Photo Hotspots & Photography

Photography in Queenstown and Arrowtown

A growing area of tourism in the Southern Lakes is Photo Tourism.  It’s an amazing opportunity to combine adventuring in new localities and capturing the memories with photographic perfection.  And by default, given the nature of the tours, your locations are nearly always ‘off the beaten track’ and will serve to secure that ultimate defining photo of your most awesome adventure.

Queenstown and its lake surrounds are epic and expansive and provide a perfect backdrop for landscape photography.  And the people who come and visit tend to be a cross section of interesting nationalities whose faces tell a hundred stories on their own.  Combine the two and you have a photographers paradise.  Without a tour guide, you’ll need a car and a very good insight into not only the best photo hot spots, but also the best time of the days, or even which season are best to visit.  

All in all a Photography tour sets out to introduce you to these spectacular locations as seen through the lens of a camera – the clarity of our summer mornings, the crispness of our winter evenings, the colourful autumn and the refreshing spring.  Every location is hand picked for a reason – colour, atmosphere, light, composition, people, feelings etc etc.

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Top 20 Photo Spots in Arrowtown and Queenstown

We thought we’d make it easy on you – here are our top 20 photo spots

  1. The flight in and out – especially if you are on an air NZ flight with the Koru tipped wing in the photo!
  2. The waterfront at any time of the day
  3. Wilson’s Bay and Bob’s Cove – for the nature photo
  4. 1 mile car park – the scenery over the lake is epic
  5. Ben Lomond Summit or saddle – worth the hike for the views alone.  Sunrise is spectacular
  6. Queenstown Gardens – a must have photo – the Frankton trail side with the boat sheds
  7. Cecil and Walter Peaks from Queenstown Bay – Sunset is pretty spectacular
  8. Jacks point – interesting and worth a glass of wine at the club house after!
  9. Basket at the top of Queenstown Hill – an absolute!
  10. Skyline Gondola – quintessential queenstown photo – best captured on a moody day
  11. Lake Hayes – dozens of photo spots around the lake (8.2km easy loop)
  12. Moke Lake at sunset – from the top of the loop
  13. Shotover canyon – the colours of the water against the canyon walls is epic
  14. Old Glenorchy Wharf – rustic and lonely, peaceful
  15. Queenstown to Glenorchy Road – get your mate to get a photo of you walking down the road solo!
  16. Cecil Peak via Helicopter – a nice but expensive photo
  17. The Remarkables Sunrise over the back, or sunset over the front – best with snow and clouds
  18. The Red Glenorchy Shed – fun
  19. Arrowtown's Main Street – a touch of history – best early morning and in autumn
  20. The Remarkables Shadow Basin Look Out – Back down over Lake Wakatipu.  The most epic scenic photo!

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Photography Tour Companies in Queenstown

And in terms of tour companies – there were quite a few, so we listed the most easily found for you:

Remarkable Imagery Photography Tours

Tours, Workshops and tuition by locals.  Half and full day tours and safari’s – including first sunrise shots and Heli Photography

Queenstown Photography Tours

Location specific tours to places like Skippers Canyon, Glenorchy, Nevis Valley - half days and full days, small groups

Aiste Vasileviciute Photography

Half Day and Full day in and around Queenstown (Arrowtown / Glenorchy etc), overnight and multi day adventure tours as well as Astrophotography and night ski tours

Paradise Pictures

Glenorchy Focused with local and respected photographer Laurence Belcher - half day tours + tuition 

Queenstown Centre For Creative Photography

‘Action’ lessons in photography while out and about on tour – reaching a little further in to the Otago Region.  Tours tend to have a theme i.e: Otago, Catlins, Autumn Colours in QT, Mt Cook, Fiordland & Milford Sounds etc

Photo Safaris South Island

Run by QCCP, Intense instruction amongst local landscapes, or larger workshops - specialist local ‘off the beaten track’ photography, 3-5 day workshops, charters and one on one all available

Hero Workshops and Tours

Hero Tours are all about traveling and photographing with a fun group of fellow camera nerds.  There are a lot of options here with a very professional educational approach.

Authentic As 

Luxurious tailored packages. Local tours around Queenstown and Glenorchy (top and Back / Around the Basin) and Starry Nights, + bespoke tours

New Zealand Photography Workshops

Learn – Experience – Inspire - from one-day workshops to multi-day tours, specialising in landscape and wildlife photography.

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