The winter season in New Zealand is great. I settled in Queenstown for six months - it wasn't too hard to find a job and reasonably price accommodation. Wherever you live in Queenstown you seem to have a stunning view of the mountains and Lake Wakatipu.
There are plenty of jobs on the mountains, although I chose to work in the town and very quickly picked up work in a poplar retail store. Here I made loads of great friends. Everyone I know who has headed to Queenstown has had no problems picking up work and finding accommodation.
The ski areas possibly aren’t the size of the European or North American resorts, but they are varied with a mix of off-piste and groomed blue and black runs.
New Zealand doesn't get the tourism Europe does, so invariable you don't have to queue for ski lifts. During week days the mountains are pretty empty.
There a three main mountains for Queenstown:
Possibly the largest of the three and the most poplar. Coronet peak has good lift technology and snowmaking facilities. The terrain is really fun with large moguls at the peak and plenty of steep drops, mainly black runs with a very busy blue run comically named the M1.
Coronet Peak is the only mountain to offer night skiing, great fun!!!!!
The ski area is set in a unique and dramatic location within the Remarkables mountain range. The snow is really good, but the down side to the Remarkables is that it only offers very short runs, the longest being 1.5km. However if you’re a beginner to skiing, boarding or to pipe parks, the Remarks is where you want to be. Plus for added fun there is a tubing park.
Cardrona offers some really good skiing, wide slopes and possibly New Zealand's biggest pipe park. I really recommend spending a few days exploring Cardrona.
However Cardrona is a little out of Queenstown (45min drive) and isn't included on the Queenstown ski pass.
If you’re in the area for a while there are plenty of reachable ski fields worth a weekend trip.
Season ski passes are very reasonable priced if you buy them six months in advance, as the ski season draws near the price goes up.
Queenstown is not just about skiing, but all adventure sports. It really is New Zealand's adventure capital and the home to the first bungy jump. There is plenty to do: Mountain biking, white water rafting, jet boating, sky diving, aerobatics, power gliding, luging and much more...
By night Queenstown is very lively with plenty of bars to visit. Too many times I saw the sunrise over Lake Wakatipu!!
Queenstown is very different to your average winter resort, I personally loved Queenstown and made many friends there… if I could I'd do it all again!!!!
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