N ew Zealand has some of the best snow for winter sports in the world and the facilities to go with it. Skiers come from around the world between July and October to enjoy these winter sports during the months it is hot and green in their own countries.

mount Raupehu skiing

Five of the top ski fields in New Zealand are:

1.      There are several ski areas around Queenstown. It is easy to book flights to Queenstown and enjoy Coronet Peak and The Remarkables. Here are some of the steepest slopes as well as beautiful alpine scenery. The Remarkables are one of the most photographed mountain ranges in the world. The world class ski resorts offer lessons for beginners and easy slopes as well as many advanced slopes. It is also a good place for cross country skiing. Coronet Peak is the most popular ski destination on South Island. It has a long ski season and powdery snow and is a good place for families.

2.      Mount Raupehu is an active volcano with two excellent ski resorts on its slopes. These are in Whakapapa and Turoa. The terrain is without trees so there are several options for off-piste with many chutes, bowls and drops. There are 14 lifts, and the snowfall is about four metres per year for excellent skiing and snowboarding. These are the largest ski fields in New Zealand and are suitable for beginners and experts.

3.      Wanaka offers beautiful views of Lake Wanaka and the mountains beyond. Treble Cone is a top ski resort in New Zealand. There is also heli-skiing and snowboarding near Wanaka. This ski destination is only one hour from Queenstown, so visitors can book flights to Queenstown and drive over to this picturesque and tranquil spot for great winter sport. Cardona is also near Wanaka. It has three bowl areas for beginners and expert skiers and snowboarders. It is a good location for families.

4.      Temple Basin takes some effort to reach. Skiers need to hike in, but it is worth the effort. This is the place where devoted skiers come to pay their respect. There is excellent powder and terrain without the crowds of tourists. There are three rope tows and there is good terrain for children and beginners if they can make it in. This is the place where dedicated skiers gather. There is some night skiing for those adventurous people, but others enjoy a lively après ski in the evenings.

5.      Mount Potts is in the backcountry and is a base for heli-skiing. There are no chairlifts or rope tows in this extreme ski resort. Transportation is provided by helicopters and snowcats to the top of the ski areas. It has steep faces, drop-off rocks, chutes, gullies, cornices and wide open powder bowls. This is the harsh landscape seen in Lord of the Rings. The stark beauty keeps people coming back year after year. There is accommodation available for budget travellers as well as luxury travellers. The restaurant serves excellent food prepared by a gourmet chef.




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