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Updated by Tiroy Benjamin on Apr 29, 2016
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Best Hikes in Queenstown – Amazing Adventures

Regarded as a nature lover's dream come true the dramatic landscapes of Queenstown are ideal for hiking and trekking as well. From mountain hikes to gully trails here are the top options for hikers.


Queenstown Hill

Setting out directly from the heart of the city's downtown area, the hike to the summit of Queenstown Hill is one of the shortest and most rewarding walking tours in the area. Taking from an hour to three hours to complete, this hike is ideal for beginners and leisurely hikers alike. Reaching the summit takes a little over an hour and visitors will be greeted with captivating views of Lake Wakatipu and the breathtaking surrounding landscapes.


Ben Lomond Summit Trail

For those who wish to engage in a more immersive and lengthy hiking experience, the Ben Lomond Summit Trail takes nearly seven hours to complete. Located on the outskirts of Queenstown the Ben Lomond mountain hiking trail is one of the most frequented trekking routes in Queenstown. Offering panoramic views of the Wakatipu Basin at large, Queenstown and Lake Wakatipu, this engaging hiking trail should not be attempted during winter weather conditions. Those who are short on time or do not wish to scale to the top of the summit can still enjoy fantastic views from the halfway point known as Ben Lomond Saddle, which takes about 3 hours to reach. Another shortcut is to travel via the Skyline Gondola which shaves 45 minutes off the total time required to reach the top.


Mt Alfred Summit

The starting point for this hike is located an hour away from Queenstown and another 20 minutes from Glenorchy. Visitors can rely on signposts set up along the route which indicate the" Routeburn Track" and the starting point is recognizable by the car park found in the locale where the hike begins in earnest. This hike also takes about 6 hours to complete as Mount Alfred is a 1375m high peak nestled amidst both the Rees River Valley and the Dart Valley. Once atop the mountain, trekkers can take in the panoramic views which include sightings of Mt Earnslaw and the Humbolts.


Sawpit Gully Trail

This hike begins from Arrowtown and is a looping route which takes about three hours to complete. The best way to experience this trail is to set out in a clockwise manner so that hikers have enough time to work their way to the steeper stretches ahead. Crossing several creeks including the Sawpit Gully also takes visitors across beech forests and pastoral tussock laden slopes. Hikers must watch out for the spear grass and matagouri bushes lining the way as the plants can be prickly.


The Routeburn Track

A day's walk at least the Routeburn Track also sets out from Glenorchy. Stretched out across 32km the trail is one of the most scenic tracks in Queenstown which takes visitors across spectacular areas such as the Fiordland National Park and Mount Aspiring. The entire track offers variety of diverse environments and landscapes while those who have time constraints can call it quits at the Routeburn Falls Hut and still enjoy a memorable hike. Travellers who are going the distance will come across challenging portions of the hike towards the end of the track although the stunning views of The Humbolts makes it entirely worth it. Visitors based in Queenstown ski resorts such as the Oaks Club Resort will have easy access to this track and others around Queenstown.


Lake Hayes Loop

A short hike for those who enjoy lakeside hikes, the Lake Hayes Loop takes less than two hours to complete. Hikers should be weary of mountain bikers on the trail as it is also frequented by cyclists.