Activities

Shuttles from Queenstown to the Routeburn, Rees-Dart and Greenstone & Caples Tracks pass through Glenorchy; you can be picked up here along the way. Other activities on offer include farm tours, fly-fishing and guided photography tours; enquire at the Queenstown i-SITE or the Glenorchy Information Centre & Store.

Tramping

DOC's Head of Lake Wakatipu and Wakatipu Walks brochures detail more than 60 day walks in the area. Both brochures can be downloaded from the DOC website (www.doc.govt.nz). Two of the best short tracks are the Routeburn Flats (three hours), which follows the first section of the Routeburn Track, and Lake Sylvan (one hour, 40 minutes).

Another good wander, especially if you like your birds, is the Glenorchy Walkway, which starts in the town centre and loops around Glenorchy lagoon, switching to boardwalks for the swampy bits. It's split into the Southern Circuit (30 minutes) and the Northern Circuit (one hour) and there are plenty of seats along the way, well positioned for views over the water to the mountains.

Before setting out on any longer tramps, call into DOC's Queenstown visitor centre for the latest track conditions and to purchase detailed maps. Another good resource is Lonely Planet’s Hiking & Tramping in New Zealand.

For track snacks or meals, stock up on groceries in Queenstown, though you'll also find a small selection of trail-perfect fodder at Mrs Woolly's General Store. Track transport is at a premium during the Great Walks season (late October to April), so try to book in advance.

Routeburn Track

Routeburn Shelter to Routeburn Flats Hut

Estimated Walking Time (hr)

1½-2½

Routeburn Flats Hut to Routeburn Falls Hut

Estimated Walking Time (hr)

1-1½

Routeburn Falls Hut to Lake Mackenzie Hut

Estimated Walking Time (hr)

4½-6

Lake Mackenzie Hut to Howden Hut

Estimated Walking Time (hr)

3-4

Howden Hut to the Divide

Estimated Walking Time (hr)

1-1½

Greenstone & Caples Tracks

Greenstone car park to Mid Caples Hut

Estimated Walking Time (hr)

Mid Caples Hut to McKellar Hut

Estimated Walking Time (hr)

6-7

McKellar Hut to Greenstone Hut

Estimated Walking Time (hr)

4½-6½

Greenstone Hut to Greenstone car park

Estimated Walking Time (hr)

3-5

Rees-Dart Track

Muddy Creek to Shelter Rock Hut

Estimated Walking Time (hr)

6-8

Shelter Rock Hut to Dart Hut

Estimated Walking Time (hr)

4-6

Dart Hut to Daleys Flat Hut

Estimated Walking Time (hr)

5-7

Daleys Flat Hut to Paradise

Estimated Walking Time (hr)

5½-7½

Sleeping

Glenorchy has a handful of accommodation options and there's a guest lodge, youth hostel, DOC campsite and stylish new ecocabins at Kinloch, a 26km drive from Glenorchy.

A large campground (called Camp Glenorchy), billed as NZ's first net-zero-energy campground, was being constructed beside Mrs Woolly's General Store at the time of writing. It's expected to open in 2018.

Eating

Glenorchy has a few cafes and a pub, and there's also a cafe-bistro at Kinloch Lodge. If you want to add some splash to the dining experience at Kinloch, call ahead and arrange a boat pick-up at the Glenorchy wharf ($15 per person, minimum two people).

Drinking & Nightlife

Glenorchy has a pub, but if it's nightlife you're after, you've come to the wrong end of the lake. Head back to Queenstown.