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Dunedin, New Zealand

Come to feel the history of New Zealandís oldest city, which has Victorian and Edwardian architecture on a grand scale. Unique wildlife experiences are another reason enough to visit.

Location

The Otago Coast stretches from the Waitaki River to the mighty Clutha River, on the South Island's eastern coast. About halfway between is Dunedin, built around Otago Harbour, which indents Otago Peninsula.

General Facts

Dunedin region, New Zealand

Dunedin, with a population of 112,000, is the South Island's second-largest city and the commercial centre for the Otago region. Its name is the old Gaelic one for Edinburgh - appropriate since the city was established by Scottish Presbyterians. It is a gracious city whose numerous grand nineteenth-century and Edwardian buildings are unrivalled anywhere in the Southern Hemisphere.

Main Attractions and Activities

Dunedin's architectural heritage has provided the city with some notable buildings, including the train station, town hall, university and many churches. There are also special former private residences worth noting including Olveston, a Jacobean-style family home and Glenfalloch, surrounded by 12 hectares of woodland garden. Neo-Gothic Larnach Castle represents the finest of nineteenth century craftsmanship.

A natural attraction on the Otago Peninsula is the abundant wildlife, only a 15-20 minute drive from the central business district. Nature and wildlife tour companies run daily excursions to view fur seals, endangered yellow-eyed penguin, cormorants and albatross. Nowhere else in the world does the largest of the world's sea birds live within such easy human access.

Further north on the Otago coast is Oamaru, known for the grand white stone buildings of its old harbourside precinct. On Moeraki Beach, about halfway between Oamaru and Dunedin are the unique, perfectly round Moeraki Boulders, which weigh up to four tons each.

Don't Miss

Arial view of Dunedin City, New Zealand
  • Dunedin Public Art Gallery
  • Taieri Gorge railway, Dunedin
  • Olveston historic home, Dunedin
  • Otago Museum, Dunedin
  • Otago Settlers Museum
  • Fortune Theatre
  • Royal albatross colony, Otago Peninsula
  • Dunedin Botanic Gardens
  • Yellow-eyed penguin conservation reserve on Otago Peninsula
  • Dunedin's lively pub scene
  • Oamaru's historic white stone precinct
  • Penguins, Oamaru
  • Moeraki boulders

Main Centres

  • Dunedin - main centre for Otago and second-largest South Island city
  • Oamaru - for white-stone Victorian architecture and blue penguins