Top things to do

Top Choice Museum in Dunedin

Toitū Otago Settlers Museum

Storytelling is the focus of this excellent interactive museum. The engrossing Māori section is followed by a large gallery where floor-to-ceiling portraits of Victorian-era settlers stare out from behind their whis…
Top Choice Live Music in Oamaru

Penguin Club

Tucked down an atmospheric alley off a 19th-century street, the Penguin’s unusual location matches its acts: everything from touring Kiwi bands to punky/grungy/rocky/country locals.
Top Choice Market in Dunedin

Otago Farmers Market

This thriving market is all local, all edible (or drinkable) and mostly organic. Grab felafels or an espresso to sustain you while you browse, and stock up on fresh meat, seafood, vegies and cheese for your journey.…
Top Choice Bar in Dunedin

Mou Very

Welcome to one of the world's smallest bars – it’s only 1.8m wide, but is still big enough to host regular DJs, live bands and poetry readings. There are just six bar stools, so patrons spill out into an adjacent la…
Top Choice Wildlife Reserve in Otago Peninsula

Nature’s Wonders Naturally

What makes the improbably beautiful beaches of this coastal sheep farm different from other important wildlife habitats is that (apart from pest eradication and the like) they're left completely alone. Many of the m…
Top Choice Modern NZ in Oamaru

Riverstone Kitchen

A riverstone fireplace and polished concrete floors set the scene for a menu that's modern without being overworked. Much of the produce is from the extensive on-site kitchen gardens (take a look, they're impressive…
Top Choice Seafood in Moeraki

Fleur’s Place

There's a rumble-tumble look about it, but this much graffitied timber hut houses one of the South Island's best seafood restaurants. Head for the upstairs deck and tuck into fresh shellfish, tender muttonbird and o…
Top Choice Bird Sanctuary in Oamaru

Blue Penguin Colony

Every evening the little tykes from the Oamaru little-penguin colony surf in and wade ashore, heading to their nests in an old stone quarry near the waterfront. Stands are set up on either side of the waddle route. …
Top Choice House in Dunedin


Although it's a youngster by European standards, this spectacular 1906 mansion provides a wonderful window into Dunedin's past. Entry is via fascinating guided tours; it pays to book ahead. There's also a pretty lit…
Top Choice Cafe in Dunedin

No 7 Balmac

We wouldn't recommend walking to this sophisticated cafe at the top of Maori Hill, but luckily it's well worth the price of a cab. The fancy cafe fare stretches to the likes of venison loin and dry-aged beef. If you…