Best Queenstown Walks & Where to Treat Yourself Afterwards

Two people walking along a lake on a sunny day.

The Queenstown region is a hiker’s paradise, with an abundance of tracks etched into its incredible landscape. From easy-going paths skirting the lake’s shores, to rugged alpine terrains and serene trails through native bush, we’ve put together 10 of our favourite picturesque walks for every level.

And because no good adventure is complete without a culinary indulgence (we’re not talking about the muesli bar stashed in your pocket), we’ve paired each trail with some delicious recommendations, including great coffee, flaky pastries, crafty brews and hearty meals. So lace up your boots and let’s get going…

The black exterior of The Bespoke Kitchen, Queenstown.

The Bespoke Kitchen, Queenstown

Bob’s Cove Track + Bespoke Kitchen pastries

Duration: 3km loop // 1.5 hours return. Difficulty: Easy

With the allure of a secluded lakeshore, you’ll be jumping out of bed for this trek. Before heading out to Bob’s Cove, make a pit stop at Bespoke Kitchen for freshly brewed coffee and stock up on some pastries for your post-walk treat. Winding through beech forests and manuka groves, the trail offers nature’s finest symphony, with bellbirds, tui and kereru providing the soundtrack. From Picnic Point peninsula, things get a little steep but the panoramic views of lakes and mountains are well worth it. If the sun is shining and you’re feeling brave, bring your togs for a dip at the cove.

A boat on a lake on a sunny day.

Perky's Floating Bar, Queenstown

Mt Crichton Loop Track + Ferg Burger on Perky’s Floating Bar

Duration: 3km loop // 1.5 hours return. Difficulty: Easy

The Mt Crichton track offers an energising trek through lush native bush, alongside trickling rivers and waterfalls, and lovely views of Lake Dispute and Lake Whakatipu. You’ll also discover Sam Summers hut, which dates back to the 1930s and provides a fascinating insight into the region’s gold mining history. Upon returning to town, pop in an order at Fergburger and gobble it down aboard Perky’s Floating Bar, accompanied by a refreshing pint or swish cocktail.

Tiki Trail + a pint from Atlas Beer Cafe

Duration: 2.1km // 1 hour. Difficulty: Medium

Starting at the bottom of the gondola, the Tiki Trail is a short but steep climb with sweet scenery waiting at its peak. While it’s an achievement in itself, those seeking an additional challenge can also continue on to the Ben Lomond Track, a demanding full day hike that requires a bit more preparation. If you’re stopping at Bob’s Peak, there’s a few options for your descent: bungy jumping, ziplining or a relaxing trip on the gondola. This is all very thirsty work, so we recommend heading back down to Atlas Beer Cafe for a pint with the locals.

Queenstown Gardens Trail + Coffee from Yonder

Duration: 3.1km // 1.5 hour return. Difficulty: Easy (with wheelchair access)

Pack your reusable coffee cup and swing by Yonder for a takeaway coffee, before beginning your stroll around the peaceful Queenstown gardens. Established in 1866, there are plenty of lush pockets to wander through, including rose gardens, playgrounds, and even areas to play frisbee golf, bowls or tennis. Follow the trail around the peninsula's edge for breathtaking views along the way.

Frankton Track + Frankton Favourites

Duration: 7.3km one way // 2 hours. Difficulty: Easy

A delightful and accessible track for all seasons, this scenic route starts at Queenstown Bay Beach and winds around the Queenstown Gardens peninsula before tracing the lakeshore into Frankton. A great way to stretch the legs while taking in the picturesque setting, the culinary offerings in Frankton add an extra allure. Indulge in brunch or lunch at The Boat Shed Café, sip a pint of Mischievous Kea IPA from Altitude Brewing or escape to Sherwood for a one-of-a-kind dining experience. 

Queenstown Hill Time Walk + burgers at World Bar

Duration: 1.5km // 3 hours return. Difficulty: Moderate - Advanced

Conveniently starting close to the centre of town, the Queenstown Hill Time Walk is a popular choice for those seeking a stroll without hopping in the car. A chance to work your legs as much as your brain, six informational plates offer insights into Queenstown’s pioneering history, from Māori settlements to the gold rush and the ingenuity of tourism ventures. Enjoy sweeping views of The Remarkables, Cecil Peak, Lake Whakatipu and the Kawarau River. On your descent, head straight to World Bar for a well-deserved burger – you may even time your arrival with some live music.

Hands reaching for a pizza.

Canyon Brewing, Queenstown

Devil’s Creek Track + pizza and beers at Canyon Brewing

Duration: 12.4km // 5-6 hours. Difficulty: Moderate - Advanced

Well, well, well… After something a little more advanced are we? Look no further than the Devil’s Creek Track. Starting at Skippers Saddle car park off Coronet Peak Road, it’s an arduous climb up through alpine terrain – but we know you’ve got it in you. At the summit, soak up views of the Whakatipu Basin and Shotover River – perfect for capturing brag-worthy photos. Back on solid ground, celebrate your achievement with top beers and sourdough pizza at Canyon Brewing. The team here is driven by innovation and sustainability, and became one of the first breweries in Aotearoa to grow their own barley in an effort to reduce their footprint. Oh, and the views overlooking the river aren’t too shabby either.

Lake Hayes Loop + Wolf Coffee Roasters

Duration: 8km // 2 hour loop. Difficulty: Easy

This is for those days where you want to clear your mind and unwind with a serene lakeside stroll. Just a short 15-minute drive from Queenstown, the track offers multiple access points. If you’re beginning your journey from Arrowtown, don’t miss the opportunity to grab a coffee (and a fresh donut) from Wolf Coffee Roasters, perfectly complementing the postcard views every step of the way.

People dining outside Fork and Tap in Arrowtown.

The Fork and Tap, Arrowtown

Arrow River Trail + The Fork & Tap feed

Duration: 4.2km // 1 hour return. Difficulty: Easy

Easily mistaken for a scene from a fairytale, the Arrow River Trail meanders through a woodland forest alongside a flowing stream. While the one-hour loop may suit your pace, adventurous souls have the option to veer off to Sawpit Gully for a 3-hour return trip. For those seeking an overnight experience, embark on the 15km trail and set up camp in the abandoned (but charming!) gold mining town of Macetown. Back on the main streets of Arrowtown, The Fork & Tap have you sorted with a hearty and delicious pub feed.

Gibbston River Trail + Mt Rosa Wine Tasting

Duration: 8.7km one way // 3-5 hours. Difficulty: Easy

A walk towards wine? Say no more. The Gibbston River Trail is for those who appreciate the great outdoors, so long as there’s a few fine drops along the way. Starting at the AJ Hackett bungy car park, quickly bid farewell to the adrenaline junkies and seek your own thrills amongst the vines. Pick up a picnic hamper from Gibbston Valley Cheeses to sustain you along the way and round off your adventure with a wine tasting experience at Mt Rosa. Alternatively, renting an e-bike is a popular way to experience the region, which includes a shuttle pickup to take you back to Queenstown.

Neat Queenstown Places

Bespoke Kitchen

A flatlay of colourful plates of food and coffee.
Place Queenstown
Cafes key icon.

When the hustle and bustle of central Queenstown gets too much, there’s a nearby oasis offering a moment of tranquillity.

Atlas Beer Cafe

The exterior of Atlas Beer Cafe Queenstown.
Place Queenstown
Bars key icon.

Tucked away behind Steamer Wharf on the edge of Lake Whakatipu, Queenstown’s Atlas Beer Cafe prides itself on maintaining a small footprint while going big on the...

Kappa

The inside of Kappa restaurant in Queenstown.
Place Queenstown
Restaurants key icon.

Next time you’re walking down Ballarat Street, look up in search of a small piece of Japanese paradise.

Dorothy Browns Cinema

A hand holding a pink cocktail with a slice of lemon.
Place Queenstown
Theatre and performance key icon.

Answer us this: When was the last time your at-home movie experience included a gin bar, artisanal cheese platters, a quaint bookshop, and a friendly resident cat named Sox?...