Wakatipu Walkways

Take a walk in paradise. Browse through the trails on offer in the Wakatipu basin.

Queenstown Hill Time Walk  |  Queenstown Gardens Walk  |  Frankton Arm Walkway  |  Kelvin Peninsula Walkway  |  Jack’s Point  |  Ti Ki Trail Town Link Trail  |  One Mile Creek Trail  |  Arrow River Trail  |  Bush Creek Trail Big Hill Trail  |  Sawpit Gully Trail  |  Arrowtown Millenium Walk  | Macetown 4WD road  |  Lake Hayes Walkway  |  Tobins Track

Looking for more detailed information on DOC tracks?   → See the Department of Conservation website

Queenstown Hill Time Walk

Wakatipu Walkways Queenstown Hill

Enjoy a walk on Queenstown Hill.

In the heart of Queenstown, this local favourite features spectacular views and the popular ‘Basket of Dreams’ sculpture.

This is a Council managed track crossing lease land.  Please respect the landowners property and stay on the trail at all times.

Time: 2-3 hours return to carpark
Grade: Medium to high fitness required
Start / Finish: Belfast street


Queenstown Gardens Walk

Wakatipu Walkways Queenstown Gardens

A leisurely stroll, this short walk can be done in your lunch break.  This trail is managed by the Council.

Time: 10-40 minutes
Grade: Easy
Start / Finish: Queenstown Lakefront (east end)


Frankton Arm Walkway

A local favourite, this well used lakeside walk has great views of the lake and mountains.  The trail is managed by the Council. Toilet facilities are located at the Frankton end of the track.

Wakatipu Walkways Frankton Track

Time:  1-1 ½ hours one way. 
Grade: easy
Start / Finish: Park Street to Frankton


Kelvin Peninsula Walkway

Another local favourite, this sunny lakeside walk has lots of great picnic and swimming spots along the way.  This trail is managed by the Council and links to another trail taking you all the way around to Jacks Point. Toilets are available at Frankton. 

Wakatipu Walkways Kelvin Peninsula Walkway

Time:  1 – 1 ½ hours one way
Grade: Easy
Start / Finish: Kawarau Bridge to Jardine Park.


Jack’s Point – Jardine Park to Jacks Point

Accessible from Jardine Park. A lovely lakeside walk, popular with mountain bikers. Trail notes are recommended – collect from the local Department of Conservation office – 37 Shotover Street, Queenstown. More information on the DOC Website.

Wakatipu Walkways Jacks Point

Time: 2 – 2 ½ hours return
Grade: Advanced - High Fitness Required
Start / Finish Jardine Park / Jack’s Point.

Tiki Trail

Starting at the gondola base building, a solid climb zig zags up underneath the pine forest to end up on the Skyline Road.  Follow Skyline Road to find other trails available throughout the forest.  

Wakatipu Walkways Tiki Trail

Time: 1 hour return
Grade: Medium fitness required.
Start / Finish: Gondola Base building


Town Link Trail

A pleasant stroll or bike ride linking Queenstown to the Fernhill residential area.  This trail can also be used to access the many trails in the Ben Lomond Forest.

Time: 15 minutes one way.
Grade: easy
Start / Finish: Cameron Place / Thompson Street


One Mile Creek Trail

A popular trail with walkers and cyclists, pack a picnic and relax by the restored powerhouse.  Trail notes are recommended, collect from the local Department of Conservation office – 37 Shotover Street, Queenstown.

Wakatipu Walkways One Mile


Arrow River Trail

This is a relaxing wander high above the Arrow River.  20 minutes into the trail you will pass a spot where the Sawpit Gully stream falls down a picturesque waterfall.  This is an ideal spot for a rest.   Not far from this you will reach the turn off to the Sawpit Gully trail, then 3 minutes on from this point, you will reach the Norman Smith footbridge where the trail joins the Macetown Road.  You can either retrace your steps back to Arrowtown, or return to Arrowtown via the Macetown 4WD road (some river crossings may be necessary).

Wakatipu Walkways Arrow River


50 minutes return from the bridge

Grade Easy
Start / Finish Butlers Green



Bush Creek Trail

Look out for stone walls in the centre of the river.  These were reportedly built by Chinese Miners in an effort to divert water from one side to the other.  They then worked the dry side, always profitably.  After 15 minutes the trail will lead up over a foot bridge where the Big Hill and Sawpit Gully trails start.  Veer left at this point and continue along Bush Creek to the old water supply intake (1881).  Retrace your steps back to Arrowtown

Wakatipu Walkways Bush creek

Time 1 hour return
Grade Easy
Start / Finish Butlers Green                                      


Big Hill Trail

This is a route rather than a well formed trail.  The inexperienced tramper is best to access Macetown via the River Trail.  This trail is on private land.  Please respect the landowners property at all times. 

Until the opening of the Macetown road in 1884, this trail was the main route over to Macetown.  It often took days to reach the town, battling harsh mountain weather and often an impassable track.  Today the trail follows the old bridle trail and climbs steadily from Bush Creek for an hour to reach Eichardt's Flat where there are grand views over the Arrow Basin and Lake Hayes.

Wakatipu Walkways Big Hill

Time 5-6 hours return
Grade Medium - high fitness
Start / Finish Bush Creek                             


Sawpit Gully Trail

This is a great loop with a veriety of scenery.  The Arrow River trail sidles high above the Arrow River before you reach the turn off to Sawpit Gully.  Once in Sawpit Gully itself parts of a water race are followed and piles of stone gold mining tailings are evident once down near the creek. The vegetation changes from beech forest pockets to tussock covered slopes interspersed with prickly matagouri and the sharp pointed speargrass, common in the Central Otago landscape.  Look for remains of an old stone hut on your right on a grassy terrace just before you begin to climb out of Sawpit Gully.  The cottage was home to a succession of miners and serves as a good resting place.

This walk crosses private land.  The landowner's property should be respected at all times.  Please remain on the trail.  Strictly no dogs or mountain bikes or trail bikes.  

Wakatipu Walkways Sawpit Gully

Time 2-3 hour loop
Grade Medium to high fitness          
Start / Finish Butlers Green


Arrowtown Millenium Walk

A 4.2km walkway along the banks of the Arrow River.  This trail was built by the Otago Regional Council in 1998 to commemorate 150 years of European settlement in Otago.  It travels downstream passing the site of the Criterion Quartz Mining company, one of the first quartz mines in New Zealand which began extracting gold from there in the 1860's.  It is a wide, easy track overhung with Willow, Sycamore and Larch trees. 

Wakatipu Walkways ArrowtownWalk

Time 1 hour
Grade Easy
Start / Finish Butlers Green                  


Macetown 4WD road

This is a 4WD road which crosses the river many times.  Vehicles should not go in alone.  The river can rise rapidly when raining and should not be accessed during the winter months. 

Walkers, bikers and horses should take care of vehicles on the road. 

There are many historical points of interest along the way, almost a story at every bend.  It's worthwhile purchasing a small booklet from the Lakes District Museum which describes the features along the way.  The book is called 'Macetown and the Arrow Gorge'.


Lake Hayes Walkway

A local favourite!  Easy grade walk on a well formed track providing outstanding views of the lake and surrounding area.  Please keep dogs on a leash around the wetlands area - its one of the few sites you can observe the Australasian Crested Grebe. 

Wakatipu Walkways Lake Hayes Walkway

Time 2 hour loop
Grade Medium fitness
Start / Finish        Showgrounds carpark or Lake Hayes Reserve


Tobins Track

A brisk walk to the top of Tobins Track will reward you with unsurpassed views of Arrowtown and the wider Wakatipu basin.

Wakatipu Walkways Tobins

Time 30 minutes each way
Grade Medium fitness required