40 Things to Do in Dunedin, New Zealand

Forget Tripadvisor.

I couldn’t return to my home town for a quick visit (or as quick as a visit can be when you’re traveling 12,000 miles) and not pay at least some blog-worthy tribute to this sentimental city. Returning felt a bit like being embraced by a warm hug, and it was certainly nostalgic to revisit some of my old haunts.

Although you’ll find some token touristic attractions here, you will also find a few hidden gems that only Dunedin locals know about. It took a lot for me not to comprise this list solely of food ideas, so know that the ones I have included are – in my humble opinion – on a level above the rest.

So, in no particular order, here are 40 things to do in this little Scottish settlement by the name of Dunedin…

  1. Follow the Dunedin street art trail
  2. Catch a wave in the St. Clair surf
  3. Take a step back in time at Olveston Historic Home
  4. Sip on a Pic’s Poles at Starfish Café
  5. Play disc golf at Chingford Park
  6. Eat fish and chips at the Signal Hill Lookout
  7. Dine on authentic Italian cuisine at the Esplanade
  8. Embrace Dunedin’s multi-cultural heritage at the Chinese Gardens
  9. Take a dip at St. Kilda Beach
  10. Start your weekend off the right way with an order from the Friday Shop
  11. Catch some rays at the St. Clair Hot Salt Water Pool
  12. Enjoy a cheese platter from Carey’s Bay Historic Hotel
  13. Burn some calories by walking up Jacob’s Ladder
  14. Attend a public lecture at the University of Otago
  15. Order an iced coffee at Kiki Beware
  16. Take in some New Zealand landscape at Lover’s Leap
  17. Feed the ducks at the Dunedin Botanic Gardens
  18. Eat an ice cream from Rob Roy Dairy on the museum lawn
  19. Catch a butterfly at the Tropical Forest
  20. Enjoy a lazy Sunday brunch at Nectar Espresso Bar and Café
  21. Enter the pub quiz at the Dog with Two Tails
  22. Stock up on some fresh seasonal produce at the Otago Farmer’s Market
  23. Take a selfie at the Railway Station
  24. Jump from the rocks at Outram Glen
  25. Channel your healthier side at the Good Earth organic café
  26. Cheer for your favourite team at Forsyth Barr Stadium
  27. Visit the Albatross Colony on the Otago Peninsula
  28. Melt at the sight of the puppies at the Nichol’s Pet Warehouse
  29. Scale the sand dunes of Tomahawk Beach (and mind the sea lions!)
  30. See a real Egyptian mummy at the Otago Museum
  31. Admire the interior architecture at Rialto Cinema
  32. Order the pancake of the month at Capers
  33. Brew a pint at Speight’s Brewery
  34. Expand your literary boundaries at the University Book Shop
  35. Inject a doughnut at Nova
  36. Challenge yourself to climbing the steepest street in the world
  37. Start the day with Eggs Benedict at Ironic Café and Bar
  38. Take in the secret ocean views at Second Beach
  39. Play aristocrats at Larnach Castle
  40. Explore the industrial area with a pit stop at Vogel St. Kitchen

Are you a local who wants to to add something to the list? Let’s connect – email me at thegingerpassports@gmail.com or message me over Facebook or Twitter and I’ll hop to it.

Alternatively, if you’re about to touch down in Dunedin, be sure to watch my vlog (and laugh at slow motion footage of me failing to blow a dandelion).

Here are also some of my Dunedin highlights fresh from the blog:

📚 The Local’s Guide to Dunedin

🌊 The Beach Review #1: St. Kilda

⛰ Postcards from Lover’s Leap

🐝 Flight of the Butterflies: Otago Museum’s Tropical Forest

and last but not least, my own personal favourite…

☕ Starfish Café: Your Sunday Morning Fix

The surfing and farmer’s market photographs are courtesy of Unsplash. The photograph of Kiki Beware was taken by Naomi Haussmann for Neat Places, and the photograph of Larnach Castle was sourced from Tripadvisor.

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