A vibrant, architecturally splendid city framed by a magnificent harbour, Dunedin is the nature and heritage centre of New Zealand and gateway to an arresting hinterland. Located on the east coast of the South Island, it is much more than a one night stay.
Otago Peninsula, is renowned for the world’s only mainland albatross breeding colony at Taiaroa Head and various other ocean bird, seal and penguin species, including one of the world’s rarest, the yellow eyed penguin.
Dunedin is widely regarded as the best preserved Victorian and Edwardian heritage city in the southern hemisphere. It is also home to some of New Zealand’s top fashion designers and vibrant cafes and bars. The Clock Tower at the University of Otago, New Zealand’s oldest and most pre-eminent University, tolls the hours for the lively students who make up almost a fifth of the city’s population.
The rugged but welcoming hinterland can be accessed via the Taieri Gorge Railway which enables a link to Middlemarch and the Otago Central Rail Trail. Alternatively it scales the cliff tops to provide spectacular views of Port Chalmers and the Pacific Ocean coastline on its Seasider route.
Few cities anywhere on earth have such a richly diverse coastal wildlife population, including many Antarctic species that prefer Dunedin’s kinder climes. Taiaroa Head is the world’s only mainland albatross breeding colony, amazingly within sight of the city’s skyscape.
Visit the Royal Albatross Centre for an insight into these majestic ocean wanderers. There is a large colony of Shags perched on the cliffs below. Visit the home of the world’s rarest penguin, the Yellow-Eyed Penguin and peer in on the shy Little Blue Penguin. Pilots Beach and Otago Peninsula have New Zealand Fur Seals, and sometimes young pups perform aquabatics in the tidal pools.