A Travel Price Comparison for New Zealand Fiordland National Park vs. Queenstown for Food, Hiking, Families, and Couples

Should you visit Fiordland National Park or Queenstown?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Which city is more affordable and which is best for your travel style? If you're trying to figure out where to go next, comparing the travel costs between Fiordland National Park and Queenstown can help you decide which place is right for you.

Fiordland National Park

Fiordland National Park is a world famous, stunning, and iconic national park. You'll find world class beauty here as well. It's also known for hiking.

Queenstown

Queenstown is a spirited, bustling, and active city. This is also a very beautiful destination which attracts plenty of visitors. Other reasons to visit include hiking, shopping, and skiing.

Fiordland National Park and Queenstown: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Good for hiking
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Impressive beauty
  • Home to the Milford Track
Things to Consider
  • Less popular for food
  • Public transit not as usable
  • Less walkable
Pros
  • Popular for skiing
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Popular for food and cuisine
  • Active nightlife
  • Good for hiking
  • Fun shopping
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Good for students
  • Good public transit
  • Very walkable
  • Impressive beauty


Is there more to do in Fiordland National Park or Queenstown?

Tourists will generally find more to do in Queenstown. Although Fiordland National Park and Queenstown are both popular with visitors, Queenstown has more sights, activities, and attractions for travelers. Queenstown is more popular for its skiing, museums, food, nightlife, and shopping, while Fiordland National Park is known for its impressive beauty. Fiordland National Park is popular for its world renowned hiking trails and stunning natural environments. Queenstown is popular for its world class skiing, adrenaline-filled adventure sports, and stunning mountain scenery. It is also home to Kawarau Bridge.

How is Fiordland National Park different from Queenstown?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Queenstown and Fiordland National Park. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Is Fiordland National Park or Queenstown Better for Skiing?

Fiordland National Park
Queenstown

Queenstown is a world-class destination for skiing and snowboarding. However, Fiordland National Park is not a skiing destination.

Queenstown is among the world's best ski destinations. There are four ski areas that are near the city, and many consider these among the best ski fields in New Zealand. The ski season runs from June until October and the skiing is world class.

Fiordland National Park is not a skiing destination.


Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Fiordland National Park or Queenstown?

Fiordland National Park
Queenstown

Queenstown is a decent place to visit for its museums and history. However, Fiordland National Park does not have museums and landmarks.

While most people don't head to Queenstown specifically for the museums and attractions, it does offer a few options. People head to this city for its amazing outdoor activities, but you won't find much if you're looking for museums. You can check out the Lakes District Museum though.

Fiordland National Park does not have museums and landmarks.

Is the Food Better in Fiordland National Park or Queenstown? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Fiordland National Park
Queenstown

Queenstown is a world-class destination for its restaurants. However, Fiordland National Park is lacking in good options for its restaurant scene.

Queenstown has long been recognized as a culinary destination with great restaurants. Located in the heart of the Otago wine region, this city has many award-winning restaurants. Local dishes, vegan cafes, and international flavors all make for a cosmopolitan and world class dining scene.

You'll find the standard options when it comes to food in Fiordland National Park. Te Anau is a town that serves as the basecamp for the park, and there are a range of restaurants and cafes there. Once you're in the park the dining options are limited, so it's best to come prepared with your own food supplies.

Is Fiordland National Park or Queenstown Better for Nightlife?

Fiordland National Park
Queenstown

Queenstown is a very popular place for nightlife. However, Fiordland National Park is not a destination with noteworthy nightlife.

Queenstown has a large number of nightlife venues. This cosmopolitan town has some of the best nightlife in the country. There are laid back pubs, trendy cocktail bars, and live music venues that make for a fun night out.

Fiordland National Park is not a destination with noteworthy nightlife.


Is Fiordland National Park or Queenstown Better for Hiking?

Fiordland National Park
Queenstown

You'll find first-rate hiking in both Fiordland National Park and Queenstown.

Many people visit Fiordland National Park specifically for its hiking. The park has world class hiking, and this is the main activity for most visitors. There are three main trails in the park, as well as many shorter hikes that you can do. Milford Track is probably the most famous hike, and it is often considered one of the best hikes in the world. Routeburn Track is a multi-day trek that passes through a variety of environments and landscapes. Other popular trails include Kepler Track, Hollyford Track, and Dusky Track.

Known for its hiking, Queenstown draws a crowd to experience the nature and the trails. The city is ideally located near some of the country's best hiking. There are walks through beech forests, along rugged mountains, and to stunning views. Several of the Great Walks are in the area as well, but if you're looking for something a little simpler, then there are many options also.

Is the Shopping Better in Fiordland National Park or Queenstown?

Fiordland National Park
Queenstown

Queenstown is a very popular place for shopping. However, Fiordland National Park is not a noteworthy shopping destination.

Shopping is a popular activity when visiting Queenstown. It's a bustling city with designer brands and boutique shopping. There are also souvenir shops and retail outlets.

Fiordland National Park is not a noteworthy shopping destination.

Is Fiordland National Park or Queenstown Better for Families?

Fiordland National Park
Queenstown

Fiordland National Park is a world-class destination for its family-friendly activities. Also, Queenstown is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its kid-friendly activities.

With a huge array of activities for kids, Fiordland National Park is very family-friendly. It's the largest national park in New Zealand, and it makes a great playground for the whole family. It's the perfect place to go for a hike or learn about the natural world. There are dolphins and seals, waterfalls, and glowworm caves. There are also fun adventures like kayaking and jet skiing.

Because of its large number of kid-friendly activities, Queenstown is very family-friendly. Kids will enjoy the Queenstown cable car and the Skyline Gondola. After a ride on the gondola, you can even take the luge back down! The city also offers lake cruises, family-friendly farm tours, boat tours, and kayaking.


Is Fiordland National Park or Queenstown Better for Couples?

Fiordland National Park
Queenstown

Both Fiordland National Park and Queenstown are first-rate destinations to visit as a couple.

For those traveling as a couple, Fiordland National Park has plenty to offer. Couples who love the great outdoors will be in heaven in this stunning national park. There's gorgeous scenery, romantic boat trips, and world class hikes that are not to be missed.

Queenstown has so much to offer for a romantic couple's vacation. The city is known for its adrenaline-filled adventure activities and couples who enjoy a thrill will appreciate the fun. There are also hot springs, boat cruises, and wine tours in the area. One of the most romantic activities is dinner at the Skyline.

Is Fiordland National Park or Queenstown Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Fiordland National Park
Queenstown

Fiordland National Park and Queenstown are both first-rate destinations for backpackers.

Many backpackers frequent Fiordland National Park. As the largest national park in New Zealand, this is a world class backpackers destination and it is filled with amazing multi-day treks and once in a lifetime experiences.

Backpackers and budget travelers come from all over the world to visit Queenstown. With its thrill-seeking activities and nearby skiing, this is a great backpacker destination year round.

Is Fiordland National Park or Queenstown Better for Students?

Fiordland National Park
Queenstown

Queenstown is a very popular place for its student-friendly activities. However, Fiordland National Park is not popular with students.

Queenstown is very popular with students. There are excellent universities in the area as well as fun activities and a lively energy that students enjoy.

Fiordland National Park is not popular with students.


Is Fiordland National Park or Queenstown Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Fiordland National Park
Queenstown

Queenstown is very good for times when you don't have a car. However, Fiordland National Park is lacking in good options for its public transit.

Queenstown has some public transit options. There's a decent bus system that travels around town.

Public transit is limited or non-existant in Fiordland National Park. Public transit is basically nonexistent in the park and there are few roads as well. Even so, having your own car is important as it gives you the flexibility to reach the sections that you want to visit.

Is Fiordland National Park or Queenstown a more walkable city?

Fiordland National Park
Queenstown

Queenstown is a very popular place for its walkability. However, Fiordland National Park is lacking in good options for its high level of walkability.

Queenstown is very walkable. In town, many of the sights and activities can be reached on foot.

Fiordland National Park is generally not very walkable. There are trails throughout the park and it's possible to access it on foot via Routeburn Track from Mt. Aspiring National Park.

For even more information, also check out Is Fiordland National Park Worth Visiting? and Is Queenstown Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Queenstown or Fiordland National Park?

How long in Fiordland National Park or Queenstown?

Both Fiordland National Park and Queenstown have a number of activities to choose from. With generally more activities and things to do, visitors tend to spend more time in Queenstown than in Fiordland National Park. Usually, 3-6 days is a good amount of time for Fiordland National Park, and 2-7 days is enough time in Queenstown.

Couples should spend more time in Queenstown than Fiordland National Park. You'll find plenty of romantic sights and fun activities in Queenstown that are perfect for a weekend getaway or a longer couple's trip.

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Queenstown than Fiordland National Park if your budget allows for it. With a larger number of budget-friendly sights, good nightlife, and active things to do, anyone traveling on a budget would have a good time in Queenstown.


  • How many days in Fiordland National Park or Queenstown? Ideal Length of Stay
    Fiordland National Park 3-6 
    Queenstown 2-7

One day in Fiordland National Park or Queenstown?

With around the world famous national park of Fiordland National Park, there's plenty to do. Anyone can find something fun to do here. One of the main draws to the area is the hiking. Make sure you spend some time hiking while you're in the area. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than one day exploring.

You'll find skiing and nightlife around the nature-oriented city of Queenstown. Many visitors also spend a good bit of time hiking. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision. One day is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do.


A weekend in Fiordland National Park or Queenstown?

With around the destination of Fiordland National Park, there's plenty to do. Many travelers plan to spend time hiking while in the area. It offers something for everyone. One of the main draws to the area is the hiking. With so much to do, a weekend is probably not enough time to see everything.

Queenstown is a popular choice for travelers. A weekend here is typical. Make sure you spend some time hiking while you're in the area. So, a weekend is just the right amount of time to spend here. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

Five days in Fiordland National Park or Queenstown?

Fiordland National Park, a popular national park, is full of activities for travelers. This is a popular place to visit for five days. Hiking can easily take up a good amount of your time here, too. In five days, you should have a good grasp of this national park. Your budget might influence how long you stay.

Queenstown is a great place to explore. It is common to spend five days here. So, five days is just the right amount of time to spend here. Take your pick from the many activities offered here.

A week in Fiordland National Park or Queenstown?

Fiordland National Park is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. One of the main draws to the area is the hiking. One week is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Queenstown. For many, it makes a great getaway for one week. Hiking can easily take up a good amount of your time here, too. If you enjoy all that's offered here, then one week is just the right amount of time to spend here. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.


For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Eco Tours in New Zealand, The Best Thrill-Seeking Tours in New Zealand, The Best Romantic Tours for Couples in New Zealand, and The Best Luxury Tours to New Zealand.


Which place is cheaper, Queenstown or Fiordland National Park?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Fiordland National Park is $100, while the average daily cost in Queenstown is $108. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Fiordland National Park and Queenstown in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Fiordland National Park $50
    Queenstown $57
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Fiordland National Park $100
    Queenstown $114
Compare Hotels in Fiordland National Park and Queenstown

Looking for a hotel in Fiordland National Park or Queenstown? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Fiordland National Park


Hotels in Queenstown


Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.


Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Queenstown Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Fiordland National Park $43
    Queenstown $11

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Queenstown

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Queenstown:

  • Tasman Glacier Helihike with Flight Transfers: $922
  • Milford Sound Cruise with Helicopter Transfer: $762
  • Queenstown Airport: One-Way Private Transfer to Queenstown: $30
  • Private Transfers from Queenstown Airport to Wanaka : $186
  • Private Transfer from Wanaka to Queenstown Central: $186
  • Private Transfer from Wanaka to Queenstown Airport: $186
  • Private Transfer from Queenstown Central to Wanaka: $186
  • Private Transfer from Queenstown Airport to Milford Sound Port: $167
  • From Mount Cook Transfer w/ Guided Landmark Tour: $108

Is it cheaper to fly into Fiordland National Park or Queenstown?

Prices for flights to both Queenstown and Fiordland National Park change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.





Food
  • Food Meals for one day
    Fiordland National Park $24
    Queenstown $37

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Queenstown

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Queenstown.

  • Bar Crawl with 5 Free Shots and Pizza: $18
  • Dinner at Walter Peak High Country Farm and Cruise from Queenstown: $119
  • Queenstown Progressive Dinner Tour | Experience 3 Locations: $214

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Fiordland National Park $21
    Queenstown $22

Tours and Activities in Fiordland National Park

For Fiordland National Park, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • Te Anau: River Jet Boat and Bike Ride Tour with Local Guide: $135

Typical Entertainment Prices in Queenstown

Some typical examples of activities, tours, and entrance ticket prices in Queenstown are as follows:


  • Skyline Gondola (for 2)
    $31

Tours and Activities in Queenstown

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Queenstown are as follows:

  • 20-Minute Remarkables Helicopter Tour from Queenstown: $206
  • All About Paradise Glenorchy Tour: $119
  • Arrowtown To A Full Day Mountain Biking Adventure: $57
  • Arrowtown and Around Half-Day Small-Group Tour: $88
  • Arrowtown and Wanaka Highlights Tour from Queenstown: $132
  • Boutique Winery Half-Day Tour & Vineyard Platter-Style Lunch: $147
  • Challenger Self Drive Guided Buggy Tour from Queenstown: $297
  • Dart River Canoe and Jet Boat Experience from Queenstown: $278
  • Dart River Jet Boat and Wilderness Experience: $194
  • E-Bike Rental for Lake Dunstan Trail Experience : $117
  • Earnslaw Burn Explorer Helicopter Tour: $609
  • Earnslaw Burn Express Helicopter Tour: $516

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Fiordland National Park $8.35
    Queenstown $9.22

Sample the Local Flavors in Queenstown

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Queenstown:

  • Ice Bar Crawl: $25
  • Hop on Hop off Wine Tours Queenstown : $50
  • Queenstown & Gibbston Valley: Hop-On Hop-Off Wine Tours: $55
  • Hop on Hop off Wine Tours Bannockburn - departing Queenstown: $63
  • Afternoon Wine Tasting Tour with 3 Wineries: $102
  • Original Wine Tour: $105
  • Queenstown Classic Wine Tour: 3 Vineyards, Caves and Cheeseboard: $113
  • Afternoon brewery tour with lunch: $114
  • Classic Wine Tour: $122
  • Wine Tasting Tour: $135
  • Queenstown Wine Tour with Wine Dog | Adults Only: $136
  • Central Otago Wine Tour from Queenstown Including Lunch: $136


When comparing the travel costs between Fiordland National Park and Queenstown, we can see that Queenstown is more expensive. However, the two cities are actually relatively comparable in price, as the difference is somewhat minimal. Generally, this means that you could travel with generally the same travel style and level of luxury in each place. Since both cities are in Pacific, it's no surprise that their costs are relatively close, as many destinations here have somewhat similar travel prices overall.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Fiordland National Park Expensive? and Is Queenstown Expensive?.