Sunrise in Queenstown: 7 Spectacular Spots to Enjoy the Sunrise in Queenstown

Popularly referred to as New Zealand’s adventure capital, Queenstown is also packed with awe-inspiring and naturally beautiful landscapes. Because of the region’s photogenic quality, the sunrise in Queenstown is considered as a prized event by tourists, especially photo enthusiasts. Here is a list of the best spots in Queenstown which will allow you to savor the experience of the sun rising and also to capture it in the camera.

7 Best Spots to Enjoy the Sunrise in Queenstown

1.Queenstown Beach


Located on the shores of the amazing Lake Wakatipu, Queenstown Beach presents a beautiful view of the sunrise in the winter season. As the sun rises from behind the Remarkables mountain ranges, the sky gets lit up and gradually becomes baby blue. Be sure to photograph the wonderful sight.

The Queenstown Beach is more popular as a summer holiday destination when the sun stays up for a longer period of time. During summer, bask in the sunshine, swim in the serene water or enjoy any of the water sports until the sun starts setting late in the evening. The stunning view of the Queenstown sunset from the beach is not to be missed.

2. Bob’s Peak


A gorgeous hike that does not demand much effort, Bob’s peak is one of the most photogenic spots in New Zealand. To reach at the top of the peak and enjoy sunrise, take the Tiki trail. At the beginning of the trail, there is the Queenstown Skyline Gondola which provides an awesome view for the sunset as well. 

An hour to ninety minutes is needed to complete the steep but short Tiki trail. The path is through a dense forest amid pine trees, view points and mountain bike tracks. Once you arrive at the top, a postcard-worthy spectacle reveals even if you miss the sunrise. But the sunrise at Bob’s peak definitely adds to the scenery, so please don’t miss it.

3. Benett’s Bluff


With breathtakingly colourful scenery, Benett’s Bluff on the drive from Queenstown to Glenorchy is a fine spot to enjoy the sunrise in Queenstown. Located by the shore of Lake Wakitapu, Benett’s Bluff has amazing views of the Pig and Pigeon Island, Mt. Alfred, Glenorchy and Mt. Earnslaw. There is a set-in to park your car if you pull over at the beautiful lookout.

The ground of the viewpoint is elevated than the surrounding area and hence the three sixty degree view to enjoy the scene of the sun rising from behind the mountain ranges. Just like the sunrise, the sunset at Benett’s Bluff is also spectacular.

4. Queenstown Hill


Also known by the Maori name Te Tapu-nui, Queenstown Hill is a climb of five hundred meters through pine forest. On the path, you will pass the renowned ‘Basket of Dreams’ sculpture before reaching at the top. An astounding view of the sunset and sunrise in Queenstown wait for those who complete the walk.

5. Coronet Peak


A twenty-minute drive from Queenstown takes you to Coronet Peak. With just the right amount of challenge for beginners, Coronet Peak ski terrain is steep in parts. The treeless terrain has spectacular views of Lake Wakitapu, Lake Hayes and The Remarkables.

One of the most popular ski resorts in New Zealand, Coronet Peak ski resort presents an opportunity to watch the epic sunrise in Queenstown. The Home of Night Ski in the country, Coronet Peak is a great choice to view the sunset as well.

6. Lake Hayes 


A serene and lovely lake located just fifteen minutes away by a car or bus from Downtown Queenstown, Lake Hayes is one of the best photo spots in Queenstown. The mirror-like waters of the lake often has some amazing reflections of the scenery. Sunrise at Lake Hayes is a feast to the eyes since the reflections of the sun rising is seen in the lake.

7. The Lake Esplanade


With alluring lake and mountain views, The Lake Esplanade are villa-style apartments set in Queenstown. A journey of seven minutes by foot from the central Queenstown takes you to this location on the shores of Lake Wakitapu. The sunrise at Lake Esplanade is just brilliant to watch in the scenery of The Remarkables mountain ranges along with the stunning reflections created on Wakitapu.

Although the locations to catch a glimpse of the spectacular sunrise in Queenstown are fine enough, there is another excellent option left to revel the sight of the sun rising in the region.

Hot Air Balloon Ride

Queenstown's Sunrise Air Balloons allows you to relish the fantastic terrain in Queenstown and Arrowtown in an exceptional style. Three sixty degree views of Queenstown and the surrounding beautiful area can be witnessed as you float effortlessly in an air balloon six thousand feet above the land. You will be taken to the departure point from your place of stay at very early in the morning before sunrise.

 The picturesque sight of the sun rising gets enhanced by the calm atmosphere and the finely textured landscape below includes Southern Alps, Lake Wakatipu, The Remarkables and the locations used for the filming of Lords of the Rings trilogy. A sumptuous champagne breakfast waits the passengers at the landing site when the hour-long journey comes to an end. The service is mostly available throughout the year depending on the weather conditions.
If you are a photo enthusiast, the trip will be even more pleasurable since there will be ample opportunities to click stunning photographs. It is advised to dress warmly because of the extreme cold weather in the morning.

A family-owned and operated company, Sunrise Balloons has been in the business for over twenty two years.
Location: Sunrise Balloons, Central Queenstown, New Zealand
Charges: Adult - NZ$595, Child (4-12 years) - NZ$395
Are there more options to enjoy the amazing sunrise in Queenstown? Let us know in the comments.

This post was published by Vishnu Kesavan

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