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Stay in queenstown or in nearby town?

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Croydon North...
posts: 3
Stay in queenstown or in nearby town?

My husband and 2 kids (1 and 2.5yo) are coming to Queenstown in the last week of August (Mon 27th). I have to attend a conference from Fri 31st at Rydges lakeside (but will not be staying there). We are looking for apartment type accomodation (prefer 2 room) for under $200 per night and planning on cooking most meals as MUCH easier with 2 kids.

Q1. Do people think we should stay in Queenstown or hire a car and stay out of Queenstown i.e Arrowtown or similar? Is it much cheaper/ nicer to do that?

Q2. If staying in Queenstown, just wondering if people can reccommend anywhere? I'm thinking the Alexis?

Q3. Can anyone recommend any MUST DO? Remembering it is with 2 toddlers?

Thanks for any help - I actually know nothing about Queenstown!

posts: 4,635
reviews: 32
1. Re: Stay in queenstown or in nearby town?

Hi Smart S,

Whils't your price range may be achievable, at the time of the year you are visiting it is during the busy ski season, albeit outside the school holidays, so availability will be an issue.

I would stay in Queenstown and hire a car as you are close to most shops and many of the attractions. The "best" supermarket is at the "Remarkables" shopping centre adjacent to the airport, not in the CBD a car is neede if you are staying in Queenstown. Be aware that Queenstown has some very steep streets that do become slippery with ice, an issue with the children, and parking is at a premium. I would look for somewhere near the lake/pier where the children can feed the waterfowl and that has parking as you can easily walk from this area to most place you will want to go.

Good Luck,

Edited: 7:03 pm, June 10, 2012
Nelson, New Zealand
Destination Expert
for South Island
posts: 20,511
reviews: 45
2. Re: Stay in queenstown or in nearby town?

Welcome to the forum :)

Queenstown has a high number of apartments and motels. Take a look at www.wotif.com for availability. As mentioned, it is ski season so often the more affordable options are fully booked.

I think you will find prices in Queenstown less expensive than Arrowtown which provides more boutique style accommodation.

Your kids will love playing -

- in the snow - though you will most likely have to drive up a mountain to reach the snowline. It doesn't often snow in town.

- on the lakefront and feeding the ducks.

Take the farm tour at Walter Peak Station on the TSS Earnslaw www.realjourneys.co.nz/Main/TSSEarnslaw_WP/

Enjoy :)

Croydon North...
posts: 3
3. Re: Stay in queenstown or in nearby town?

Thanks - will definately stay in Queenstown then! We were trying to not hire a car but it looks like you think we will need it with the kids? I did see someone else post a question about the farm tour so I think we will put some time aside for that! Unfortunately I only found out a week ago that I was going - or else would have booked accom MUCH earlier!

Anything else anyone has to add I would greatly appreciate it :-)

posts: 4,635
reviews: 32
4. Re: Stay in queenstown or in nearby town?


Don't forget to hire chains along with the car and ask to be instructed in how to fit them, if you are going to take the children to the snow. Coronet Peak is only 20mins drive from Queenstown. With luck you won't need the chains but it is an offence not to carry them.


South Island
Destination Expert
for South Island
posts: 1,233
5. Re: Stay in queenstown or in nearby town?

If you don't want to hire a car Queenstown has a much improved public bus system ( conectabus) that services all the out of way places including Remarkables Park and Arrowtown.

Edited: 4:28 am, June 11, 2012
Brisbane, Australia
posts: 387
reviews: 27
6. Re: Stay in queenstown or in nearby town?

I'm not sure you would need a hire car in Queenstown, or maybe only for part of the time when you want to get out of town. We stayed on the lakefront (breakfree) and found all we needed to be within an easy walk, and I am a pretty lazy walker :-) The gondola, cruise boats, bus to Coronet peak, walks around the lake, were all close by, along with plenty of restaurants and convenience stores, chemists, etc. A bigger supermarket was a bit further, but not out of the reach for an adult to walk to and get groceries. Enjoy your holiday, it's a place I would certainly love to return to.

Croydon North...
posts: 3
7. Re: Stay in queenstown or in nearby town?

Thanks everyone! I managed to get a 2 bed apartment at Alexis Apartments for about $170 per night - pretty happy with that as the reviews on here seem complimentary towards it!

We are still deciding whether to hire a car or not. The ice and hills do not seem like a good mix for the kids. Plus, I'm a little worried it may be really cold to be walking around with a 1 year old and a 2.5 year old - even if they are rugged up? But, we really are on a tight budget so saving a few hundred dollars would be great.

Thanks for the tip on snow chains - I didn't realise it. Am I correct in thinking NZ law is the same as AUS law in that children do not have to be in a baby seat in a taxi?

Thanks everyone - REALLY appreciate the help

8. Re: Stay in queenstown or in nearby town?

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