Winter is on our doorstep and so too hopefully is travel to New Zealand. For some truly grand mountains and breathtaking scenery, look at Wanaka and Queenstown for your next ski trip.
1. Boots are one of your most important items.
To ensure they make it to your destination with you, take them as carry on luggage. Skis can always be rented but comfortable fitting boots are a necessity if you want a great holiday.
2. Ski technology is an ever changing world.
If you only venture to the mountains for a short break each year it may be worthwhile to rent your skis. This way you can be on new technology every year. This also saves carting your skis through airports.
3. Budget ahead and save a few dollars for a day’s heli skiing.
Believe me the experience is well worth the expense.
4. Skiing is an active sport.
Thus a reasonable standard of fitness is required in order to fully enjoy your time on the slopes. Start some kind of fitness regime well before you arrive at your sk destination. What with heli skiing, cross country and the major ski areas, it’s going to be a busy time.
5. Book some lessons for the beginning of your holiday.
They may cover some items you already know but often it is those simple points which may be just what you need to make that day’s heli skiing unforgettable.
6. Your own skis
If you are bringing your own skis, it’s a good idea to ensure they are properly tuned and waxed for the conditions.
7. Gloves, hat, goggles, thermals etc
New Zealand’s weather is as predictable as the bulls in Pamplona so invest in good practical ski wear – gloves, hat, goggles, thermals etc.
8. Children tips
If bringing children, have realistic ideas of what they and you will be doing on your holiday. If they are under six, a full day is a big ask. Plan days where one parent has a slow day with them whist the other goes and skis. Even hook up with another family in the same situation so everyone has a ski partner.
9. Good local knowledge
If taking lessons, ask the instructor where is their favourite restaurant or apres ski location. Even for a lay day enquire as to where they may go on a day off so you are armed with plenty of good local knowledge.
10. Bookings are essential
Whether it’s the beginning of the season or the end, it is highly recommended to book restaurants, accommodation and even ski lessons so you’re not disappointed.
The South Island has the pick of the resorts. Cardrona is a favourite. Long easy slopes for the beginner through to some more challenging slopes. For those who like to push themselves Treble Cone is the place to ski. Queenstown also has some great slopes including Coronet Peak and The Remarkables.
If you are looking for a secluded luxury villa, we have chosen the South Islands top villas below which can be rented by a group or some individually.
Whare Kea Lodge
Nestled above Lake Wanaka and secluded from view, guests have exclusive access to this piece of paradise.
With timeless interior styling, the lodge is positioned to bask in the stunning vistas and the sun. A heli pad on the front lawn, fully equipped kitchen and a lodge manager onsite to offer you tailor made itineraries and a concierge service, Whare Kea has long been a place for the rich and famous to delight in the ski town of Wanaka.
Piwakawaka Point, Wanaka
Twenty minutes’ drive from Wanaka, Piwakawaka Point Villa is nestled into the landscape on the shores of Lake Wanaka on 330 acres. Of course there’s a tennis court, oversized spa pool, petanque court, private trails, stables, cellar and wine tasting gym and Frisbee golf. Oh and a helipad for heli-skiiers.
Matakauri Lodge, Queenstown
Spectacularly situated on Lake Wakatipu, Matakauri Lodge offers stunning views from every angle of the Remarkable, Cecil and Walter Peak mountain ranges. The Lodge offers accommodation in twelve luxurious guest suites, with eight outlying cottages and four suites located in the main lodge. The suites are nestled in a native forest overlooking Lake Wakatipu and the mountain panorama. In a league of its own in Queenstown, the Owner’s Cottage sleeps up to 8 in its four suites.
The Dacha, Wanaka
Large open fires, floor to ceiling glass with a wall of bi-fold doors which open to the outside deck with 180 degree views of Lake Wanaka and the mountains beyond. This is the perfect stay put location for a couple, family group or group of friends travelling together.
Situated 20 minutes from Wanaka Mahu Whenua has five individual Ridgeline Suites (three Homestead Suites and two Cottage Suites) and is also available on an exclusive-use basis for up to 12 guests. The property consists of four adjoining high country sheep stations – Motatapu, Mt Soho, Glencoe and Coronet Peak – which, combined, stretch from Glendhu Bay in Wanaka all the way through to Arrowtown in Queenstown and host some of the most iconic and dramatic natural alpine scenery in New Zealand.
For more personalised information tips and advice, or to book this incredible holiday contact your local TravelManagers’ personal travel manager here.