Things to Do in Dunedin for Couples
Exploring Dunedin on your honeymoon, anniversary or just to spend some quality time with your loved one? One thing’s for certain, it’s impossible to get bored here. Whether you’re both into art, history, food or nature, Dunedin has it all covered. From unmissable wildlife tours to strolls through gorgeous gardens, there’s an activity to suit any couple’s tastes and budget. Check out some of our top recommendations in this list of romantic activities in Dunedin for couples.
1. Soften Your Heart with Wildlife Viewings on the Otago Peninsula
Don’t miss the opportunity to discover some of the amazing wildlife on the Otago Peninsula. See cute penguins ruffling each others’ feathers at Penguin Place, a conservation area available to visit on tours like Iconic Tours, Back to Nature Tours and Tourworks NZ. Alternatively, see some of the most romantic birds of the South Pacific at the Royal Albatross Centre, where royal albatross return to each year to reunite with their mate-for-life. The Royal Albatross Centre offers tours to observe the world’s largest seabirds close-up, as well as watch little blue penguins waddle to their nests each evening.
2. Walk Hand-in-hand Through the Botanic Garden
For a fun free thing to do in Dunedin, explore the vast and beautiful Dunedin Botanic Garden. Walk hand-in-hand on the numerous walkways, stopping by the bird aviary or to see tropical displays in the winter gardens glasshouse. If you’re feeling active, there’s a one-hour walk to the top of an ancient volcano or simply relax with a romantic picnic by one of the sculptures or flower gardens. See more activities like this in the 17 Free & Cheap Things to Do in Dunedin.
3. Treat Her to Dinner at One of the Fine Dining Restaurants
Want to celebrate a special occasion or simply go somewhere special for “date night”? Check out some of the fine dining options in Dunedin city. Moiety at 42 Queens Gardens humblingly advertises themselves as “definitely not fine dining”, but their impeccably-presented plates of Kiwi-style cuisine beg to differ. Alternatively, feel like you’ve been transported to Scotland at Bracken on Filleul Street, with Scottish heritage decor and farm-to-table cuisine. Finally, Bacchus Wine Bar at The Octagon is an award-winning restaurant serving meals of locally-sourced ingredients, as well as an extensive menu of New Zealand wines and whiskies.
4. Walk to the “Lovers Leap” on the Otago Peninsula
There are many gorgeous walks to enjoy together in and around Dunedin and the Otago Peninsula. An obvious and almost obligatory walk for couples is the Sandymount Track to the “Lovers Leap Natural Bridge”. Starting from the end of Sandymount Road on the Otago Peninsula, the Sandymount Track is a 2.5km walk (1-hour loop) with views of surrounding beaches, rolling hills and coastal cliffs. There’s a short side track to the impressive “Chasm” and a 45-minute one-way track to Sandfly Bay.
5. Learn Something New Together at the Toitu Otago Settlers Museum
Ever wondered how you would both fare as a migrant coming to a new land? Get the imagination going as you explore the Toitu Otago Settlers Museum together. This free museum takes you through the history of the Maori and European settlers of the region, with creative exhibitions like a mock-up of a migration ship and traditional Maori huts. Plus, see how technology has developed of the years with the interesting everyday objects on display. See more attractions like this listed in 11 Things to Do in Dunedin on a Rainy Day.
6. Loosen up on the Speight’s Brewery Tour
Enjoy a drink together in a unique way at the Speight’s Brewery. We recommend the Brewery & Ale House Lunch Tour to get a behind-the-scenes look at the oldest operational brewery in New Zealand and learn how one of New Zealand’s most popular beer brands makes its ales. On the one-hour experience, learn the history of the brewery, see the workings of a brewery, and learn how to pour the perfect pint in The Tasting Room. The tour concludes with a two-course meal at the on-site ale house accompanied by a glass of newly-discovered beer. See more activities like this in 5 Damn Good Brewery Tours in New Zealand.
7. Enjoy Elegant High Tea at Larnach Castle
For a more elegant dining experience, turn to New Zealand’s one and only castle. Perched atop a hill on the Otago Peninsula, Larnach Castle offers high tea with a selection of homemade sandwiches, slices, cream cakes, and a pot of tea to enjoy in the garden or by the fire in the castle’s historic ballroom. Combine the experience with exploring the castle’s beautifully manicured gardens together or perhaps a guided tour of the castle’s lavish interior?
8. Feel Like You’re Travelling Back in Time Together on the Taieri Gorge Railway
[Update: the Taieri Gorge Railway is no longer operating]
Jump on board the Taieri Gorge Railway and pretend you’re lovers from yesteryears! This historic railway experience takes you on a scenic journey through breathtaking river gorge scenery, stopping by historical rural farms, travelling over numerous viaducts and through long tunnels. There’s plenty of photo opportunities along the way, best taken from the open-air carriages, as well as food and drink to enjoy together from the on-board cafe.