We are here to help you plan your whole Glenorchy stay, use our local knowledge to ensure you make the most of all Glenorchy has to offer. Your hosts have lived in Glenorchy for over 14 years and most of this time has been spent working in tourism. We make all the necessary calls, arrangements and weather checks to ensure you have a stress-free experience. We provide you with details of what to bring, trip duration, locations and suitability in regards to personal experience while taking into consideration the current weather conditions.
This is a free service just let us know what you would like to do and leave the rest to us!
We can make arrangements for you before to your arrival or once you have checked in. If you don't see the activity you are interested in on this page, just email us, and we will make suggestions to meet your needs.
- Advanced bookings are recommended for most of Glenorchy activities during peak season
Just 45 minutes from Queenstown, at the head of Lake Wakatipu lies Glenorchy, gateway to New Zealand's Mount Aspiring National Park and Te Wahipounamu, one of New Zealand's three World Heritage Areas.
Internationally recognised for its exceptional beauty and natural, untouched qualities, it has been showcased in the Oscar-winning Lord of the Rings trilogy as well as other big screen movies (see The Ride of the Rings) and is home to Dart Stables.
Dart Stables has been offering visitors to the area the opportunity of exploring Glenorchy and Paradise for over 20 years and has gained a well-earned reputation for providing memorable horse riding in this stunning part of New Zealand.
With over 50 horses of various breeds, knowledgeable and enthusiastic guides and a wealth of experience, Dart Stables can to provide great horse riding and treks for all levels of rider.
Come and take a ride through some of New Zealand’s most pristine countryside. Experience the unique tranquillity of the Glenorchy basin with the option of over 100,000 acres to ride on. We are a NEW ZEALAND owned and operated business that has opened our farm and surrounding areas for you to enjoy by horseback.
We can take you through glacial fed rivers with stunning backdrop that were used in “The Lord of the Rings Trilogy”, or showcase some of the rich histories of the area all while enjoying this experience on horseback.
High Country Horses was established and working with quality horses since 1987. We are lucky to own many breeds of equine including – Quarterhorse, Clydesdale X, Arab X, Thoroughbred X, Warmblood, New Zealand Stationbred and more. High Country Horses will cater for all abilities, from carriage rides for the very young or nervous through to the very experienced rider, we have the horse for you.
Join us as we provide you with the opportunity of capturing stunning images of some of New Zealand's most breathtaking scenery during a photographic tour at the Head of the Lake.
We'll make it easy for you to find stunning locations without wasting hours searching for the best spots. You will see lakes, rivers, beech forests, bush-lined valleys and sheer-sided mountains.
Whatever your level of expertise, this tailor-made tour is for you, and if your partner's not a photographer, bring them along, they will gain just as much as “Our goal is for every client to leave feeling they have genuinely experienced paradise!”
Ride Walk Explore Relax – The Paradise Trail
The Paradise Trail is a fully guided and supported boutique cycling and walking tour around the Glenorchy, Paradise, Head of the Lake area. The tour is over four days and three nights, staying at beautiful historic accommodation along the way.
The total distance ridden is approximately 70 km, and we are about enjoying the spectacular scenery rather than putting in big kilometers each day. Having said that, the fitter you are, the more you will enjoy it so we would recommend doing some training beforehand. We also leave the bikes behind one day to go walking on the Routeburn Track.
Glenorchy Journeys is a passenger transport and tour company that provides comprehensive travel options in the Otago region. We operate from our Glenorchy base – near the southern portal to the Mt. Aspiring National Park – so are well placed to provide transport access in to and out of the Routeburn, Greenstone/Caples, and Rees/Dart tracks.
If you are unsure of what to do in Queenstown, why not enjoy a guided walk on the magnificent Routeburn Track or take a scenic 4WD tour, where the views are endless and unforgettable. Our tours are personalized and kept small to provide excellent experiences for varying fitness and different interests.
Experience an authentic back-country tour through spectacular scenery, and enjoy the wonders of Mt Aspiring National Park – a wonderful mix of remote wilderness, majestic mountains and beautiful river valleys clothed in a beech forest.
There are plenty of things to do in Queenstown if you enjoy the great outdoors. Glenorchy Journeys specialises in providing transport for trampers, mountain bikers and skiers. We have a range of bus services with arrival and departure times arranged to suit you.
Car Relocation – Your Independent Transport Solution Value time, flexibility and convenience when planning your transport. It takes 5 hours to drive from one end of the Routeburn Track to the other. Drive your car to the start of the track at either end, and we will move it, so it’s waiting for you at the finish. Routeburn Track, Milford Track, Hollyford and others
Routeburn Essential’s – Transport, Food and Equipment Do you have the huts booked for the Routeburn track? Skip the hassle of arranging your food and hire equipment. We will even pack your bag for you! Just add your clothing and personal items.
Complete Experience Package – We’ll take care of everythingTell us your plans, and we will create the best track itinerary to meet your needs. Our Complete Experience package includes huts, food, hire equipment and of course transport – all you need is appropriate clothing, a moderate level of fitness and of course a sense of adventure! But there’s more…with Easyhike’s years of experience on the Routeburn, we’re here to answer any questions or concerns you may have. We have the right solutions to help make your Routeburn Trek a unique experience for you. No need to worry where, why, how, when about the Routeburn – Easyhike has the answer and will make it happen for you.
There are many choices for walks and longer hikes in and around the Glenorchy area. Click on the logo to go to the Department of Conservation's Guide to Walks and Hiking at the head of the lake.
Here are some of our favourites........
The Glenorchy Walkway - an easy 1-2 hr walk suitable for everyone. This walk takes you through the lagoon area with the opportunity of seeing bird life with stunning views.
Lake Sylvan 40 minutes one way or 1 hr 40 min returning via the tramline loop walk through beech forest and stop to enjoy the view overlooking the lake.
In the Water
Dart River Jet
Rippled Earth Kayaking
Guided Fishing Expeditions
Your Wilderness Jet trip will journey from Glenorchy at the head of the lake deep into the World Heritage area of Mt Aspiring National Park. Experience a unique combination of breathtaking scenery and exciting jet boating on braided, glacier-fed rivers. Learn from your guide about the area's history. Walk amongst the ancient beech forest, unchanged for 80 million years. Pass by scenes used in the Lord of the Rings movies to illustrate Middle Earth. An authentic New Zealand experience to an untouched world.
Funyak drift trip is an amazing journey deep into the Mt Aspiring National Park. Get involved with nature. Combine wilderness jet boating with unique ‘Funyak’ inflatable canoes for a fun way to explore the Dart River as well as hidden side streams, rock pools and dramatic chasms. Stop and enjoy a delicious wilderness picnic lunch before continuing in your ‘Funyak’ downstream to ‘Paradise’. Then travel a back-country route passing by locations used in movies to illustrate Middle Earth.
Join us on a kayak adventure across one of New Zealand's most scenic mountain lakes within the southern alps. Three great kayaking tours leave from Glenorchy shore's at the head of Lake Wakatipu, only 40 minutes from Queenstown.
Our Island Safari tour take you on a half day kayaking tour to the conservation reserves Pig and Pigeon Islands, exclusive to Rippled Earth these islands are a paddlers paradise.
From December to March we offer evening kayak tours across Lake Wakatipu for dinner at the historic Kinlcoch lodge. After dinner enjoy a quiet paddle back across on sun down.
The first pioneers explored this area by boat and by horse. Relive these historical experiences by joining us for our Island Safari tour followed by an unforgettable two hour horse ride through the Rees and Dart rivers with Dart Stables.
The trip includes Abseiling, Ziplines, Jumps, Slides and many more elements that make up the Canyoning experience. No experience is necessary but a good level of fitness is required.
With the Canyon being situated in the Mount Aspiring National Park the trip is not only an adrenaline activity but a great way to spend the day in some beautiful surroundings.
Fly Fishing Expeditions New Zealandoffer a variety of guided fly fishing expeditions. Glenorchy has some stunning fly fishing in the local area that is accessible either by 4wd, hiking and or helicopter or a combo of these. Depending on the weather it is possible that we may have to go further afield to get the best fishing opportunities on any given day.
Large alluvial riverbeds, grass and tussock lined streams, mountain rivers that cascade through sub-temperate rain forests, crystal clear spring creeks, small tarns and large lakes. These waters have large wily brown trout and some have a mix of rainbow trout as well. The average size of fish we catch is around the 20” mark (around 3 – 5lbs) and many well over that size. The opportunities for true NZ trophy trout on a fly fishing trip are always possible with 10lb+ fish being landed each year by lucky anglers. NZ Fly Fishing Expeditions are for anglers wanting to get the outstanding fly fishing New Zealand can offer. You understand a guided experience will allow you the best opportunities to realize your dreams of fly fishing New Zealand. The season starts on 1st October and typically the rivers will be high from snow melt dropping as the month’s progress. The fish will be well rested, as they will not have seen an angler for five months. Dec-March is the prime season with surface insect life at its peak and 70% of fish caught will be on a dry fly. The big, bad and bold fish may take a little extra encouragement and a nymph fished under a dry can often be the recipe for success. April sees the start of more changeable conditions with a good chance of Mayfly activity on some waters. Dry fly, terrestrial and nymphs are all used depending on the conditions. Early season: 1 Oct – 30 Nov Peak season: 1 Dec – 30 March Late season: 1st April – 31st May Heli-Access – We have many rivers that are only easily accessible by helicopter so if you prefer we can organize helicopter fly fishing expeditions to get into remote back country areas. If you really want to unlock some of the very best fishing in New Zealand, day outings by helicopter can be arranged by talking to your guide and worked to fit in with the best weather during your stay in then area. This allows unparalleled access to the wildest and most remote of streams, some of which may never have been fished by another angler all season.
In The Air
Heli Glenorchy offer scenic helicopter flights and commercial operations from Glenorchy Airfield, a breathtaking 40 minute scenic drive from Queenstown.
Let us show you this beautiful part of our world from an angle like no other. Fly by helicopter from Glenorchy, gateway to Paradise and Real Middle Earth into the untouched beauty of the Fiordland and Mount Aspiring National Parks, home of spectacular fiords and glaciers.
Glenorchy is doorstep to the Southern Alps, Mt. Aspiring and Fiordland National Parks, including the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit Trilogy film locations.
We keep our fleet small, the experience personal, our operation safe, and we deliver that once in a lifetime experience that will stay with you for the rest of your life.
Discover your own natural high while jumping from a plane 15,000ft above New Zealand's most stunning alpine scenery! Freefall at 200km/hour over Mt Aspiring and Fiordland National Parks, part of the Te Wahipounamu World Heritage Area - the place of greenstone.
Skydive Paradise offers you not only the most breath-taking scenery in the world, but also promises you the most personalised tandem skydiving adventure in New Zealand.
Sit back and enjoy as we drive you along Lake Wakatipu to our drop zone, located in Glenorchy. Known as ‘The Gateway to Paradise’, you may recognise Glenorchy as Middle Earth, with many “The Lord of The Rings” and “The Hobbit” movie settings nearby.
Experience includes: Complimentary transport from central Queenstown to Glenorchy, return Photo opportunities and commentary along this stunning road Up to 20 minutes scenic flight over this picturesque mountain vista Up to 60 seconds of freefall at 200km/hour – terminal velocity 5 minute under canopy parachute ride floating back down All equipment and outer clothing
The most scenic tandem skydive experience on Earth… welcome to Paradise!
Glenorchy Air is a New Zealand scenic flight airline based in Queenstown. We provide scenic flights from Queenstown and Glenorchy to many destinations around the South Island including Milford Sound, where you can also take the cruise. We also fly to Fiordland, Mt Cook, the Glaciers, the penguin and albatross colonies of Otago's east coast and to New Line Cinemas, Lord of the Rings movies location sites in the southern part of the south Island of New Zealand.
Milford Sound fly-scenic cruise-fly
You will have a window seat with unimpaired views as you fly to Milford Sound through a landscape of unbelievable grandeur and beauty.
Once in Milford Sound, your pilot will accompany you from the airport to the boat terminal. Everything is organised for you, you don't have to worry about a thing!
Step on board the Southern Discoveries Scenic Cruise, lasting 1hr 45mins, you will travel the length of the Fiord and out to the Tasman Sea on a modern catamaran with large viewing decks. Stopping at waterfalls and points of interest, the dolphins love playing in the waves of the catamaran!
After your cruise, your pilot will be waiting for you at the boat terminal to accompany you back to the airport for your return scenic flight to Glenorchy.