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“Unintentional ride but turned out well!”
Review of Crown Range Road

Ranked #241 of 1,196 things to do in South Island
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: The Crown Range Road is the highest main road in New Zealand and offers amazing views.
Level Contributor
25 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Unintentional ride but turned out well!”
Reviewed 28 December 2012

The original plan to go via Cromwell from Wanaka to Queenstown but we took the wrong route and turned into Crown Range instead. Oh well, it turned to be a rather nice, scenic and much shorter ride instead. Especially liked some parts where we felt sandwiched between the gorges and mountains. Some winding and hilly slopes but it wasn't that bad as long as you keep within a safe speed limit, especially nearing turning points. Wonder how we got so high up there where there didn't seem any sleep slopes at some point!

Visited December 2012
1 Thank smNg09
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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77 reviews from our community

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Level Contributor
293 reviews
180 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 178 helpful votes
“Crown Saddle - Highest Sealed Pass in New Zealand”
Reviewed 22 November 2012 via mobile

Have heard many things about the Crown Range Road. "Steep winding climb" "Hairpin turns" We decided, with some trepidation, to give it a try. The weather's good (you may want to avoid it if there's ice and snow on the roads) and it is the shortest route from Queenstown/Arrowtown to Wanaka.

Naahh...it really isn't that scary, at least not for experienced drivers. Go slow (stop by the lookouts for photos!) and keep a watchful eye on the road. It turned out to be a great scenic drive for us.

2 Thank nlaykhim
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
66 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
“serious high gale force winds in August!”
Reviewed 19 September 2012 via mobile

We drove from Wanaka to Queenstown a few weeks ago not realizing how windy and potentially dangerous the road could be...on a bright sunny dry day! Got out of the car for what we thought would be perfect photo opportunity for gorgeous panorama and the wind was so strong up a small incline over the valley that when my boyfriend tried to take his camera out it nearly blew away!i couldn't stand up top at all it was crazy windy!!!we laughed so much because it was a real surprise and it was strong enough to hold us up. The bf was wearing a windbreaker jacket which very nearly turned into a paragliding jacket. Scary!!!!use caution if you get out of your car on this beautiful but potentially dangerous road!

2 Thank Foodyguru
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kuching, Malaysia
Level Contributor
55 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
“Stunning view”
Reviewed 17 June 2012

This was one of the highlights of our 14 days South-North NZ islands road trip. The view is simply stunning and spectacular, especially when we were at the highest point of it overlooked the view across the Crown range, Cardrona Valley, Queenstown-Frankton and Arrowtown. Best time to go is always the Autumn, when you can the trees with different colors of leaf across the valley. It is just so breathtaking! The zigzag road of the final leg towards Queenstown (right before you reach Arrowtown) is quite challenging, yet is very fun to try.

Visited May 2012
Thank wennitiong
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
“Frightening, but spectacular!”
Reviewed 12 June 2009

Looking at the map, and figuring it was a good shortcut from Wanaka to Arrowtown, a friend and I drove over this road in the dead of winter, August 3, 1989 (20 years ago). My notes read: "The map did not indicate that much of Highway 89 is narrow, winding, unpaved, muddy, slippery, filled with ruts, and incredibly precipitous. ... However, it must be said that the descent from the Crown Range into the alpine valley below provided the most breathtaking late afternoon view I have ever seen. The distant mountains were magnificent, and Arrowtown's lights, and probably those of Queenstown as well, could be seen warm and cozy in the distance." We made it without chains. How, God only knows.

Thank Bunnyfont
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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