Lake Wanaka township has a population of approximately 5000 and the downtown area has a variety of cafés, restaurants and shops.
Relaxing pastimes can include lake and river walks, fishing, boat cruises, golf, sailing and scenic flights and outdoor enthusiasts can enjoy mountain biking, hiking, kayaking, rock climbing, canyoning, mountaineering and jet boating.
Family fun can include Puzzling World, NZ Fighter Pilots Museum, Toy and Transport Museum, Crossfire and Cinema Paradiso. In summer, swimming and barbecuing by the lake is a popular pastime.
In winter there is a choice of ski resorts – Treble Cone, Cardrona, Snow Farm and Snow Park all less than an hour's drive from Wanaka.
We are only a 5-minute walk to the lakeside town centre with retail shops, cafés and restaurants. Our famous Cinema Paradiso and Puzzling World are only a 6 to 10-minute walk.
The Wanaka golf course is just 200 metres away and we are close to the Mt Aspiring National Park. Warbirds Over Wanaka is held at Wanaka Airport which is a short 10-minute drive. All ski fields are located outside of Wanaka within a 30-minute drive.
New Zealand Ski Packages
At New Zealand Ski Packages, we're all about making your winter holidays an unforgettable adventure. We offer all-inclusive package deals that are affordable. Chose from our learn to ski, family ski and ski & play Wanaka ski package deals. Because we are Wanaka locals, located in Wanaka, we are eager to share our knowledge with you and show you the highlights and secrets of NZ's most scenic mountain resorts. Our Wanaka ski packages include: Lift Passes, Rentals, Lessons, Childcare, Accommodation, Rental Cars and Ski Transport.
Be amazed and amused for an hour, or a day. For nearly fifty years Puzzling World has been messing with people's heads no matter what age, nationality or experience. We invite you to come and enjoy Wanaka's wonderful world of weirdness! Offering The Great Maze, Illusion Rooms, Roman Toilets, Leaning Tower, Puzzle Centre & Gift Shop/Café, Puzzling World has 'weirdness' covered and is a must-see option for all ages!
Warbirds & Wheels
This world-class visitor attraction showcases a collection of Warbirds aircraft, over 30 world-class and privately owned classic cars, Wanaka wearable arts and tales of a local legend Sir Tim Wallis. This attraction also contains a 1950s retro diner with a wide range of delicious snacks baked on site daily, diner-style meals and refreshments, and retail shop with loads of exciting car and aircraft memorabilia. Open Monday to Friday 8am to 4pm. Closed weekends. Located at the Wanaka Airport, 9km from the township.
National Transport & Toy Museum
This fascinating museum houses one of the largest private collections in the world! With over half a century of collecting and preserving pieces from the past, the museum houses over 600 vehicles including classic cars, motorcycles, fire appliances, military vehicles, buses, trucks, tractors, construction gear and boats. Twenty civilian and military aircraft from the 1930s to 1990s. The nostalgic collection of 60,000 toys has something to fascinate the child in everyone, such as clockwork and battery powered toys, dolls, teddy bears, pedal cars, remote control models, money boxes and thousands of scale models.
You won't find another attraction like Wanaka's Crossfire anywhere else in the world, offering you an opportunity to shoot for fun in safe weather-protected settings. Hit golf balls on our covered golf driving range, shoot clay pigeons with shotguns, shoot targets with rifles on unique ranges, try archery on purpose-built allies, accept the challenge of one of New Zealand's longest mini-golf courses.
This 3 screen, state-of-the-art, classic movie theatre located in Wanaka is a real find. Comfy sofas, luxurious leather seating, an old Morris Minor or two, a café and bar serving delicious meals before, during or after the movie. Homemade ice cream, world-famous fresh hot cookies and a warm welcome from friendly staff. Loads of guides list the cinema as a "must do" when in Wanaka. A truly a memorable movie experience!
Wānaka Lavender Farm
Just a few minutes drive from the motel, the Lavender Farm features 20 acres of beautiful lavender fields, farm animals and display gardens. The best time to visit is during the summer season – when the fields are covered in stunning purple flowers – but the farm is open all year round, and each season offers something different. Enjoy a walk through the grounds; meet pigs, miniature horses, alpaca and sheep; or unwind over a cup of herbal tea in the cafe and browse farm-made lavender products.
This world class mountain bike (MTB) park is an awesome spot for two-wheeled explorers of all ages and abilities. With over 1,000 hectares of trail, there's something for everyone – including a fantastic café! The park is located 15 minutes' drive from Wānaka Heights. Talk to us about our favourite routes, or transport and bike rental options – we'll get you out there in no time. And don't forget we have lockable bike storage, so you can leave the bike safe with us while you're exploring Wānaka.
This lake-to-plate salmon fishing and restaurant is the only interactive fishing experience in the Queenstown Lakes area. Located a few minutes' drive from Wānaka on the way to Albert Town, it's all about fish, feast and fun. Try your hand catching a Chinook salmon from the spring-fed fishing lakes and enjoy the spoils of your labour, or choose something from their extensive menu and woodfired pizza selection, while enjoying lawn games and mini-golf in the beautiful gardens. A family-friendly activity for everyone.
Things to do in Wānaka on a Budget
Located in the heart of the stunning Southern Alps, you'll never run short of free and low-cost activities to do in our little town! At Wānaka Heights, we're always full of suggestions for Wānaka activities - but just a few of our favourites include:
- Paddle Boarding on Lake Wānaka
This is one of the best ways to see Lake Wānaka all year-round. Lakeside agencies Paddle Wānaka and Lakeland Wānaka both offer a range of paddleboard rental packages for all abilities. Chat to us at the front desk if you'd like help booking in.
- Bike or walk the Outlet Track
Popular with bikers and walkers, this easy 3km Outlet Track follows the crystal clear waters of the Clutha River from the Lake Wānaka outlet to Albert Town. It takes about an hour to walk one way, or half an hour by bike, and is a great walk to take your dog on too! Be sure to make time to reward your efforts at Pembroke Patisserie in Albert Town, recently voted the best French bakery in New Zealand! Ask at the front desk about mountain bike rentals in Wānaka.
- Wānaka wineries
You're spoilt for choice when it comes to wine tasting in Wānaka and Central Otago. Many local wineries offer a free or low cost tasting. There are countless vineyards to choose from between Wānaka, Cromwell and Queenstown, but our local favourites – just a few minutes' drive from the motel – include Rippon, Maude Wines Tasting Rooms, Aitken's Folly and Paddon's Paddock.
- Play a round of Disc Golf
Disc or Frisbee Golf is a hot activity here in the Queenstown Lakes. It involves throwing discs from teepads into metal baskets as targets, and there are three specially designed disc golf courses in Wānaka and the surrounding areas. Located just a few minutes' walk from the motel, the Lismore Park course is an 18-hole with stunning views of the lake and mountains. It's free to play, and you can rent or buy discs from a number of retailers in town. Just ask us for more info.