10 BEST Things to Do in New Zealand in Winter 2024!


Winter in New Zealand is the perfect season to explore the country, thanks to its coastline. These periods are generally mild; however, the alpine area does get snow. If you’re an outdoor and adventure enthusiast, it’s about time you go hiking mountains or visiting wildlife landscapes.

When is winter in New Zealand? Which are the best places to visit when the landscape is covered in snow? In this post, we’ll be going through the ten best things to do during this time of the year.

When Does Winter Start and What Offers the Best Experiences?

The winter months here fall between June and August. This is the coldest time of the year in the country. However, it is no less interesting for adventure lovers.

Here are some interesting things to try to have a positive experience:

  • Skydiving in Queenstown

  • Swimming in the Geothermal Pools

  • Skiing in Mount Ruapehu

  • Experience the South Islands

  • Visiting the Sky Tower

  • Outing at the International Antarctic Center

  • Overnight hiking in Mount Cook

  • Whale watching

  • Wildlife in Zealandia

  • Exploring the Canterbury Museum

Skydiving in Queenstown

Queenstown, New Zealand, is the place to go to feel the adrenaline rush of several types of free falls. This town is the perfect place to slake your appetite for excitement, with options including jet-boating, bungee jumping, and skydiving.

Important! If you currently possess a NZPIA B licence, you have the option to skydive independently. Furthermore, if you decide to pursue skydiving as a skill after your tandem jump, there are several courses accessible to you for learning.

Swimming in the Geothermal Pools

The North Island town of Rotorua is well-known for its geothermal features and rich Maori heritage. After a day of skiing in winter in New Zealand, go to this city for a warm soak. Bask in the beaches and mud pools, with some of the many spa treatments available there.

Rotorua’s official social media site writes: “Rotorua presents numerous opportunities for individuals to swim or unwind in the breathtaking thermal waters. In addition, the city boasts a public swimming pool heated by thermal energy, as well as a selection of opulent thermal spas for a truly luxurious experience.”

Skiing in Mount Ruapehu

The country is gifted with some of the best mountains and scenic locations. Mount Ruapehu is a great place to go snowboarding or skiing, two of the most well-known winter pastimes. The North Island is home to country’s biggest winter playground. There are two ski resorts and a dedicated learning area, thanks to the island’s volcanic terrain.

Experience the South Islands

Spend some quality time with nature and wildlife in the South Island. The snow-covered alps, glacial valleys, dazzling lakes, craggy coastline, and thriving flora are perfect for sightseeing activities. Just chill and enjoy nature.

Visiting the Sky Tower

The Sky Tower is another excellent place to visit during the winter months. Standing 328 meters tall, this magnificent edifice is the highest structure in the Southern Hemisphere. Indulge in sumptuous cuisine with the best wine at one of the many luxurious restaurants. All the while, you’ll enjoy the breathtaking views of the city from the building’s upper floors.

Outing at the International Antarctic Center

On your winter vacation, don’t miss a visit to the International Antarctic Centre. The Antarctic Storm, Hagglund Ride, 4D cruise, and Penguin Encounter are just a few of the thrilling experiences here. That’s what makes it one of New Zealand’s award-winning national parks. Spend some quality time with your loved ones and don’t forget to bring in photography to capture the moments.

Jennifer, Founder of Backyard Travel Family tells us: “The Antarctic Experience at the International Antarctic Centre is a highly recommended attraction in Christchurch, New Zealand. It provides a unique opportunity to encounter an authentic snowstorm, witness penguins gracefully swimming in search of their fishy meals, and even embark on an exhilarating ride in a genuine Hagglund vehicle.”

Overnight hiking in Mount Cook

Have you decided to visit New Zealand with the hopes of ascending the country’s highest peak, Mount Cook? You’ll get stunning views of the valley, river system, waterfalls, seductive pools, and the enchanting sunset. All these await you as you hike along the glacier pathways of the Alps in the South Island.

Whale Watching

Whakatane, the Hauraki Gulf, and the Bay of Islands are top locations for whale watching. Whales are present at several attractions but Kaikoura is the only place where you can see the enormous sperm whales. Ensure you’re present at the height of winter, when migration is at its highest. You’ll get to see other marine species making their way to the continental shelf in the vicinity of Kaikoura.

Wildlife in Zealandia

Zealandia is the first and only completely enclosed ecosanctuary dedicated to protecting a freshwater habitat. Get your tickets ahead of time and avoid the lines to see many uncommon species. Seeing these endangered creatures in their natural habitat of chilly New Zealand is a treat.

Aaron Spray, Contributor, calls New Zealand a wildlife sanctuary: “It is a fulfilling destination to explore, home to some of New Zealand’s most unique wildlife and a vital part of the nation’s conservation efforts.” 

Exploring the Canterbury Museum

Canterbury Museum is a great place to learn about history and culture throughout the colder months. This museum dates back to 1867 and has displays on the Canterbury earthquake and other natural and human history collections. Don’t miss out on this fantastic museum, history nerds!

In addition to the usual tourist attractions, New Zealand offers unique experiences for adrenaline junkies. Junk tourism is becoming increasingly popular and attractive in this country. Travellers not only have the opportunity to immerse themselves in cultural and natural heritage but also to try their luck at exciting gambling.

A visit to the local casinos adds extra spice to the trip. New Zealand has many places where you can try your luck, spin the reels of slot machines, or play blackjack or roulette. In this case, the trip becomes even more exciting because you not only get cultural and aesthetic pleasure but also win good money. And who knows? Maybe luck will be on your side and you will win big.

However, if you don’t want to visit a physical casino, you can always enjoy the excitement online at any convenient location, and explore high-paying online gaming options for Kiwis. The convenience of playing from anywhere with an internet connection, combined with the variety of games and the potential for big wins, makes online casinos a popular choice for many players in New Zealand. 

And with the added benefit of quick and easy access to bonuses and fast withdrawals, the online casino experience is more accessible and rewarding than ever before.


New Zealand has evolved to become one of the best places to be during the winter. From surfing to kayaking to skiing and diving, the list of things to do in this rich city goes on and on. Are you still wondering, ‘when is winter in New Zealand?’ Don’t wait any longer. Book your tickets earlier, skip the rush, and enjoy the adventure!


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