Central Otago, South Island

Cardrona 2
Cardrona gondie
Cardrona biking 2
Cardrona biking kids
Cardrona biking 3
Cardrona biking
Cardrona karting 2
Cardrona karting
Cardrona hiking
Cardrona cafe
Cardrona cafe 2

Cardrona Alpine Resort - Adventure Playground

Summer fun at Cardrona

Summer Season: December 2023 - April 2024

Sightseeing Gondola ~ Mountain Carting ~ Mountain Biking ~ Alpine Walking.

Take the gondola to the mountaintop and immerse yourself in a beautiful alpine environment. Cardrona offers incredible sightseeing; both young and old can experience NZ’s most accessible mountain and New Zealand’s highest playground! Adventurous families can explore by mountain cart or bike.
Afterwards, grab a family-sized woodfired pizza from The Lounge and take in those mountain views (open til 8pm every Friday of the season). We have something to put a smile on the face of every member of the family at Cardrona this summer!

Gondola Rides

The McDougall’s Chondola (half chairlift / half gondola) means anyone can get to the top of the mountain! Whether you’re 2 or 92, you can take a gondola cabin to the top of Cardrona and take in the mountain views, breathe in the mountain air, take amazing photos or go for a walk around the mountain.

Walking and Hiking

Walking & Hiking at Cardrona lets you immerse yourself in a beautiful alpine environment above 1800m! Breathe the fresh alpine air & take in the stunning 360 degree views of the Southern Alps, Lake Wakatipu & Lake Wanaka. You can choose between a gentle chairlift-assisted stroll from the top of the McDougall’s Chondola down to the Base area, or a more adventurous hike on our Captain’s Circuit alpine trails.  While you're up there, check out our giant scenic swing located behind the McDougall's Chondola top station!

Mountain Carting

Experience Cardrona’s newest gravity-fuelled activity – Mountain Carting!  No prior experience is needed for this fun downhill activity, just a sense of adventure & a thirst for FUN!  We've got three mountain cart trails to choose from, the longest of which is over 3km and spans all the way out to Captain's Basin and back to Whitestar Express. Ride the lift and get faster on every lap as you become more familiar with the course and our unique mountain carts!

Drivers must be at least 100cm height and 8 years+.
Kids under 100cm can ride tandem on mountain carts (so everyone can go). 
Our stable carts are designed for comfort, performance and safety and we have four sizes available.

Mountain Biking at Cardrona Bike Park

Enjoy lift-accessed downhill Mountain Bike Trails for all abilities to enjoy! Lap the lifts daily from 10am to 4pm or til 6pm during peak periods (26th Dec-22nd Jan).
With beginner, intermediate and advanced trails, a FREE learner zone, flow tracks and even a bike school offering private lessons, you'll have plenty to explore all day!
Mountain bike rental, including kids' bikes, plus safety gear, all available at Cardrona Bike Park.  Season passes available

The Lounge

The Lounge is open all summer long for all your sunshine alpine dining needs! Cardrona will also be open for a full dinner service every night. Whether you’re here for a rip down the trails on your mountain bike, a relaxing day exploring the mountain on foot, or a blast on our mountain carts, there’s something to keep you going up at The Lounge this summer!

On Friday nights all the mountain activities including our Lounge, are open till 8pm – make sure you check out our TGIF late night beer & pizza.

Map of New Zealand
  • Central Otago
  • Auckland
  • Bay of Plenty
  • Christchurch
  • Dunedin
  • Coromandel
  • Gisborne
  • Fiordland
  • Marlborough Sounds
  • Manawatu
  • Northland
  • North Canterbury
  • Queenstown
  • South Canterbury
  • Taranaki
  • Southland
  • Taupo
  • Wanaka
  • Waikato
  • Wellington
  • West Coast
  • Whangarei
  • Bay of Islands
  • Tauranga
  • Gisborne
  • Hamilton
  • Napier
  • Kapiti
  • Palmerston North
  • Whanganui
  • New Plymouth
  • Arrowtown
  • Te Anau
  • Akaroa
  • Ashburton
  • Hanmer
  • Kaikoura
  • Methven
  • Mt Cook
  • Oamaru
  • Tekapo
  • Timaru
  • Abel Tasman
  • Motueka
  • Nelson Lakes
  • Blenheim
  • Picton
  • Catlins
  • Gore
  • Stewart Island
  • Central Plateau
  • Invercargill
  • Cromwell
  • Greymouth
  • Hokitika
  • Westport
  • Glenorchy

Our favourite destinations…


New Zealand’s economic heart and biggest city is also an exciting family visitor destination, situated on a sunny harbour with city beaches just minutes away from the CBD. Orientate yourself by heading down to Viaduct Harbour, wandering the waterfront, checking out the super yachts or enjoying the waterfront restaurants. Nearby is the must-visit Sky Tower along with excellent and kid-friendly museums and tons of exciting activities!


Wellington is New Zealand’s capital. Here you will find New Zealand's parliament buildings, including the 'Executive Wing', more well-known as 'The Beehive' due to its distinctive shape. Another icon to look out for is the Wellington Tram, which was the main means of public transport between 1878 and 1964.


With a population of around 400,000 Christchurch, in Canterbury, is the South Island ’s largest city, yet much of it has the feel of a small town. Perhaps that’s why it’s known as the Garden City but with the expansive Hagley Park, Botanic Gardens, Port Hills, River Avon and numerous beaches the city certainly has an open, relaxed feel that’s hard to beat.


With its well-deserved reputation as New Zealand’s activity adventure capital you’ll never run out of activities and things to do in Queenstown, but you may run out of time! With breathtaking scenery, activities and festivals, cafes and restaurants, skiing and snowboarding, shopping and wineries, this lakeside alpine resort rates as one of the world’s top vacation destinations for all ages and seasons.


Rotorua sits on the shore of Lake Rotorua, one of sixteen lakes in the area formed by hundreds of thousands of years of eruptions from the Taupo Volcanic Zone. The area is renowned for its geothermal activity and top of any activity list is to see the bubbling mud pools that are around the region for yourself. The Waimangu Volcanic Valley offers a first hand insight into the devastation caused by the 1886 eruption of Mount Tarawera and is a great place to discover steaming volcanic craters and bubbling, spitting  pools of mud!

Nelson and Golden Bay

The Nelson and Golden Bay regions, at the top of the South Island, boast enviable sunshine hours, glorious sandy beaches, safe swimming spots, lots of wildlife to look out for, and Abel Tasman National Park - an absolute must to explore, on foot, by kayak, your own craft or watertaxi.  Nelson is home to a vibrant arts and crafts community with a fabulous Saturday market, and is close to award-winning wineries and family-friendly bike tracks to take you around the coast.

Hawkes Bay

Napier was rebuilt after the 1931 earthquake and is now known as NZ's Art Deco City.  The Art Deco influence has created a unique city – nowhere else can you see such a varied concentration of art deco style. With over 2,200 sunshine hours a year, Napier is a year-round holiday destination with countless activities to entertain the kids – there's days of entertainment on Marine Parade alone, plus numerous other family-friendly trips and activities.  Add to that the beaches, walks and flat cycle paths, outdoor cafes and entertainment, and you have a perfect holiday destination!


Beautiful, unspoiled beaches, fishing, historic gum fields, kauri forests – the Far North has it all. With subtropical temperatures, it's often known as ‘the Winterless north', with warm, humid summers and mild winters.
Gateway to the Bay of Islands, Paihia is a pretty, lively beachside town and a perfect base for your family holiday. It’s your start point for Bay of Island adventures including day cruises, sailing, kayaking, swimming with dolphins and reef or wreck diving.