Lakes and Boating

Roto me te Whakaeke Poti

There are three main lakes in our district – Lake Wakatipu, Lake Wānaka and Lake Hāwea. These are all popular spots for boating, swimming and other water sports.

Lake Wakatipu Lake Wānaka Lake Hāwea Clutha River Harbourmasters Flooding Lagarosiphon

COVID-19 updates

During COVID-19 Alert Level 1, make sure your recreational vessel, no matter how big or small, stays safe. Do this by following the prep, check, know message - prepare your boat, check your gear and know the rules before you’re on the water.

As well as following all public health measures still in place at Alert Level 1, boaties are encouraged to remember the five simple precautions from the Boating Safety Code:

  • Wear your lifejacket

  • Take two waterproof ways to call for help

  • Check the marine weather forecast

  • Avoid alcohol

  • Be a responsible skipper.

For more information on Alert Level 1, head to and for all things boating, head to or

In this district it is compulsory to wear a life jacket

  • at all times in adverse weather
  • at all times in any vessel under 6 meters

More boating resources: 

Lake Wakatipu

Lake Wakatipu is New Zealand's third largest lake, being 80 kilometres long and covering 293 square kilometres. It has an average depth of 300 metres for over half its length, with temperatures ranging from 8 - 10 degrees celsius.

Lake Wānaka

Lake Wānaka is New Zealand's fourth largest lake, covering 180 square kilometres. The lake is 45.5 kilometres long, 11.6 kilometres across at its widest, and up to 300 metres deep. Water temperature ranges from 8 - 10 degrees celsius.

Lake Hāwea

Lake Hāwea is 35 kilometres long and separated from Lake Wānaka by a narrow isthmus. Although narrow, Lake Hāwea plummets to a depth of 392 metres.

Clutha River

The Clutha River / Mata-Au is the second longest river in New Zealand and the longest in the South Island. It flows south-southeast 338 kilometres through Central and South Otago from Lake Wanaka in the Southern Alps to the Pacific Ocean, 75 kilometres south west of Dunedin. 

Queenstown Harbourmaster

Marty Black
Southern Monitoring Services

Marty Black (Harbourmaster)
TEL: 03 442 3445
MOB: 027 434 5289

Dave Black (Deputy Harbourmaster)
TEL: 027 414 2270

Wānaka Harbourmaster

Craig Blake
Southern Monitoring Services


Want to check the lake level? Click here for the latest information.

Lagarosiphon management

Lagarosiphon is a pest plant present in some of Otago's waterways. You can help prevent its spread by checking your fishing and boating gear to make sure you don't take it away with you. 

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