#NZONETIMES is the new go to for all things skydiving and Queenstown related.
From the latest and greatest in Skydiving news to the Must DO Queenstown adventures, NZONE Times has it all and more!
Skydiving Myths and Misconceptions
We’ve heard all the wise tails and friends or friends stories come through our doors, so we have decided to set the record straight once and address the three most popular misconceptions when it comes to Tandem Skydiving.
The Lower the altitude the Less Scary:
This is the most popular rumour out there, and it couldn’t be more wrong, skydiving works in reverse then most other height related adventure activities. The arguably logical concept of the closer to the ground one is the less intimidating, is completely thrown out the window when it comes to Skydiving. We always recommend the higher, the better, as you allow yourself more time to adjust to the sensation of Freefall. The lower the altitude the closer you are to the ground and, the more you recognise it as the approaching land beneath. This is, in contrast, to a higher altitude jump as the further from the ground you are, you allow yourself a greater opportunity to look out not down and fully capture the breathtaking scenery beyond just the floor beneath.
Height doesn’t Matter, a skydive is a skydive:
Following on from above, the answer is yet again 100% YES; height does matter! The higher the altitude, the better the views, the longer the freefall, the more opportunity for photos and the overall better experience. Not to mention the more senior you jump from, the more bragging rights you earn.
Exiting the plane is the worst part:
This couldn't be more inaccurate, the sensation of exiting an aircraft and entering free fall is undoubtedly the most intimidating but the most rewarding and exhilarating part of your skydive. The sensation fo freefalling at speeds upwards of 200kph is an indescribable sensation, one of which overcomes all previous fears and hesitations. We would argue, rather then it being the worst is, in fact, the best, as you exit the plane in the all so flattering banana position you are encapsulated by adrenaline and pure joy.
All in all, whether it's your first time skydiving or your thousandth, we recommend to #EMBRACETHEFEAR, jump at the highest altitude available and just enjoy the process!
First Time Skydiving Top Tips
We've all read the FAQ's for a first time skydiving experience... you know the ones; what do I wear? How long is my freefall? How far in advance do I need to book? Yes, all the nitty-gritty details have been answered, but what can you really expect for your first Skydive? We have three top tips for any first timers out there…
Embrace the Fear:
Our best advice is to allow yourself to be scared, embrace every emotion from the time you check in right through till you land safely on the ground. We understand that jumping out of a perfectly good plane isn’t an everyday activity for most. However, as we say 'Pretend to be brave, even if you aren’t... no one will know the difference'. The hosts and safety officers will make you feel at ease, there charisma yet professionalism is charming and settling. All in all, Embrace the Fear and applaud yourself for doing so; you won't regret it.
Open Your Eyes:
Make sure you keep your eyes wide open, Queenstown has one of the most picturesque landscapes in the world, and what better way to see it then soaring from above. Let yourself enjoy the scenic flight to altitude, as you leave the plane #embracethfear as adrenaline rushes through your veins. Whatever you do, DO NOT close your eyes, keep them wide open and look out not down. Watch in awe as you soar closer to the mountains, and scenes below, this will also ensure your photo and videos are on point too!
Get the Proof:
For most the first time skydiving is the only time, don’t allow yourself to feel the regret of not capturing it all on film. Purchase the photo and video packages, and boast to any and all that you saw Queenstown from above and embraced the fear at NZONE. For best possible photos (and bragging rights) make sure you keep your eyes open, look at the camera and smile large.
The Ultimate Bucket list Item
Bucket lists are unique to each person, recorded in a multitude of ways they outline the specific goals of accomplishments and desires of an individual.
We’ve scoured the internet, articles and bloggers alike and are not surprised to find no good bucket list is complete without an item that involves jumping off, onto or out of something at a great height!
It's no secret that Skydiving covers most of this; therefore we are not surprised to find it heavily weighted as one of the most popular bucket list items. The act of jumping from a plane free falling and parachuting to the ground below is undoubtedly a character-defining experience.
We argue that the only thing to trump a Skydive buck list item is one that not only encompasses the thrill defining sensation fo free falling at speeds of up to 200kph but to do so over one of the most scenic town in the world.
Note it in the history books, as we put forward an NZONE skydive as the Ultimate Bucket list Item, not only is it encompassing the fear embracing, adrenaline pumping sensation of jumping 15,000ft from a perfectly good aircraft. It also provides the most breathtaking, eye bobbling views of the Remarkables mountains, Lake Wakatipu and Cecil Peak.
We encourage any and all, mother, son, sister, uncle, grandparent or friend, whoever and whatever you do; we want you to #EMBRACETHEFEAR and tick off the most rewarding and breathtaking experience that life has to offer!d tick off the most rewarding and breathtaking experience that life has to offer NOW!
Top Five Queenstown Day Walks
Now that you’ve #EMBRACEDTHEFEAR and seen the mountains and surrounds from 15,000ft, it's time to get up close and personal with them. It’s no secret that Queenstown is a hub of activity and beautiful landscapes, for that reason, the Wakatipu basin is a trampers paradise. Queenstown offers something for everyone, from a light stroll to a heart-pumping hike, you’ll be sure to find yourself a match. We've correlated what we believe to be the top 5 Queenstown day hikes for all fitness levels.
The Frankton Arm- 2-3 hour - Easy
This flat walk along the lake is a 2-3 hour return trip from Queenstown town centre to Frankton. Stroll alongside Lake Wakatipu as joggers and bike riders pass you by, this walk really encompasses the vibrancy of Queenstown, activity and breathtaking scenery. The Frankton Arm is the perfect post-dinner stroll as you watch the sunset over the mountains.
Queenstown Gardens- 1 hour - Easy
Queenstown Gardens are tucked away from the central hub of the city yet still extremely accessible. The tranquil 2km return loop homes perfectly manicured gardens, frisbee golf, lawn bowls and rose gardens. The pathed walk is a light stroll bordering Lake Wakatipu and the mountains beyond; the best part is it can be done in the New Zealand uniform of jandals and casual attire.
Queenstown Hill - 2.5 hours return - Medium
Basque in the basket of dreams, and look out over the beautiful city from Queenstown hill, this beginner to intermediate walk is a great way to get your legs moving while ticking off some sights along the way. The uninterrupted view at the peak allows for views over the city below, Wakatipu Basin and Cecil Peak.
Lake Alta- 1.5 Hours - Medium
The Remarkables base building is your start and finishing point for yet another scenic Queenstown hike. You will need a vehicle to get here from the town centre; however, the steady inclined walk leads you to stunning glacial lakes. If you are feeling game and want to up the anti-you can extend your hike further and increase the level of difficulty. This will involve passing the glacial lakes and scrambling from Lake Alta up and across a boulder field. Here you will be rewarded with views of Lake Wakatipu and a distant Queenstown (allow an additional one to two hours for this variant of the hike).
Ben Lomond - 6 hours return - Hard
Ben Lomond isn’t for the faint at heart, this full day walk undoubtedly earns you the best views of Queenstown and beyond. The return journey starts at the bottom of the Skyline Gondola where you will walk the Tiki-Trail to the luge and continue beyond. From here, the steady inclined terrain will soon have you greeted by 360-degree panoramic views of Lake Wakatipu, Cecil Peak, The Remarkable Mountains, and Walter Peak. Don't be fooled; you will need a strong level of fitness, snacks and plenty of water to complete this #mustdonz hike. (Pro tip: Catch the Gondola up the Tiki trail to give yourself a head-start and cut off one hour of the hike time)