Queenstown, New Zealand

Off the coast of Australia, sits New Zealand. It is small in stature but rich in cultural importance and international history. Queenstown, New Zealand is a great example of this combination. To be specific, Queenstown is now a resort city that was built in Otago, on the southwest side of New Zealand’s South Island.

During the early 1800s, the area was first explored by Europeans. The names of the two main explorers who oversaw the land first were William Gilbert Rees and Nicholas Van Tunzelman. After they surveyed the area they returned to their mother country. However, they found themselves coming back to the area that is now Queenstown and settling in in the year 1860. Their reason for returning was to establish a high-country farm in the area. It was situated where the modern town centre now lies. It was not for the Rees’ farming industry to be successful, however. Not long after the farm was established in 1860, gold was discovered in 1862 at the Arrow River. Because of the sudden influx of settlers attempting to take part of the New Zealand ‘gold rush’ so to speak, Rees turned his wool shed into a hotel. The hotel was called “The Queen’s Arms.’ It is still in existence, only now it is called ‘Eichardt’s.’Queenstown, New Zealand

It is not clear how the name of the town originated. It is common myth in the area that one gold miner, struggling to get rich, remarked that the town was fit for “Queen Victoria,” thus became the name Queenstown. However, there is not historical proof of this fact, only a legend.

Map of New ZealandToday, Queenstown is basically known for its natural beauty and the adventure tourism that draws people to the area because of it. Skiing, boating, jet-skiing, white water rafting, rock climbing, bungee cord jumping are just a few of the extreme sports that take place in the area. Skateboarding, mountain biking, fly fishing and tramping are all important promotional themes that are pushed in the area. People from all over the world travel to Queenstown to ski at the four main skiing resorts that are located here: Cardona Alpine Resort, The Remarkables, Treble Cone and Coronet Peak. The Waiorau Snow Farm is also a very popular skiing retreat for people who are craving a more quaint experience.

The TSS Earslaw is a 100 year-old steamship that still provides tourists with rides out into the bay. The hotels of Queenstown have been gaining international renown for a long time. It is starting to become a very popular honeymoon destination. There is also a vibrant and exciting nightlife scene that can be found in the downtown district of the city. Part of the charm of the local culture is its reputation for being a city with many dining and wine tasting options. Queenstown actually lies on the edge of a wine producing town, giving it access to some of the best wines in the country. There are also many beautiful natural wonders to visit, as well.


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