On Wednesday afternoon, you have the opportunity to see a bit of Dunedin and to enjoy some of the beautiful local attractions. The main excursion will be a walk along the Pineapple Track up to Flagstaff, a prominent hill from which we will have marvellous views of the city, the harbour and the Otago peninsula (or, probably, experience terrible, cold wind, depending on the weather...).
At the registration desk you will be asked to register your interest for the Pineapple Track walk.
Alternatively, you could explore some attractions on your own. Several suggestions are given below.
Pineapple Track walk
The strange name of the track goes back to a tradition from the 1920s. A local grocer guided parties up a track in this area. At the top, he would provide tinned pineapples as a refreshment. For quite some time, many empty cans could be found in the area.
(Note that, since environmental pollution is no longer a trivial offence, we will not provide pineapples. Instead, everyone is invited to bring their own, eco-friendly, picnic!)
- We will meet at 1.30 pm and take a bus to the start of the Pineapple Track in the north-west of Dunedin.
- The return trip to Flagstaff and back is 7.4 km long.
- It brings us from about 180 m to an altitude of 666 m.
- The entire walk should take about 3.5 hours.
Some more things to do
Dunedin Botanic Garden
Have a stroll through the Dunedin Botanic Garden, New Zealand's oldest garden, established in 1863. It is located just 700 m from the University. Enjoy the rose and herb gardens, the heated Edwardian glass house, a duck pond, a Japanese garden, bush walks, a geographic plant collection, a small aviary (with a cockatoo that may kindly offer you to "have a cup of tea"), a native plant collection and an extensive rhododendron dell. Afterwards, you could relax in the Croque-o-dile Cafe.
- Garden: open daily from dawn to dusk
- Admission: free
- Croque-o-dile cafe: open 9.30am - 4.30pm
The Otago Museum is adjacent to the University campus. With over 480,000 visitors each year, it is one of the city's leading attractions. The galleries include: animal attic, maritime, nature, pacific cultures, people of the world, and tāngata whenua. There will also be a Special Exhibition to mark the 150th anniversary of the museum. Moreover, the museum has a large tropical butterfly rainforest and the perpetual guardian planetarium - the first 3D planetarium in the southern hemisphere.
- Open daily 10am - 5pm
- Museum: free
- Science Centre with rainforest: $15, Planetarium: $10 (or $12 for 3D shows)
Toitū Otago Settlers Museum
The Settlers Museum tells the story of the people of the Dunedin region. Its themed galleries feature interactive displays and trace the human history of the area, from the earliest settlers to the most recent arrivals.
- Open daily 10am - 5pm
- Admission free
- 31 Queens Garden (near the railway station)
Taieri Gorge and Seasider train ride
Departing from Dunedin's beautiful railway station, two scenic train rides are available. The Taieri Gorge Railway travels through the spectacular Taieri River Gorge, offering amazing views and gives a fascinating insight to the building of the railway line and life of those hardy pioneers. The Seasider travels along the picturesque Otago Harbour before traversing the cliff tops overlooking the dazzling Pacific Ocean.
- Taieri Gorge Railway: 4 h return, $105
- Seasider: 90 min return, $60
- See here for timetables.
The Otago Peninsula Wildlife Tour is a half-day tour discovering the natural beauty and wildlife of the Otago Peninsula. The M. V. Monarch will bring you to Taiaroa Head, the only mainland nesting place of northern royal albatross in the world. An additional 90 min guided tour of the Penguin Place Conversation Reserve is available. (This can also be done separately, see below.)
- Wildlife Tour (harbour cruise + wildlife cruise + bus tour): $92
- Wildlife Tour with Penguin Place: $150
- Tours depart from 20 Fryatt St
Yellow-eyed penguin reserve
The Penguin Place Convervation Reserve is dedicated to helping the endangered Yellow-Eyed Penguin survive. In a guided 90 min tour you can learn about the conservation reserve, the issues the penguins are facing and visit the rehabilitation facility for penguins.
- Tours are available at various times from 10.15am until dark.
- Cost: $55
- 45 Pakihau Rd, Harington Point
Royal Albatross Centre
Taiaroa Head is a headland at the end of the Otago Peninsula. The cape is home to a lighthouse and a colony of over 100 northern royal albatrosses. Come into the exclusive observatory of the Royal Albatross Centre to see these majestic birds, and learn fascinating insights from expert guides.
- Open daily from 10.15 am till dusk, tours from 11 am.
- Various options available, see here for details.
The Speight’s Tour is a fully guided tour around a historic working Brewery. You will see and touch some of the ingredients that go into making Speight’s beers, and find out how Speight’s became a legend not only in the south but right around the country. Even if you’re not a beer drinker, you’ll enjoy learning about the history of beer making and hear some of the yarns from years gone by.
- Brewery tours available at 12pm, 2pm, 4pm, 5pm, 6pm, 7pm
- Cost: $30
- 200 Rattray St