Ski fever hits New Zealand

Chris Ashton

Ski season has officially arrived with the opening of Coronet Peak ski field, offering some of the best early-June conditions for years.

The first ski field to open in Australasia, with 30cm on the lower slopes and 40cm at the top, the mountain will no doubt see a lot of Aussie travellers this year.

The view from Skyline Queenstown

Coronet Express chairlift fires up at 9am, with the first four up the hill receiving T-shirts, while skiers and boarders get a glass of bubbles to mark the opening.

Access is open to the M1 trail, Upper and Lower Wall Street, Mid Gully, Shirtfront and Million Dollar.

Elsewhere in the district, The Remarkables Ski Field is scheduled to open on June 22, Cardrona Alpine Resort on June 21, and Treble Cone on June 27.

According to Tim Burgess, General Manager - Australia & Indonesia for Tourism New Zealand, a growing number of Aussie skiers are making the journey across the ditch, representing the largest international market on the New Zealand slopes.

“A New Zealand winter holiday offers ‘more magic every day’. From the quality and value of a ski experience, to the range of activities like golf, fishing, hot pools and wine tasting available in our resort towns it is no surprise to see the amount of Australians choosing New Zealand for a ski holiday.”

Norm Thompson, Air New Zealand’s Deputy CEO, said Air New Zealand and Virgin Australia were adding more than 30,000 extra seats between Australia and Queenstown over the peak winter period, allowing easy access to the South Island’s ski fields.

To book a New Zealand winter holiday visit

Find accommodation in Queenstown

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