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    Walter Peak, Queenstown
  • 0259-Walter-Peak-Independent-Cycling.jpg 0259-Walter-Peak-Independent-Cycling.jpg
    Walter Peak, Queenstown

Departure Location

Real Journeys Visitor Centre on Steamer Wharf, Queenstown Bay

What’s included

  • TSS Earnslaw Cruise
  • Small map 
  • Snack voucher that can be redeemed on board the TSS Earnslaw for one drink (tea, coffee, hot chocolate or soft drink) and your choice of one food item (muffin, slice of cake or a small packet of chips/peanuts)

What to bring

  • Mountain bike
  • Safety helmet
  • Bike repair kit
  • Day pack
  • Lunch, drink/snacks
  • Walking shoes
  • Waterproof jacket
  • Warm sweater/fleece jacket
  • Sunscreen/sunglasses/sunhat
  • Insect repellent
  • Camera

Key Information

  • You can hire mountain bikes in Queenstown from Outside Sports or other local suppliers
  • You need to be fully self-sufficient with food and drinks and to be well equipped in terms of gear and clothing. The cycling route along the Back Road is remote and there are no shops or other services of any kind
  • Safety helmets must be worn on the road and cyclists must not enter adjoining privately owned farmland
  • In the colder months be aware there are less daylight hours
  • There is no accommodation on the western side of Lake Wakatipu, so it is important cyclists ensure they make their return cruise back to Queenstown

TSS Earnslaw return cruise departure times from Walter Peak

TSS Earnslaw departs Walter Peak for Queenstown at the following times:

Seasons Departs from Walter Peak
29 Jun 2015 - mid May 2016 12.45pm, 2.45pm & 4.45pm
Mid May 2016 - mid Jul 2016 TSS Earnslaw is on survey and NOT
operating during these times
Mid Jul 2016 - 31 Oct 2016 12.45pm, 2.45pm & 4.45pm 

Please check in 30 minutes prior to departure times shown above.

Booking process

The booking process only requires you to select your departure time from Queenstown. At check-in you can choose your preferred return time from Walter Peak and you will be advised of return check-in procedures.

It is essential that you allow adequate time to make your return cruise to Queenstown.  (There is no accommodation or direct road access back to Queenstown from this western side of Lake Wakatipu). 

About the TSS Earnslaw

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TSS Earnslaw Vintage Steamship, 1912

The TSS Earnslaw is an integral part of Queenstown’s pioneering history and to this day a Queenstown icon.

She was commissioned by New Zealand Railways to service the communities around Lake Wakatipu. Launched in the same year as the Titanic, the TSS Earnslaw’s maiden voyage was on 18 October 1912.

Soon known as The Lady of the Lake, she provided an essential link between the isolated farming communities along the lake and the outside world. At 48 metres long, she was the biggest boat on the Lake and carried passengers, sheep, cattle, mail and supplies.

Nearly scrapped in 1968, she was rescued and purchased by Real Journeys and put to work once again carrying passengers around the Lake. Since then the TSS Earnslaw has been painstakingly restored to its original condition – everything you see is pretty much like it was a 100 years ago. Today, the TSS Earnslaw is the only coal fired steamship in operation in the southern hemisphere, making her one of the most unique experiences in the world.

The TSS Earnslaw has featured in several movies including a cameo in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull as an Amazon River Boat. Parts of the trawler SS Venture in Peter Jackson’s King Kong were inspired by the TSS Earnslaw. Famous composer Ron Goodwin composed a piece of music inspired by the rhythm of the TSS Earnslaw’s engines.

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