Queenstown and Te Anau are two of the most popular travel destinations in the southwest of New Zealand, and it's easy to get between them by car or bus. Here's how to get from Queenstown to Te Anau.
Duration: 2 hours
Many travelers to New Zealand like the flexibility of renting a car. If you've flown into Queenstown, you can easily pick up a rental car there.
The 106-mile (172 km) journey between Queenstown and Te Anau takes around two hours. Head south from Queenstown on State Highway (SH) 6. The first part of the journey follows the edge of Lake Wakatipu. About halfway through the journey, you'll need to turn west onto SH 97. The road to Te Anau is well-signposted. Continue west until you reach Te Anau. The journey is quite easy as the road largely passes through flat country.
Duration: 2.5 - 3 hours
If you don't have your own wheels, it's still easy to get from Queenstown to Te Anau. Several direct buses make the trip every day, in the morning and the afternoon/early evening.
If you want to take a longer, quieter route, some buses travel the "back road" to Te Anau via Von Valley. This route isn't suitable for self-driving as it follows paths not marked on maps, passes through farmland, conservation areas, and crosses streams. Not many travelers take this route, so it's important to book well in advance to ensure the service is running on the day you want to go.