Photo By Peter Watts
Lake Wanaka

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Virtual tour panorama taken part way up the eastern side of Lake Wanaka on the road to Makarora. The road travels first up Lake Hawea before traversing a thin land ridge separating the two. At various points there are paths down to the lake edge. This picture shows a man fishing from the lakeside in late afternoon with the mountains as a backdrop.


Lake Wanaka - Wanaka visitor guide showing a virtual tour of 'Lake Wanaka' linked to an interactive map with local and travel information. 360° panoramas from Otago.

Lake Wanaka is the fourth largest lake in New Zealand. The lake lies at an altitude of 300m in Central Otago, and is part of the Queenstown-Lakes District. It is 42km long, stretching from Wanaka in the south to Makarora in the north. Filling a U-shaped valley created by a glacier during a past ice age, Lake Wanaka is 300m deep in places and fed by the Makarora River. At the southern end the lake drains into the Clutha River. At the widest point, near Wanaka, the lake is 10km across. On the western side are mountains that rise up to 2000m high, forming part of the Mount Aspiring National Park.

Lake Wanaka lies in a parallel valley to Lake Hawea, which was also formed by glaciation. Most of the time the two lakes are separated by mountain ridge by about 8km. However, one arm of the lake Hawea stretches westwards towards it's partner, stopping only 1000m short at a land ridge known as The Neck. These lakes provide excellent boating, fishing, waterskiing and other watersports. The surrounding hills are popular for hiking and tramping. There are a couple of campsites along the lakes, otherwise accommodation can be found in the nearby towns like Lake Hawea Settlement and Wanaka.

Lake Wanaka and Lake Hawea are both thought to be named after local Maori tribes. These natural lakes are very different to Lake Dunstan, which is man made, formed by the Clyde Dam.


Road: From Wanaka take the 6 Highway north up along Lake Hawea, and past The Neck. This parking point is about 45km from Wanaka. Wanaka is about 68km north of Queenstown on the 6 Highway.
Flight: Wanaka Airport with daily flights to Christchurch

Recent Local Panoramas

Makarora Hills and Valley
Makarora Hills and Valley / Wanaka
River Walk at Pleasant Flat near Haast Pass
River Walk at Pleasant Flat near Haast Pass / Haast
Pleasant Flat near Haast Pass in Sun
Pleasant Flat near Haast Pass in Sun / Haast
Pleasant Flat Near Haast Pass Shrouded in Cloud
Pleasant Flat Near Haast Pass Shrouded in Cloud / Haast
Mountains Around Lake Hawea
Mountains Around Lake Hawea / Wanaka
Southern End of Lake Hawea
Southern End of Lake Hawea / Wanaka
Hawea Village
Hawea Village / Wanaka
Thunder Creek Falls
Thunder Creek Falls / Haast


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