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Top 10 Summer Events in Queenstown

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If your New Year’s resolution is to make the most of your weekends and spend time with friends, you’ll need to read up on all of the best locations, events, and activities to make those memories possible in 2024. Sometimes the most obvious choice is also the best choice!

Spending the Summer months in Queenstown and the Central Otago area treats you to mountainous alpine views with all of the season’s social events and none of the snowy chill that keeps many hunkered down. For this reason, it’s no coincidence that the community of Queenstown is always bustling with things to do.

Fill your calendar with these must-do summer events in Queenstown ranging from action-sports, food and wine showcases, music festivals and a good game of rugby!

1. New Years Eve fireworks at the Queenstown Lakefront

31st December 2023 
Gather together with locals, traveling Kiwis, and international guests to welcome 2024 with a fantastic fireworks show on the Queenstown lakefront. With celebrations from 7.30pm until late, you can bring the family and turn in early or have an adults night out under the peaks!

2. Bay Dreams South

5th January 2024

Bay Dreams is bringing the heat further south in 2024 with Bay Dreams South in Queenstown! The combined local and international artist lineup is promising to keep you magnetized to the mosh; get set for headliner Quavo, Yelawolf, Luude, Delta Heavy, and more. There’s nothing better than starting the year with some beats in the summer sun with friends, and Bay Dreams South is the perfect occasion.

3. New Zealand Jet Sprint Championship

20th January 2024

During a relaxing Kiwi summer, sometimes a change of pace is needed to kick the holiday excitement into turbo gear. Head along and witness the only jetsprint round in the South Island only 10 minutes outside of Wānaka; the New Zealand Jet Sprint Championship. Queenstown and Wānaka may be the adventure capital of New Zealand, but at this event you can sit on the sidelines and spectate a showcase of incredible speed machines and competitive racing.
Photo / Lewis Gardner

4. Queenstown Bike Festival

19th – 28th January 2024

Queenstown Bike Festival is one huge celebration for lovers of two wheels that spans seven days. There’s an action-packed schedule for the festival in 2024 celebrating almost every facet of the sport for both riders and spectators; slopestyle, slalom, pump track, pure downhill and XL jumps and drops. The week also caters to those who enjoy a more casual pace, with a group social ride and wind-down events at local spots like Canyon Brewery and Altitude Brewing!

5. The Highlanders vs. Moana Pasifika rugby game

2nd February 2024

Whether you’re a local supporter or wanting to experience the true Kiwi rugby mania for the first time, The Highlanders vs. Moana Pasifika clash at the Queenstown Events Centre will be a must-see. With plenty of off-season player movement in the Highlanders team and Moana Pasifika looking for a win to start their series of early 2024 matches, this game will make for great Friday night footy.

6. Gibbston Valley Summer Concert

3rd February 2024

The Summer Concert Tour 2024 is touring Taupō and Hamilton before ending in style at the Gibbston Valley Winery for a night of good tunes, good drinks, and great views of the stunning rolling hills. The lineup includes Simple Minds, Texas, Collective Soul, and Pseudo Echo, so ensure you have your grooving shoes on.

7. Goldminer MTB Event at Coronet Peak

17th February 2024

If you love to push your own limits in the saddle, consider testing your fitness and endurance in the 40 kilometre Goldminer event on the trails of Coronet Peak. With a total climb of approximately 2700m and some world-class downhill sections, this Queensotwn bike race is geared toward those that love all parts of the journey. If you’re still discovering your limits to begin with, the event is also bringing back the shorter Miniminer event that is a great 20 kilometre option to find your point of failure.

8. NZ Golf open

29 Feb – 3rd March 2024

The NZ Golf Open is an iconic event in the New Zealand sporting calendar held at the l. Spend a day or two watching over 150 world-class amateur and professional golfers hit their stride while enjoying the grounds of Millbrook Queenstown which has been voted the Leading Golf Resort in Australasia for three years running.

9. Motatapu off-road sporting event

2nd March 2024

Explore the backcountry trails of Queenstown in this one-day sporting event that has something for everyone! The Motatapu offers six different running, mountain biking or walking events to choose from, including a kids 4km trail run to get the whole family involved. From endurance to a fun experience, people of all fitness journeys can take the path less traveled and see our gorgeous landscapes while being active.

10. Ripe Wānaka Food and Wine Festival

23rd March 2024

Head over the hill to Wānaka for a massive showcase of Central Otago’s finest local wines, food, art, and music all in one place. The Ripe Wānaka Food and Wine Festival will allow you to discover new favourites, new cuisines, and new local vendors in your area. To make a full weekend out of the festival and enjoy Wānaka to the fullest, opt to camp at the Glendhu Campground directly across from the venue or bring your bikes to ride the nearby Glendhu Bike Park.

With these unmissable Queenstown events in 2024, your New Year’s resolution will be ticked off before the summer is over and your bank of memories will be far richer to start the year off right!

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