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Morning Star Reserve, Queenstown – Stunning Views of the Shotover River

Morning Star Reserve, Queenstown – Stunning Views of the Shotover River

For stunning views of the Shotover River you’ll want to head to the Morning Star Reserve. You can see the river from close to the car park, but I highly recommend also walking the Morning Star Track, which takes you above the river and then down to a tranquil beach area.

Views from Near the Car Park

If you’ve only got a few minutes and want to see some great views, you won’t need to venture far from the car park. You can head up to a viewpoint close to Edith Cavell Bridge and from just below there you can see the river area where the Shotover Jet (jet boat) leaves from. There’s also a brewery / bar.

The Morning Star Track

With a bit more time it’s a good idea to walk the Morning Star Track. It takes 15-minutes each way and takes you to a scenic beach area. There are some great views along the way – we did in autumn and were impressed by the colours, but it’d be nice no matter the season.

The track is very easy and there are views every few minutes. If you’ve kids, or you’re just not a fan of strenuous walks, this is a great option. Every now and again you might see the Shotover Jet roaring past.

The Beach

After a short and scenic walk the beach beckons. There is actual sand there (not just stones like most river beaches) and the water looks pristine on a nice sunny day. We were really impressed with this place – and we only saw one other couple on the whole track!

It was Easter weekend when we did it and most places around Queenstown were packed (especially Arrowtown) – I guess there are so many competing walks and activities that places like this can get lost in the shuffle (which is great if you don’t like crowds).

The Details

The Morning Star Reserve is in Arthurs Point, a short drive from Queenstown. You’ll go there if you’re doing the Shotover Jet, and if you’re not it’s the perfect place to stop for a quick walk. It took us years to visit this place (so many trips to Queenstown since 2017) – definitely an underrated spot. The walk should take you 30 minutes – there’s also one on the other side of the river but we didn’t have time to do it.

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Jon Algie

A travel blogger from New Zealand who has just returned home after 6 years abroad. Join me as I see as much of the South Island as I can.

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