - no hands. Fun @Shotoverjet. #queenstown with iPhone

A photo posted by Shotover Jet (@shotoverjetnz) on

Shotover Jet Hold on to your hats! The Shotover Jet is Queenstown’s biggest thrill ride, hurtling screaming passengers down the dramatic narrow passages of the Shotover River Canyons. The thrills and scenery are just as amazing in the summertime as they are in the winter, and best of all you’ll be able to enjoy the ride without the icy cold winds of winter!

TSS Earnslaw

For a boat ride that’s a little slower paced, the iconic steamship TSS Earnslaw cruises along Queenstown’s Lake Wakatipu at a more leisurely pace. In the summertime you can sit out on the deck and soak up the rays as you take in the views and watch the world go by. Choose to take a cruise by itself or a return cruise to Walter Peak Farm on the opposite side of the lake, where you can try horse-riding and take a farm tour.

Milford Sound One of the South Island’s top beauty spots, Milford Sound in the Fiordland National Park is at its best in the summer. January and February see the highest amount of rainfall in this rainforest landscape, and this means the Sound’s waterfalls are at their most amazing. Sit back and see the beauty of Milford Sound on a scenic cruise, and head out in a kayak if you’re feeling active. If you’re feeling really active and you have a few days to spare, the 53km Milford Track dubbed ‘the finest walk in the world’ is open for hiking during the summer months.


Queenstown’s natural beauty is best enjoyed from up high, and a gondola ride up to the Skyline is a great way to see it all. From the town centre, the gondola cars whisk you away up to the Skyline complex, showing off views of Lake Wakatipu, the mountain ranges, and the town sprawled out below. As pretty as the snow-capped mountains are in the winter, the green alpine landscape and turquoise lake waters are really gorgeous, and you’ll love hanging out at the Skyline in the sunshine and taking in the scenery. Stop for lunch, and take a ride on the Skyline luge run before heading back down to the town.

Franz Josef Glacier

Ice in the summer? It’s totally possible in NZ’s South Island! Hike the legendary Franz Josef Glacier, a 12km long spectacular giant river of ice. Take a half or full day tour with the option of taking a helicopter flight as part of the hike. After the big trip, soak weary bodies in the Franz Josef hot pools located in the centre of town – entry is included with tour bookings.

Book now and save with our sweet-as NZ deals available this month only! Check out our NZ Black Market flights, cheap stays and deals on car hire! Yew! 


Amy Dalgleish

Wanderlust pommie, currently living the dream in sunny Byron Bay.