What to See & Do in Dunedin
Dunedin lives with and values its heritage. We have fine examples of working heritage like Speight’s Brewery, the Gasworks Museum and the Taieri Gorge Railway.
We welcome visitors to the stately homes Larnach Castle and Olveston, and showcase standout Victorian and Edwardian buildings like First Church and Dunedin Railway Station.
Dunedin’s Scottish roots are celebrated. Piping and marching are strong in the city, while The Caledonian Society of Otago’s annual Highland Games will next be held in November, 2012.
Dunedin has a spectacular and varied coastline. There’s good surfing north and south and a host of safe swimming beaches.
St. Clair with its vibrant and cosmopolitan Esplanade is just ten minutes from the city; other gems include Tunnel Beach (private, moody and dramatic – the most romantic spot in Dunedin), Long Beach (a Mecca for rock climbers and cave dwellers, reached via Port Chalmers) and Brighton (a family-friendly South Coast beach, popular with swimmers and surfers and destination of the Dunedin to Brighton Veteran Car Rally).
Find fabulous ways to recharge your batteries on holiday with Dunedin’s extensive entertainment offerings.
Kids will love the Otago Museum with its exotic Tropical Rainforest and Butterfly House, and Mum and Dad can relax in the excellent Museum Café. Try your luck at Dunedin’s boutique casino or visit one of the picturesque golf clubs the city is host to.
With an event-rich calendar, Dunedin is constantly host to entertaining events and attractions, come and enjoy!
Gardens, public and private, adorn Dunedin and provide year-round interest. Two of them - Dunedin Botanic Garden and Larnach Castle Garden - are Gardens of International Significance. Another two - Glenfalloch Woodland Garden and Wylde Willow Garden - are Gardens of National Significance.
October means Spring Festival, a time when Dunedin residents open their hearts and gardens to celebrate the rhododendron. The recently expanded festival now includes food, wine and art in its programme, in addition to lectures, workshops and displays.
Everyone loves the lifestyle here.
Surveys remind that Dunedin is a safe and friendly city, and we all know of couples who have returned to raise their kids here. So what makes Dunedin so special?
The pace of life is slower here and stress levels are low. Museums and galleries offer active holiday programmes, and beaches, parks and playgrounds are never far from home.
Short of cash?
Relax at the gardens, visit the galleries and museums, catch some waves, drive or cycle the Otago Peninsula, or take some spring water at the Speight’s tap - it’s free and there are no chemicals added to it.
Locals are known to be frugal, so do what they do.
Love to surf? Are you a Mountain biker? A bird watcher? Appreciate fine gardens?
Lovers of the outdoors are spoilt for choice when visiting Dunedin; such easy access to the remarkable landscapes, renowned native wildlife and facilities that promote our flora and fauna, allows you and your family to explore and enjoy.
Enjoy the diverse attractions of Dunedin even more by taking a tour hosted by passionate and knowledgeable locals, who give you the inside story about our town and it’s surrounds.
You can overwhelm your senses deliciously on the Cadbury Factory tour, immerse yourself in the heritage of the city and hear memorable tales of times gone by on a City Walking tour, or get up close and personal to our internationally renowned wildlife on a tour on the Otago Peninsula.
Let us show you our place, at your pace…a tour ensures that you don’t miss out on any of Dunedin’s good bits!
There are numerous scenic walks around Dunedin. Short tracks criss-cross Otago Peninsula, the Town Belt and Ross Creek; and there’s the attraction – or otherwise – of tackling Baldwin Street, the world’s steepest street.
Further afield, there are tracks near the Taieri River and Silverstream, half-day hikes along Dunedin’s dramatic skyline (the Pineapple, Leith Saddle and Mt Cargill Tracks), walks to mysterious places like Tunnel Beach, and serious hikes in the Silverpeaks.
Many of Dunedin’s iconic buildings - think First Church, The Municipal Chambers, Dunedin Railway Station - are found in and near The Octagon. This area is flat and best viewed on foot. Follow the heritage trails or get real value by joining a guided walk.
Otago Peninsula is home to New Zealand Fur Seals, rare Hooker’s Sea Lions, Yellow-Eyed Penguins, and the only mainland Royal Albatross colony anywhere. It is also home to the New Zealand Marine Studies Centre and award-winning tour operators such as Monarch Wildlife Cruises and Tours, Elm Wildlife Tours, Penguin Place, and Nature Guides Otago.
Just 20km north of Dunedin visit the award winning Orokonui Ecosanctuary and its many species of native forest and wildlife.
Natures Wonders Naturally
Dunedin Visitor Guide