Welcome to Glenorchy


There's often a sense of déjà vu when you arrive in Glenorchy, with areas around the town featuring heavily in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, as well as being the setting for Jane Campion's Top of the Lake BBC series.

The town centre sits slightly back from the lake, so be sure to wander down to the wharf, where the Humboldt Mountains rise from the opposite shore.


Top experiences in Glenorchy

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Glenorchy activities

$136.84 Day Trips & Excursions

Glenorchy Movie Locations Tour: The Lord of the Rings

After pickup from your Queenstown hotel, enjoy a scenic drive by 4WD to Glenorchy, passing instantly recognizable locations from The Lord of the Rings films like Ithilien Camp, Isengard, Forest of Amon Hen and Lothlorien.Stopping at various viewpoints so you can take photos, your driver will provide informative and interesting facts during the drive, giving you a better sense of connection with the surroundings.Then continue to the rural region of Paradise, approximately 12 miles (20 km) northwest of Glenorchy. Here you'll discover the location of the Forest of Lothlorien and find a picturesque village at the head of Lake Wakatipu known as the ‘Gateway to Paradise’. On your way back to Queenstown, stop at 12 Mile Delta to explore the location of the Ithilien Camp -- the no-man's land between Gondor and Mordor.Along the way, enjoy some light refreshments and see filming locations from other movies like X-Men Origins: Wolverine and The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian!

$266.03 Water Sports

Dart River 'Funyak' Canoe and Jet Boat Tour from Queenstown

Travel by coach to Glenorchy, located 28 miles (45 kilometers) from Queenstown. You'll enter the Mount Aspiring National Park, a region characterized by towering mountains, dense forests and of course, winding river valleys – perfect for exploring by canoe and boat!After a comprehensive safety briefing get kitted up with equipment: lifejacket, wetsuit with booties, fleece and a dry bag. Then, hop aboard your jet boat and hold on tight as your guide speeds you through the waters of the Dart River, while explaining the countryside’s highlights. Once you've ventured deeper into the wilderness of the park, swap the jet boat for your inflatable canoe (seats 2 or 3 people max) and paddle out behind your guide in a flotilla, exploring the hidden side streams, rock pools and chasms that make the Dart River so special. Stop for a buffet lunch laid out on tables in a grassy area and surrounded by the gloriously isolated scenery of Mount Aspiring National Park – featured in the Oscar-winning films of The Lord of the Rings series.After lunch, continue along the Dart River in your canoe, soaking up the gorgeous countryside and watching out for rare fauna and wildlife like red deer and yellow-crowned parakeets. At the end of this exciting adventure hop back on board your coach and relax on the return journey to Queenstown.

$48.42 Outdoor Activities

Lake Wakatipu Cruise and Mt Nicholas High Country 4WD Tour

From the docks in Queenstown, step aboard your deluxe catamaran to cruise across gorgeous Lake Wakatipu, which reaches depths of 1,300 feet (400 meters). Surrounding mountain ranges create a dramatic backdrop to the dark blue lake. Your boat is equipped with warm indoor seating, large viewing windows and outdoor decks that offer panoramic views of the Southern Alps, Glenorchy, Mt Earnslaw, and the Remarkables mountain range. An onboard cafe serves beverages and snacks for purchase. Listen to informative commentary from your captain about the sights you see from the boat. Atmospheric pressures cause the lake’s water levels to rise and fall about 5 inches (12 centimeters) every few minutes. A Maori legend attributes the phenomenon to the heartbeat of a giant who lies asleep in the depths of the lake. A slumbering giant might prove hard to find, but one could say that Elves have been here. Lothlórien scenes filmed for The Lord of the Rings movie were staged here at Lake Wakatipu. Disembark from your catamaran at the Mt Nicholas High Country Station on the western shore of the lake and then visit a family-run merino sheep farm where you can learn about raising sheep and making wool. Then transfer to a 4WD vehicle to scale the mountains with stops at spectacular spots where you can enjoy short walks. Your cruise on Lake Wakatipu, farm and high country 4WD tour ends upon your return to the docks in Queenstown.

$491.22 Day Trips & Excursions

Milford Sound with Flight, Cruise, Jet Boat from Queenstown

You will be notified an hour prior to departure time if the weather is appropriate to proceed. Your complimentary transfer from your Queenstown accommodation will pick you up 5 minutes later. You can drive out to the Hangar as well if you would like.After checking in for the flights you will be taken on a 40-minute scenic plane flight to Milford Sound. You will experience majestic views of the Fiordland National Park including mountains, lakes and fiords.After landing in Milford Sound you will them meet your boat cruise and experience Milford Sound up close while enjoying a full length 2-hour cruise of Milford Sound.Once your cruise finishes you will be then taken to the Milford Sound Airstrip where you will be met by your Aircraft and taken on a 40-minute scenic flight back to Glenorchy.After a short break you will be taken on the Dart River jet boat safari which includes 1-hour on the jet boat, a 30-minute native forest walk and a 4WD coach trip back to Glenorchy. After the safari you will then be taken back to your accommodation on the coach from Glenorchy.

$181.75 Outdoor Activities

Dart River Jet Boat Ride and Wilderness Jet from Queenstown

After hotel pickup in Queenstown, travel to the township of Glenorchy, located on the edge of UNESCO World Heritage-listed Mt Aspiring National Park. This 28-mile (45-km) journey will show you some of New Zealand's most spectacular scenery. The region has been used as the setting for many feature films including The Lord of the Rings and The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian. Your guide will point out some of these locations along the way. From Glenorchy, embark on a jet-boat ride down the Dart River. Enjoy thrilling jet spins as you navigate the ever-changing shallow channels of this glacier-fed, braided river system, and listen as your expert boat driver highlight points of interest that give this area its unique natural and cultural importance. Next, discover the surrounding vegetation and spot wildlife on a leisurely walk through an ancient forest with your naturalist guide, who will share intimate knowledge of the area. Then, travel along a backcountry route and enjoy a fun off-road adventure! Learn more about this fascinating area and stop to view some of New Zealand’s most epic scenery. After your wilderness adventure, enjoy a relaxing drive back to Queenstown.

$27.37 Cruises, Sailing & Water Tours

Lake Wakatipu Catamaran Cruise from Queenstown

Meet at a convenient downtown location in Queenstown to board your spacious catamaran for a nearly 2-hour tour of gorgeous Lake Wakatipu in the morning or early afternoon. Carved out by an enormous glacier in the last ice age, the lake reaches depths of 1,300 feet (400 meters). Mountains surround the water, providing a dramatic backdrop to the deep blue lake. Experience this stunning locale from your boat, which is equipped with warm indoor seating, large viewing windows and outdoor decks that offer unobstructed views from either side of the vessel. An onboard cafe serves beverages and snacks for purchase. Head to Mt Nicholas High Country Station, located on the western shore of the lake, with a stop at Bob's Cove to view flora and fauna up close from the boat. Soak up spectacular views looking towards Glenorchy, Mt Earnslaw, the Southern Alps and the Remarkables mountain range.Your captain provides informative commentary about the landmarks and native wildlife as you cruise. You are also welcome to join the captain in the wheelhouse. Learn about atmospheric pressures that cause the lake’s water level to rise and fall about 5 inches (12 centimeters) every few minutes. A Maori legend says that the water’s changing levels stem from the heartbeat of a giant who lies asleep in the lake’s depths.While a slumbering giant might be hard to prove, it's safe to say Elves have been here. The lake provided the setting for the Lothlórien scenes filmed for The Lord of the Rings movie. After a leisurely cruise on Lake Wakatipu, return to the starting point in Queenstown where your tour ends.