Summer sundowners, cocktails and beer gardens
After a #dunnerstunner day shake the beach sand from your toes, lay your shopping aside and rejuvenate yourself with a refreshing drop or two at one of Dunedin’s many perfect spots to relax over a drink.
The last rays of sun shine over the hills on to St Clair Beach waves and surfers. Relax with a cocktail, bubbles or an Otago wine and nibbles to savour. It’s the kind of sundowner you pictured when you planned this perfect day.
A gin bar with so many choices they’re running out of room for glasses to serve them in. Somehow it feels like exotic explorers would pause there to rest before heading to a new frontier. Knowledgeable staff and live music.
311 George Street
This tiny bar is big on character to match its excellent selection of beers from all over the world. Grab a pint and head for the small and quirky outdoor courtyard tucked away at the back. A great place to escape the sun and wet your whistle.
8 Bank Street
For a non-alcoholic alternative, pause for a bit of zing from Gong Cha’s bubble teas, in sensational flavours as well as natural, healthy, freshly brewed teas. How about a grapefruit green tea with white pearls, aloe or coconut jelly.
293 George Street
A boutique bar offering comfort and grandeur plus handcrafted cocktails and local wines and beer with selected snacks. Open Tuesday-Saturday 5pm to late.
118 High Street
Looking to watch the sunset over the city? Head for the sophisticated vibe of comfort exuded by this popular spot. Dance, eat and enjoy cocktails themed to suit the summer.
141 Stuart Street
Combine a northern coastal jaunt with a stop in at Arc Brewery on State Highway 1 just near the turn off to Warrington. The relaxed vibe, fresh brews and outdoor seating make this the ideal summer destination with live music and food trucks adding to the festive feel. Open on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
1870 Waikouaiti-Waitati Rd, Blueskin Bay
This dance club and nightclub is a sister to Carousel. With a ‘Summer Sunsets’ night on Fridays and an outdoor area to savour the last light of the day, there’s a real emphasis on relaxing and making the most of each Dunedin moment.
1 Great King Street
Clarified Aviation, Toast Negroni… yes, there is an avidly creative cocktail-making crew at this vibrant bar. New ingredients are always appearing, and Toast is keen to share the taste sensations. So keen they even offer cocktail-making classes – now that’s a spicy twist to add to your Dunedin experience. The chilled skill and attention to cocktail detail draws in plenty of discerning regulars, and that always says a lot.
59 Princes Street
If you prefer a spicy end to your day, add a little Mexican to the mix and head to the Alley Cantina, where tequila cocktails liven up the chimichungas.
140 George Street
With an exciting range of delicious cocktails, Vault 21 moves from being a bustling city restaurant by day to becoming a leading nightlife venue featuring top DJs in the jumping heart of Dunedin.
21 The Octagon
Get your Latin American dancing shoes on, relax with a cocktail or two and step out into Ombrellos’s courtyard on Salsa Thursdays. Or, simply watch and enjoy. Live music on Fridays and fresh Mediterranean moods every other day of the week (except Monday night) ensure this Dunedin stalwart guarantees a cosy, memorable end to a special summer’s day.
10 Clarendon Street
Secret spaces can be the most fun and this suave spot is found down an alleyway opposite the Rialto Cinema in Upper Moray Place. It’s made for lounging around, enjoying the slightly New York-rustic atmosphere and there’s often smooth music to sip along to.
50 Princes Street, but actually ‘round the corner
The dance floor is all lit up and waiting for you, as are the fun cocktails, including the wicked ‘Witches Brew’. A cheerful and inviting LGBTQ and straight friendly space for all to enjoy.
142 Princes Street
What could be better than enjoying your beers fresh from the brewery tap? Head down to New New New brewery and garden bar this summer to taste their latest flavour sensations and hang out in their groovy beer garden. Wednesday through Sunday, 3pm – 8pm.
218 Crawford St
This popular eatery and bar close to the University of Otago campus has a great selection of craft beers on tap and a cosy private deck and garden area to enjoy a drink in.
116 Albany Street