Top 10 Summer Adventure Activities in Queenstown, New Zealand in 2024

In this post, we reveal the top 10 summer adventure activities in Queenstown, each embodying the vibrant and picturesque essence of this renowned destination. Known as the Adventure Capital of the World, Queenstown is nestled amidst the stunning scenery of New Zealand’s South Island. With its breathtaking landscapes and heart-pounding experiences, Queenstown attracts thrill-seekers from across the globe.

Best Summer Adventure Activities in Queenstown

1. Bungee Jumping: Defying Gravity in Queenstown

Bungee Jumping

One of the summer adventure activities in Queenstown is Bungee jumping. In the heart of Queenstown, an exhilarating adventure awaits those seeking to defy gravity and awaken their spirits. Known as the adventure capital of the world, Queenstown offers stunning scenery that doubles as a playground for thrill-seekers.

A prime example of this is the iconic Kawarau Bridge Bungy. Established in 1988 by A.J. Hackett and Henry van Asch, it holds the distinction of being the world’s first commercial bungee jumping site. Suspended above the captivating blue waters of the Kawarau River, this platform challenges the brave and adventurous.

The Nevis Bungy is the ultimate thrill for bungee enthusiasts. At 134 meters (440 feet) above the Nevis River, it offers a breathtaking freefall with stunning views of the Southern Alps. This jump isn’t just about the excitement it’s an adventure that blends fear and exhilaration. A.J. Hackett, a pioneer in commercial bungee jumping, set high safety standards that ensure each jump is both thrilling and secure.

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2. Skydiving:

Skydiving is one of the summer adventure activities in Queenstown that provides a thrill of excitement but also a sense of freedom, wonder, and breathtaking landscape. As you soar through the skies, Queenstown’s majestic landscape unfolds beneath you like a vibrant canvas. Nestled in the heart of the Southern Alps, Skydive Queenstown delivers an unmatched experience for both seasoned skydivers and newcomers to the thrill of freefall.

For those new to skydiving, tandem jumps offer a thrilling yet safe introduction. Secured to an experienced instructor, you ascend to heights where the Southern Alps provide a breathtaking backdrop. As you and your instructor leap into the vast New Zealand sky, the rush of freefall at terminal velocity creates an unforgettable sensory experience, with the wind’s roar becoming a symphony and the stunning landscape unfolding beneath you.

Queenstown’s unique terrain, featuring lakes, mountains, and valleys, enhances this incredible descent, turning every jump into a personalized adventure. Safety comes first even though skydiving is an extreme sport. Queenstown’s operators adhere to strict safety protocols, use cutting-edge equipment, and employ highly skilled instructors to ensure every jump is both thrilling and secure.

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3. Jet Boating: Navigating Queenstown’s Exhilarating Waterways

In Queenstown, jet boating delivers a thrilling experience with its high-speed twists and turns through stunning landscapes. The Shotover Jet exemplifies this excitement, offering a heart-pounding ride across crystal-clear waters. As you board the sleek vessel, the anticipation builds, and then, with a powerful thrust, the boat races through the narrow Shotover Canyon. The ride is a breathtaking journey of close calls and dramatic spins, set against towering cliffs and sculpted rock formations, showcasing the raw beauty of the natural world.

For unforgettable summer adventure activities in Queenstown, the Skippers Canyon Jet provides a thrilling journey through pristine wilderness. Departing from historic Skippers Canyon, this jet boat ride navigates majestic mountains and remote vistas alongside the river’s flow, offering a genuine escape into the region’s backcountry. Founded by adventure pioneer A.J. Hackett, Queenstown’s jet boating culture combines excitement with safety. Expert drivers adhere to strict safety standards, delivering an exhilarating ride while ensuring passengers’ well-being through skilled navigation.

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4. Ziplining:

Ziplining is another of the summer adventure activities in Queenstown, an exhilarating way to see the stunning surroundings where the Southern Alps merge with unspoiled wildness in Queenstown. This exhilarating activity provides a new viewpoint on the alpine splendor in addition to an adrenaline rush. With a backdrop of the Queenstown skyline, Ziptrek Ecotours offers more than simply a thrilling ride.

Ziptrek’s ziplining adventure features a series of thrilling flying foxes that let you glide effortlessly through the forest canopy. Each zipline offers breathtaking views of the alpine landscape and Queenstown below, with additional treetop activities like suspension bridges and treehouses adding to the excitement. Safety is paramount, and Ziptrek Ecotours, along with other Queenstown operators, adheres to rigorous safety standards.

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5. Hiking and Adventure Trails:

Hiking and Adventure Trails

Hiking and adventure trails is one of the summer adventure activities in Queenstown. With routes for every ability level, the stunning backdrop encompasses peaceful lakes and majestic mountains. Starting near the Skyline Gondola, the Ben Lomond Track is particularly notable for its breathtaking vistas that go all the way up from the Remarkables to the Southern Alps. Everyone who hikes this trail, regardless of experience level, will have an amazing day.

The Routeburn Track, a top multi-day trek through Fiordland National Park, features stunning views of mountains, clear lakes, and dense beech forests. Each day on the Routeburn Track reveals a new adventure with varied ecosystems and breathtaking scenery.

Hikers can stay in huts and campsites, promoting camaraderie and a deep connection with nature. Queenstown’s trails are maintained to high safety standards with clear signage and regular safety briefings. Following trail etiquette, such as respecting fellow hikers and minimizing environmental impact, ensures a great experience for everyone.

6. Skiing and Snowboarding:

Ski and snowboarding is one of the summer adventure activities in Queenstown transformed into a snowy haven, inviting ski and snowboard enthusiasts to carve through pristine slopes surrounded by breathtaking alpine scenery. From beginners seeking their first snowy descent to seasoned powder hounds, Queenstown’s ski fields offer a winter wonderland that caters to all levels of expertise. Coronet Peak, standing as the oldest commercial ski area in New Zealand, is renowned for its premier skiing experiences.

Situated just a short drive from Queenstown, it offers not only exceptional slopes but also panoramic views of the Southern Alps. As you ascend the chairlift, the snowy expanse unfolds, promising a winter paradise for skiing enthusiasts. Queenstown’s ski fields prioritize safety through professional instruction and guiding services. Whether you’re a novice looking to master the basics or an experienced rider seeking advanced techniques, the ski schools and guiding services contribute to an environment where winter adventures are both thrilling and secure.

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7. Mountain Biking:

A haven for thrill-seekers and mountain bikers alike is among the summer adventure activities in Queenstown surrounded by breathtaking mountain scenery, it provides a wide variety of tracks, from easy strolls for novices to strenuous drops for experienced riders. Offering peaceful forest trails and lakeside views, the Fernhill Loop Track is perfect for riders looking for a more leisurely ride. The stunning views of Cecil Peak and the Remarkables can be found on this intermediate route, which is around Lake Wakatipu.

The Fernhill Loop Track is perfect for riders of all skill levels, making it an ideal choice for families and those seeking a relaxing ride. With gentle elevation changes and stunning views, it offers a picturesque mountain biking experience in Queenstown. For a more adventurous journey, the Skippers Pack Track provides a historic ride through rugged landscapes, river crossings, and remnants of old gold mining trails, offering a glimpse into Queenstown’s pioneering past.

Experienced riders who enjoy technical challenges like steep descents and rocky terrain will find the Skippers Pack Track exhilarating. This trail’s rugged wilderness offers an adventurous mountain biking experience. In Queenstown, safety is paramount, and riders are encouraged to follow trail etiquette.

8. Whitewater Rafting:

Whitewater rafting is among the summer adventure activities in Queenstown renowned for its thrilling water activities and adventure sports. Whitewater rafting here is a unique experience, blending adrenaline with the stunning scenery of the Southern Alps. The Shotover River, in particular, offers an iconic adventure with its intense rapids and dramatic canyon views. Rafters navigate narrow canyons, enjoying a dynamic mix of waves and twists against a backdrop of breathtaking beauty, making every trip a high-energy adventure.

For families looking for an easy introduction to whitewater rafting, the Kawarau River provides a perfect blend of excitement and scenic beauty. This family-friendly adventure offers mild rapids and breathtaking views around Queenstown. Rafters can enjoy the thrill of gentle rapids while taking in the natural splendor, and experience an extra thrill with the opportunity to jump off the historic Kawarau Bridge into the river. Safety is a top priority, with rigorous standards and thorough briefings ensuring a secure and enjoyable adventure.

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9. Helicopter Tours in Queenstown

Experience an amazing helicopter tour one of the summer adventure activities in Queenstown, which shows the breathtaking scenery of New Zealand’s South Island. A distinctive aerial perspective of the area’s pristine lakes, towering peaks, and scenic alpine scenery is offered by these sightseeing tours. A spectacular airborne ride is in store for passengers, beginning with a panoramic view of the Remarkables Mountain Range.

With each turn displaying the rough beauty of Queenstown’s hinterland, the helicopter flies over Skippers Canyon, revealing spectacular canyons and natural wonders. Soaring above Lake Wakatipu, the helicopter tour presents a breathtaking panorama of the glacial blue lake framed by majestic peaks.

As the helicopter heads toward Glenorchy and Paradise, passengers enjoy cinematic landscapes of lush greenery, pristine rivers, and expansive meadows. The tour culminates with a spectacular flight over Milford Sound, showcasing dramatic cliffs, cascading waterfalls, and pristine fjords. Safety is a top priority, with experienced pilots navigating state-of-the-art helicopters under rigorous standards.

10. Canyoning Adventure: Queenstown’s Cascading Symphony


Canyoning is one of the summer adventure activities in Queenstown that offers a thrilling experience. This adventure combines exploration and excitement as you navigate pristine canyons, discovering hidden creeks and immersing yourself in the natural harmony of rock and water.

Embarking on a canyoning adventure in Routeburn Canyon immerses you in the untamed wilderness. Surrounded by lush flora and towering rock faces, you’ll experience the rhythmic symphony of rushing water and your footsteps. The highlight of this adventure is abseiling down cascading waterfalls, where the refreshing spray and raw power of nature turn each descent into a unique, exhilarating note in the canyoning melody.

Dart River Canyon is the highlight of Queenstown’s canyoning adventure. Accessible only by helicopter, this remote canyon reveals stunning views of rugged cliffs, clear pools, and the winding Dart River. Canyoning here offers an exhilarating blend of exploration and natural beauty. Adventurers slide down smooth rock formations into pristine pools, each slide adding excitement to the experience. Safety is a priority, with strict standards ensuring secure descents. Novices are guided by experts who offer both instruction and insight into the canyon’s geological wonders, making the adventure both thrilling and educational.

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In conclusion, Queenstown is a haven for adventure enthusiasts, offering a wide range of activities that cater to thrill-seekers and nature lovers alike. From heart-pounding bungee jumps and serene paragliding flights to thrilling jet boat rides and scenic hikes, there’s something for everyone. Plan your summer adventure in Queenstown for 2024 and immerse yourself in the excitement and beauty of New Zealand’s adventure capital.

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