Queenstown is largely devoid of traditional landmarks and period buildings, with most of the allure coming from the beautiful natural surroundings and the genuine feel of the place. Although not right in the town, Bob's Peak and The Remarkables mountain ranges are musts to gain a perspective over the town.
Bob's Peak can be accessed almost directly from downtown via the Skyline Gondola and has one or two fun attractions itself, including a luge ride and bungee jump. Lake Wakatipu is also a must-see, while Underwater World and the Kiwi and Birdlife Park are alternatives to the action-packed side of Queenstown.
The top attraction in Queenstown for the family is the Skyline Gondola ride that goes from the town to Bob's Peak. It has the best, most accessible views over Queenstown and you can do it one-way and walk back down via the hiking trail. Up top are incredible views, along with a classy restaurant and a bungee jump.
These are the high peaks that overlook Queenstown from the southeast. Along with amazing views, where you can see the city between Lake Wakatipu and Bob's Peak, and Coronet Peak in the other direction, is good skiing and hiking.
Situated just to the northwest of downtown Queenstown and within walking distance of everything is the Kiwi and Birdlife Park, which also comes with a reproduction of a Maori hunting village. The bird park is beautifully done and contains a range of birds from the region, while the Maori village puts on a dinner and traditional dancing.
Located right in town on the Main Town Pier of Queenstown Mall, Underwater World takes a look at the fish of the region. There are large glass panels from which to see the fish feeding in their natural habitat at about 20 feet under Lake Wakatipu. Be sure to look for the diving ducks.
Kiwi Magic is a cinema at The Mall that shows a short film (30 minutes) on Queenstown's extreme sports. It is perfect for those folks and kids who won't get to try out things like bungee jumping and can easily be combined with a wander around town.
The lake that borders Queenstown is an attraction in itself. It is flanked by the town and wharf and you can tour it aboard the classic steamer, TSS Earnslaw. Cruises go in the day and in the evening. Lake Wakatipu is the South Island's largest body of water and even has its own tides.
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