Where to see New Zealand’s ‘Instagram tree’ and more in Wanaka, Otago

Dec 28, 2016

Once a stopover en route to nearby tourist hotspot Queenstown, Wanaka is now an in-crowd destination. The lakeside town (above) offers idiosyncratic delights and activities that are, as yet, unspoiled by masses of travellers.


That Wanaka Tree


The tree started life as a fence post, and now it’s one of the most photographed trees in New Zealand. A gnarled willow (above) marooned in the water against a mountainous backdrop, it has even earned its own Instagram tag: #thatwanakatree.

Tapley Paddock, 40-44 Wanaka-Mount Aspiring Road

Rubys Cinema & bar


On the outskirts of town, this red-velvet cinema (above) evokes the heyday of Hollywood, when it was all about sophistication and strong cocktails. See arthouse movies and new releases from the serviced comfort of a reclining armchair.


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Transport & Toy Museum

Transport and Toy Museum

There’s something here for everyone: from scooters to sewing machines; Barbie dolls to a bi-plane. Behind the collection (above) – which includes the largest number of toys on public display in New Zealand – is owner Gerald Rhodes, who amassed all 50,000 items over 50 years.