Queenstown Winter Events 2016

Events This Winter - Queenstown 2016

If your Queenstown winter holiday plans only involve hitting the slopes and hitting the après ski, then you're missing out. Before you get too relaxed by the fire with that glass of mulled wine, make sure you check out the many Queenstown events and add some extra spice to your winter ski holiday.


Queenstown is celebrated as the adventure capital of New Zealand, so it’s no surprise that even during the chilly winter months things don't slow down. From June to September, there are loads of events to keep you busy between skiing and snowboarding days.

Queenstown’s biggest winter event is the American Express Winter Festival. The event is held towards the end of June each year and heralds the official start of Queenstown’s ski season. The 10-day schedule of entertainment covers all budgets and age groups and is all in the name of appeasing the snow gods. The schedule is jam-packed and includes everything from fireworks, pop-up ice rinks and mountain bike races on snow to international comedy debates. The 2016 event was held 24 June – 3 July, so if you missed Winter Festival this year, make sure you get along next year.


4 – 7 August 2016

Cliquot in the snow

For some winter indulgence, it doesn’t get much better than perfectly chilled Veuve Clicquot amidst some of Queenstown’s most stylish venues. Now in its sixth year, the Clicquot in the Snow event is bigger and better in 2016 with some impressive new events added to the schedule. There are daily events like breakfast at The Hilton, drinks at Heidi’s Hut on Coronet Peak, high tea at Skyline Gondola and après ski drinks at the Snow Bar at Coronet Peak. A highlight event will be An Evening with Veuve Clicquot and Kathryn Wilson on Friday 5th August. The runway show launches shoe designer Kathryn Wilson’s spring/summer 2016 collection. Held on the TSS Earnslaw on Lake Wakatipu, the event is sure to be the highlight of the winter calendar. The other highlight will be the Clicquot Long Lunch. Held on Friday 5th August and Saturday 6th August, this event is a four-course degustation lunch at Josh Emmett’s Rata Restaurant. What more do we need to say? The event finishes with the Clicquot Laneway Party on Saturday 6th August. New this year, the Clicquot Laneway Party is an open street party (for guests over 18) and will feature DJ Justin Sweeny kicking and a surprise act. For further information see www.clicquotinthesnow.co.nz


13 August 2016

For those who want to push themselves even harder this winter, why not add a 44-kilometre endurance event to your ski holiday? The Torpedo7 Peak to Peak is one of the iconic multisport events on the South Island calendar. Now in its 23rd year, the event attracts a field of serious competitors and absolute beginners. Competitors can race as individuals or in teams to complete the five-stage event to get from the peak of the Remarkables Ski Area to the peak of the Coronet Peak Ski Area. The course consists of a 2 km ski or snowboard, 17 km mountain bike, 7 km kayak, 9 km run and finally a 9 km road cycle. Not for the feint of heart. For more details see http://southerntraverse.com/events/peak-to-peak/


27 August – 4 September 2016

Locals love a party!

Hold onto your ski boots; the party hits Queenstown from 27th August to 4th September with the annual Gay Ski Week event. Running from 27th August – 4th September, Gay Ski Week offers a non-stop schedule of events kicking off with a bang with the Broken Shed Opening Party at The World Bar on Saturday 8th September. What follows is a non-stop schedule of on and off-mountain events. The 8-day event delivers plenty of time for skiing and snowboarding as well as plenty of time for partying each evening. For more info see http://www.gayskiweekqt.com/.


15 – 18 September 2016

For something completely different to multi-sports and partying, the Arrowtown Arts Festival delivers a touch of culture to the Queenstown winter season. Running from 15 - 18 September, the event is a chance for locals and visitors to sample local artists, as well as get behind the easel themselves. Now in its second year, the event will include a wide range of workshops at Arrowtown Primary School and around the town. The event is a chance for local artists to showcase their talents and culminates with a market on Sunday 18th September where art aficionados can purchase some original works. Or you may be inspired to create your own masterpiece. See www.arrowevents.co.nz


19 July – 6 September 2016

Ski racing

Consisting of 6 ski races held every Tuesday from 19 July – 6th September, the Winter Classic Race Series is somewhat of an institution in Queenstown. The event has been running since 1977 and is a way for locals to take part in some friendly rivalry on the slopes. Teams consist of 4 entrants who will ski, snowboard or telemark their way to glory. With $15,000 up for grabs, there’s always plenty of action on race days. For more info check out NZSki's home page

Now there is no excuse not to indulge in a few extra events this winter. OF course, there’s nothing wrong with finding a comfy spot by the fire and ordering another mulled wine.