Arthurs Point: A Gold Mining Town with a Rich Past and a Vibrant Present

Discover the beauty of Arthurs Point with stunning mountain views and outdoor adventures. Explore the natural wonders of this charming New Zealand town.

Arthurs Point Queenstown
Arthurs Point as viewed from Moonlight Track. Featuring the Shotover River and Shotover Jet in the foreground.

Arthurs Point: A Gold Mining Town with a Rich Past and a Vibrant Present


Hey there, readers! Are you ready to embark on a journey through time to discover the captivating history and allure of Arthurs Point? Nestled in the heart of New Zealand’s South Island, this former gold mining town has transformed into a vibrant destination, beckoning travelers and locals alike with its rich heritage and endless opportunities for adventure.

Gold Rush Beginnings

In the mid-1860s, the discovery of gold in the Arrow River ignited a frenzy, drawing thousands of hopeful miners to Arthurs Point. The town quickly became a bustling hub of activity, with tents and makeshift shacks sprouting up along the riverbanks. As fortunes were made and lost, a colorful cast of characters emerged, including miners, prostitutes, and even the infamous “queen of the cribs,” Jane Smith.

The Golden Mile

The most prominent landmark from the gold rush era is the Golden Mile, a kilometer-long stretch along the Arrow River. Here, visitors can learn about the history of mining through informative plaques and explore the remains of old mining equipment, including water races and tailing heaps.

A Thriving Alpine Destination

Today, Arthurs Point has evolved into a year-round alpine destination, attracting adventure seekers and nature enthusiasts from around the world. The town offers a diverse range of activities, from white-water rafting and bungy jumping to hiking and mountain biking. For those seeking a more relaxed experience, scenic walks and charming cafes line the riverbanks, inviting visitors to soak in the beauty of the surrounding mountains.

AJ Hackett Bungy

One of Arthurs Point’s most popular attractions is AJ Hackett Bungy, located at the Kawarau Gorge Suspension Bridge. Adrenaline junkies can take the plunge from 43 meters above the churning waters of the Kawarau River, enjoying breathtaking views of the surrounding canyon.

Shotover Jet

Another iconic experience in Arthurs Point is the Shotover Jet, a thrilling jet boat ride through the narrow canyons and swirling rapids of the Shotover River. The skilled drivers navigate the river with precision, giving passengers an exhilarating ride while providing informative commentary on the area’s history and geology.

A Hub for Adventure and Heritage

Arthurs Point is both a haven for adventure enthusiasts and a treasure trove of historical significance. The town’s rich past is evident in its charming buildings, including the historic Arthurs Point Hotel, which dates back to 1867. Visitors can delve into the town’s history at the Arthurs Point History Museum, which houses a collection of artifacts and photographs chronicling the gold rush era and the town’s subsequent transformation.

Queenstown Trail

For those who prefer a more leisurely pace, the Queenstown Trail provides a picturesque walking and cycling route that stretches 110 kilometers along the shores of Lake Wakatipu and the Shotover River. The trail offers stunning views of the surrounding mountains and passes through historic sights, including Arthurs Point.

Table: Arthurs Point Essential Information

Aspect Details
Location Otago region, South Island, New Zealand
Population Approximately 200
Key Attractions AJ Hackett Bungy, Shotover Jet, Arthurs Point Hotel, Arthurs Point History Museum, Queenstown Trail
Activities White-water rafting, bungy jumping, hiking, mountain biking, walking, cycling
Accommodation Range of options, including lodges, motels, and holiday homes
Dining Cafes, restaurants, and bars offering a variety of cuisines


Arthurs Point is a captivating destination that seamlessly blends its rich gold mining past with its vibrant present-day offerings. Whether you’re seeking an adrenaline-pumping adventure or a leisurely escape into nature and history, Arthurs Point has something to offer every traveler. So, pack your bags, readers, and head to this charming town where the spirit of the gold rush lives on, side by side with the thrill of modern-day adventures. Don’t forget to check out our other articles for more travel inspiration and insider tips on the hidden gems of New Zealand and beyond!

FAQ about Arthur’s Point

What is Arthur’s Point?

Arthur’s Point is a small village located near Queenstown, New Zealand. It is named after Arthur Barnett, a gold miner who was the first European to settle in the area.

What is there to do in Arthur’s Point?

Arthur’s Point is a popular destination for adventure activities such as bungee jumping, jet boating, and white-water rafting. It is also home to the Shotover River, which is known for its beautiful scenery and challenging rapids.

Where can I stay in Arthur’s Point?

There are a number of accommodation options in Arthur’s Point, including motels, guesthouses, and backpacker hostels.

How do I get to Arthur’s Point?

Arthur’s Point is located approximately 10 kilometers from Queenstown. It can be reached by car, bus, or taxi.

Is Arthur’s Point a good place to go with children?

Arthur’s Point is a great place to go with children, as there are a number of family-friendly activities available, such as the AJ Hackett Bungy Jumping Centre and the Shotover Jet.

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