A picturesque town, populated by kind souls, nestled in the vastness of the Southern Alps – Wanaka is like no other. Whare Kea is located on the shores of Lake Wanaka, the fourth largest lake in New Zealand and the nucleus of a multitude of trails, the township and mountain ranges. It is an adventurer’s paradise, and a nature lover’s idyll.
IN THE MOUNTAINS
Whare Kea Lodge is situated within unrivaled alpine surrounds. Getting into the mountains is a perfect way to immerse yourself in the landscape.
Whether it’s exploring Mt. Aspiring National park, enjoying one of the many incredible day hikes; overnight hikes from the Whare Kea Chalet, rock climbing; ice climbing or summiting a challenging peak with a local guide – there is something for everyone.
Hunting season, between April and July, also provides an alternative way to explore the Southern Alps.
ON THE WATER
The crystal-clear water of Lake Wanaka and the adjoining rivers provide reason alone to visit. With the lakes, rivers, beaches, islands and waterfalls just calling to be explored.
Lake cruises, jetboating, island excursions, rafting, paddle boarding and kayaking are just some of the ways to enjoy the water. Or for those a little more daring, our region is NZ’s premier canyoning destination and we even have man-made wave on the river for those in pursuit of some surfing.
These pristine waters are also a fisherman’s paradise with the lakes and rivers around Wanaka brimming with New Zealand trout and salmon.
IN THE SKY
Experience the overwhelming beauty of the region’s latticed rivers, lakes, glaciers and mountains from a vantage point like no other.
Scenic flights in vintage tiger moths; helicopter flights straight from the Whare Kea Lodge helipad to the Whare Kea Chalet (link to page) and fixed wing flights into the remote Siberia Valley are just some examples. With Mt. Aspiring National Park and Milford Sound flights also guest favorites. If you seek more of a thrill, world class skydiving and bungee jumping are also on offer.
The only limit to the adventures around Whare Kea is your imagination.
ON THE SNOW
During the winter months Wanaka is a skier’s dream. With easy access to three world class ski fields – Treble Cone, Cardrona and the Snow Farm – with long uncrowded slopes, wide open trails through to expert shoots, terrain parks to cross country skiing – there is something for all abilities.
Heliskiing opens up more possibilities, with runs varying between 2000 to 4000 vertical feet. Skiing in sheltered basins, bowls and wide rolling mountain flanks through to steep and challenging chutes. Best of all, your Heli ski trip will begin from your garden, Whare Kea Lodges front lawn.
ON THE Land
There are endless ways to explore the land around Whare Kea Lodge.
Horse Trekking through historic gold mining valleys or through the vines of Rippon Vineyard to the lake front are two examples. Or perhaps explore private High-Country Stations on a 4wd safari and see farm life, hike for a day, go mountain biking, or simply marvel at the views.
If golf is your passion, Wanaka boasts a picturesque 18-hole golf course overlooking both the lake and the mountains, while Queenstown offers another four courses with outstanding views.
Eat and Drink
Spoiled for choice, Wanaka boasts far more options for wining and dining than is usually expected from a town this size. A private chef in the comfort of Whare Kea Lodge or a dine out option ranging from a fine dining experience to a more relaxed bistro atmosphere, there is something for any occasion and all tastes.
Our neighbouring vineyards are world renowned for their wine production – most famously Pinot Noir. Our region also boasts a number of award-winning craft breweries, and an artisan spirit distillery.