10 Skiing Destinations in New Zealand

10 Skiing Destinations in New Zealand
10 Skiing Destinations in New Zealand

When people think about ski resorts, they may consider the mountains in Switzerland or the hills in Italy to be some of the best places in the world to enjoy the sport. If they take some time to learn about New Zealand, they may realize that this is another location they can enjoy. New Zealand is a land that has a little bit of everything. From the sandy beaches to big cities to ski resorts, New Zealand is ready to treat people to a great time in any way they please.

When to Go

When to Go
When to Go

Skiing requires one very important ingredient: snow. The season for skiing in New Zealand runs from June to October, which is great if you enjoy skiing year-round. You can spend the months you call summer in New Zealand and enjoy your traditional winter months of skiing elsewhere.

Note: New Zealand’s ski season typically runs from June to September, with the peak season being July and August. The exact dates might change, given the snow conditions each year.

Where to Go

There are top 10 places that ski enthusiasts like to visit.

1. Cardrona

Cardrona
Cardrona

It is one of the best in New Zealand. You will find a wide variety of terrain, great views, and robust infrastructure—all conveniently located roughly halfway between Queenstown and Wanaka.

It is also quite accessible, less than an hour from Queenstown and Wanaka, with shuttles available if you don’t feel like tackling the road yourself. Of course, that ease of access can sometimes contribute to weekend crowds.

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2. Remarkables

Remarkables
Remarkables

Although The Remarkables is a small ski area, the views are amazingly large, including some of the most famous vistas on the earth. With three magic carpets within view of the base lodge, the Remarkables is an excellent choice for families with beginners.

The runs are nice and wide, making it perfect for kids to practice their turns, and the trails here are ideal for long runs. However, the natural snow conditions aren’t always great here, and you can often end up with wet stuff or ice. But in saying that, there’s a fair amount of snowmaking to compensate for it.

This gorgeous mountain range is also home to some of New Zealand’s best slopes. Wide runs provide plenty of scope for beginners to practise, while there are plenty of black runs for advanced adventurers wanting to challenge themselves on the park’s tougher terrains.

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3. Coronet Peak

Coronet Peak
Coronet Peak

This Peak is just 20 minutes from the adventure haven of Queenstown. It is also one of the most visited places for skiers to get their turns.

With only 27 runs, it usually gets crowded, especially compared to some of the club ski fields. The base area might seem sparse, but Coronet Peak offers many delightful dining options, including childcare, ski school, rentals, and shopping!

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4. Mount Hutt

Mount Hutt
Mount Hutt

Reliable, good snow conditions and coverage last well into the Southern Hemisphere spring. You will find a good terrain selection, plenty of space for beginners, loads of wide groomers for intermediates, and a decent collection of off-piste blacks for the more adventurous.

Kids below 10 can ski for free, so families can get great value for money. Most visitors stay in Methven, about 30 minutes away, where accommodations are reasonably priced. And if your family has expert skiers with differing abilities, the range of terrain here makes Mt Hutt a no-brainer.

Mt Hutt is located in the Canterbury region, approximately 90 minutes from Christchurch. The World Ski Awards has crowned it New Zealand’s Best Ski Resort five years in a row, and the area is renowned for offering superb snow conditions. The spectacular field features two learner lifts, four freestyle mountain parks and special ski passes geared towards different skills and abilities.

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5. Craigieburn Velly

Craigieburn Velly
Craigieburn Velly

Although it’s a club ski field, Craigieburn Valley has the country’s highest black run proportion. There’s hardly any beginner terrain here and no grooming. Some skiers might even have a hard time here.

It’s all open bowls, narrow chutes, and long runs of untouched snow. With just two beginner runs, no rental facilities, a basic lodge, limited accommodations, and only three rope tows, it’s easy to understand that Craigieburn doesn’t draw huge crowds. And, of course, you can access all the backcountry by hiking.

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6. Broken River

Broken River
Broken River

It offers a broader terrain selection than some of the other club ski fields. That, plus kids under 11 ski for free, makes it a great choice for families—as long as everyone can get comfortable with the rope tow lifts.

Since the club doesn’t draw that many visitors, powder stashes last for days in the sheltered bowls. The day lodge will have basic food service and inexpensive lessons, but that’s about it as far as amenities. It’s a space for adventurous souls who are all about the amazing terrain, quality snow, and friendly, laid-back vibe.

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7. Treble Cone

Treble Cone
Treble Cone

You will find jaw-dropping views of Lake Wanaka and Mt. Aspiring, and Treble Cone is convenient to get to from both Wanaka and Queenstown. 45% of the trails are rated for intermediates and another 45% for advanced skiers. There are plenty of choices for everyone. The beginner terrain is limited, but it’s not too bad for true newbies, considering Treble Cone provides free access to the Magic Carpet and discounted passes to the Platter Lift. The base area may be relatively basic, but the chic, relaxed town of Wanaka is conveniently close by, with a good selection of lodging, restaurants, shopping, and services.

With a cool 550 hectares (just under 1,400 acres) to ski around in, Treble Cone is one of Wanaka’s most popular picks for powder enthusiasts of all kinds, namely because the fresh lines are a true force to be reckoned with. It offers beginner ski and snowboard lessons on-site, and there are many gullies and off-piste terrains for the more advanced skiers.

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8. Mount Olympus

Mount Olympus
Mount Olympus

When you see Mount Olympus’s peaks and terrain, you’ll know why they call it the “playground of the gods”. Not only will you find a relaxed and enjoyable experience here – but if you’re willing to hike from the lift, you’ll get access to the incredible backcountry! And although the access road isn’t the easiest to navigate and not everyone enjoys rope tows – especially beginners and snowboarders – this is what keeps the crowds down.

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9. Whakapapa

 Whakapapa
 Whakapapa

It was the location for Mordor in The Lord of the Rings saga. With almost 70 runs, Whakapapa is excellent for everyone, from novices to experts. It has New Zealand’s largest dedicated beginner place, safely away from more advanced runs and faster skiers, making the resort great for families.

Accommodations are more convenient than those at Turoa, with a handful of lodges at the base and a broader selection at the National Park. However, its accessibility means it is likely to get crowded.

This ski site is located on the north-eastern slopes of Mt Ruapehu in Tongariro National Park. Its boundary area of 550 hectares (1,400 acres) and a vertical descent of 675 metres (2,214 feet) invite skiers of all kinds to get into the snowy spirit. Happy Valley is their beginner terrain, secluded from the more advanced areas. There are 30 groomed jumps and trails for intermediate riders and 24 jam-packed black and diamond runs for seasoned pros.

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10. Turoa

Turoa
Turoa

It is one of only two ski resorts on New Zealand’s North Island. This allows you to ski on the country’s largest active volcano, Mt Ruapehu! Turoa’s elevation and location allow for plentiful snow and more challenging terrain than neighbouring Whakapapa.

The terrain provides something for everyone, so you might see a flock of crowds coming from Wellington and Auckland on weekends. You can dine throughout the mountain, serving incredible Middle Earth views and food! Luckily, the town of Ohakune has many more options just 30 minutes from the lifts.

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Synopsis

These are some of the most popular and adventurous skiing destinations. Visit and enjoy your favourite games. The timing and facilities might vary according to the season and other conditions, so you must check before planning a trip.

FAQs

Is Cardrona good for beginners?

Cardrona has a good variety of beginner slopes and a dedicated learning area.

Is Treble Cone for experts only?

Mostly. Treble Cone has challenging terrain and limited beginner options.

Are there any family-friendly activities at The Remarkables?

The Remarkables has several family activities, including scenic gondola rides and snow tubing.

What kind of skiing does The Snow Farm specialize in?

The Snow Farm is a great destination for cross-country skiing and snowboarding.

Mamta Sharma

Mamta is a spirited writer hailing from Wellington, bringing a youthful zest to the world of digital content. Merging her love for narrative with an eye for detail, Ella crafts stories that resonate and engage the modern reader.