Things to do in Queenstown during summer

Queenstown's top summer activities & attractions

The summertime in Queenstown is a magical time of year. The crisp air, the deep natural greens, and the mirrored lakes, all surrounded by snow-dusted mountains is nature at its best.

Queenstown is nature’s playground. You can climb, jump off, and ride some of the most spectacular, film-worthy locations and landscapes in the world.

With so many options, we’ve broken down our top things to do in Queenstown in summer, so that you can make the most of your trip to our little slice of heaven on earth.


Queenstown Facts

  December January February
Temperature 2-25⁰C 4-29⁰C 3-28⁰C
Rainfall 64mm monthly total 65mm monthly total 45mm monthly total
Tourist arrivals Seasonal high Seasonal dip Seasonal uptake

Temperature Data: metservice.com

Tourist arrivals: stats.govt.nz

Summer in Queenstown has pretty much perfect weather conditions, which makes it an extremely popular time to visit. The days get hot but never too hot due to the South Island’s low latitude and the snow is well cleared except for the high altitudes on the mountains. But because of school holidays, tourism always spikes around this time.To make the most of the weather but beat most of the crowds, we suggest booking your trip during either January or February. By then the demand for flights and accommodation would have cooled down and the daily minimum and maximums are higher.


Queenstown is world-renowned for the incredible hiking in its surrounds. For those that are particularly fitness-focused, planning a hike during a holiday is a great way to keep active and keep the kilos at bay from those extra desserts.

Some of the more popular tracks are Routeburn Track, Hollyford Track, and the Queenstown Trail. If you’d like to combine a cultural experience with your journey, then it is highly recommended that you consider a guided walk. Walking guides give you a deeper understanding of the significance and history of the land, incorporating sacred sites and stories from the local Maori people. If you are interested, Guided Walks New Zealand and Hollyford Track offer some of the best guided walks in the Queenstown area.

People doing a hike


Our very own Shotover Jet is one of the best ways to spend a summer day in Queenstown. Famous with thrill-seekers the world over, our exclusive access to the Shotover Canyon makes this jetboat experience completely unique. Great for friends and family, there’s a reason why we are one of the most visited attraction in New Zealand.

Coming to Queenstown? Book a Shotover Jet experience today!

Two visitors enjoying the ride on Shotover Jet


When you’re in need of some respite from all the adventure and adrenaline, Queenstown also has some excellent shopping locations for when the doctor orders some retail therapy. Beach Street is a quaint shopping district with a bit of a periodic charm, great if you’re looking for something you’d find on a usual high street. But if you’re looking to get something a little quirky then you can’t go past the Remarkables Market and the Creative Queenstown Arts and Crafts Market.

Shoppers on Beach Street in Queenstown

Photo credit: Krzysztof Golik [CC BY-SA 4.0]


If you’re after some good food, then Q-Town won’t let you down. The locally famous, Fergburger, is crawling with hungry customers seven days a week and is a must for first timers. For a nice dinner, or any excuse to drink a selection of incredible local wines, then you can’t go past The Winery.

Summer is an amazing time to be in Queenstown so make sure to get outside and make the most of it!

Heading to Queenstown this summer? Make sure to make the most of your trip by booking a ride on Shotover Jet!

Fergburger in Queenstown

Photo credit: Florian Bugiel [CC BY-SA 2.0]