New Zealand Ski Resorts

If you are thinking about skiing in New Zealand and want a quick run down about all of the best New Zealand ski resorts keep reading. The New Zealand ski season starts in June, with Cardrona Alpine Resort opening its gates first and runs through to mid October, where fantastic spring skiing if offered, the last New Zealand ski resorts to close are The Remarkables and Cardrona Alpine Resort. We will kick off with everyone’s favourite destination, Queenstown and talk about Queenstown ski resorts followed by Wanaka and Mt Hutt.

Coronet Peak

Coronet Peak is nice and close to downtown Queenstown, making it the most accessible of the New Zealand ski resorts. You would choose Coronet Peak if you want to learn to ski, are coming to New Zealand for a family ski holiday experience or purely want to check out it’s epic roller coaster terrain! Coronet Peak is also the only ski field in New Zealand to offer Night Skiing a massive draw card for skiers and shredders. Night Skiing is offered from 4 – 9pm every Wednesday, Friday & Saturday from mid June to the end of  August. See what everybody’s raving about and grab yourself a pizza and Coronet Peak Pale Ale while you’re at it. Live DJ spinning on deck, fires going, friends all around – what else could you ask for? Snow? Yeah they have got that too!

Where to stay Queenstown or Arrowtown

Where is Coronet Peak? easy 20 minute drive from the town of Queenstown

Closest Airport Queenstown

Why ski or snowboard at Coronet Peak? Closest ski field to Queenstown, great ski resort for families and beginners, Night Skiing and epic progressive intermediate terrain!

Night skiing Queenstown snow

The Remarkables

The famous Remarkables mountain range is about fun, families and freestyle, all an easy 40 minute drive from downtown Queenstown. What’s not to love about three sun-drenched, north-facing snow-filled bowls perfectly formed to cater for everyone from absolute beginners to powderhounds. Bigger, better and even more remarkable, the ski field boasts an impressive new architecturally-designed base building, new high-speed six-seater chairlift to Curvey Basin, as well as additional snowmakers and more car parks. Novice no more when you and your family ease into skiing or riding, starting at a dual-sided beginners slope with covered conveyor with world-class instructors sharing the love. Intermediate to advanced skiers and serious high-flying freestylers and boarders can lap Sugar Bowl and its terrain parks from the high speed Curvey Basin six-seater chair.  A visit to Queenstown isn’t complete without skiing The Remarkables and sister mountain Coronet Peak. For the best value for money, we recommend buying a ski package inclusive of a multi-day pass which provides access to both mountains to get the full experience and have an epic winter holiday.

Where to stay Queenstown

Where is The Remarkables? 40 minute drive from the town of Queenstown

Closest Airport Queenstown

Why ski or snowboard at The Remarkables? Excellent New Zealand ski resort to learn to ski and for families, close to Queesntown. Fun terrain park, great hike-to powder pockets, north facing so basks in the sun!

Cardrona

Cardrona Alpine Resort is New Zealand’s most popular ski area, attracting all kinds of snow enthusiasts – from beginners & families, to Olympic & X Games athletes. Take a short drive from Queenstown or Wanaka and be welcomed with genuine Kiwi hospitality to NZ’s ultimate winter playground. Cardrona offers the longest ski season out of New Zealand ski resorts opening in early June and closing mid October! Cardrona offers 25% beginner, 25% intermediate, 30% advanced and 20% expert terrain, this epic mix means Cardrona will most definitely keep everyone entertained from families, beginners, couples and friends just wanting to shred powder or let rip in the park or pipes. Cardrona is leading the way compared to all other New Zealand ski resorts in terms of facilities and lifts. It boasts New Zealand’s first chondola (Gondola Chair Lift), plus 4 x 4-seater lifts giving access to an incredible mix of terrain. Cardrona also excels when it comes to beginners with their 3 conveyor lifts! And did we mention Cardrona offers the most reliable snow conditions across New Zealand’s ski resorts?! Boasting eight distinctly different cafes, fully licensed kids’ centres, on-mountain accommodation, Cardrona is pure gold.

Where to stay Wanaka or Queenstown. Cardrona does offer on-mountain accommodation, though you need to book a year in advance.

Where is Cardrona? 30 minute drive from the town of Wanaka

Closest Airport Queenstown (Wanaka is a 1-hour drive from Queenstown Airport)

Why ski or snowboard at Cardrona? Best overall New Zealand ski resort, best beginner terrain, best family New Zealand ski resort, best facilities!

Kids-Cardrona-Alpine-Resort-Family

Treble Cone

Treble Cone offers an exceptional New Zealand mountain experience for snow lovers. For those new to snow sports, Treble Cone’s snowsports school and beginners area offers gentle progression, located alongside the comforts of the Base Lodge and Café. For the more adventurous, Treble Cone is renowned for long, immaculately groomed runs and some of the best off-piste terrain in New Zealand – wide open faces and steep chutes filled with dry, cold snow. Treble Cone is located a short 30 minute drive from Wanaka – or just hop on board the free bus and take in the view – the only free ski bus out of all New Zealand ski resorts!  Around 40% of Treble Cone’s trails are suitable for intermediate skiers and riders and offers the longest vertical descent in the Southern Lakes region. A great warm up run to build your confidence is Easy Rider or Roller Coaster from the top of the Home Basin Express chairlift. Then, once you’ve found your ski legs, progress across to the Saddle Basin quad. From the chair, you get a great view across the whole of the Saddle Basin and can easily pick out the different trails and plan your run. Treble Cone is known for its advanced terrain. The Home Basin, the Powder Bowl and the chutes above it, are an advanced skier’s dream and you can pick a different line every run. The natural terrain with its ridges and gullies catch the snow and you can almost always find some great powder stashes even a few days after a storm. The Matukituki Basin, accessed from the 6-seater, is a real hidden gem, that’s usually only frequented by the locals. It’s worth scoping out – if nothing else for the epic views of Mount Aspiring.

Where to stay Wanaka

Where is Treble Cone? 30 minute drive from the town of Wanaka

Closest Airport Queenstown (Wanaka is a 1-hour drive from Queenstown Airport)

Why ski or snowboard at Treble Cone? Best natural features and terrain, epic views over Lake Wanaka, uncrowded and best New Zealand ski resort vibe!

Ski lift Treble Cone ski field Wanaka, New Zealand

Mt Hutt

Voted NZ’s Best Ski Resort four years in a row (2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018). One of the largest and highest ski areas in the South Island and a big mountain experience for skiers and snowboarders. It’s perfect for every age and ability and fantastic for families. A network of progressive terrain parks and dedicated learning facilities. Mt Hutt is an easy 35 minute drive from Methven, the closest township and where all skiers tend to stay when skiing at Mt Hutt. The Mt Hutt skiing terrain is brilliant for beginners and intermediates, and in addition to the speedy groomers, the 365 hectares of treeless terrain also provides an infinite number of off-piste lines for advanced riders. The terrain around the periphery of the resort in particular is lots of fun and powderhounds will have a ball after a fresh dump of snow. Lift queues are never an issue as Mount Hutt has undergone recent infrastructure development to significantly improve the efficiency of the lifts. The summit 6 seat high-speed chairlift takes you to the highest point of any ski area in the South Island. From feeling on top of the world, you can cruise down the legendary ‘Broadway’ or take on the chutes and steeps of “The Towers”. Then you can relax with the real NZ flavour that’s unmistakably the country town of Methven.

Where to stay Methven

Where is Mt Hutt? 35 minute drive from the town of Methven or 1.5 hours drive from Christchurch

Closest Airport Christchurch (Methven is a 1.5-hour drive from Christchurch Airport)

Why ski or snowboard at Mt Hutt? Children 10 years and under ski for free! Best snow conditions and excellent lift infrastructure.