More than a whiff of Scottish heritage hangs in the cool Dunedin air, so it's not surprising that many of the things to do in Dunedin have a Scottish flavour. Dunedin's hilly harbour side terrain is filled with streets and suburbs that mirror places in Scotland. Dunedin's grand Victorian and Edwardian architecture are some of the most amazing landmarks in New Zealand. It completes the picture to make it easy to think of Dunedin as a wee patch of Scotland in the South Pacific and a unique place to include when planning a New Zealand itinerary.
VISIT LARNACH CASTLE. Larnach Castle is only a 20-minute drive from Dunedin but when it was built in 1871, it was in a remote and isolated spot. These days Larnach Castle is a key attraction in Dunedin. The gardens are rated by the New Zealand Gardens Trust as a Garden of International Significance and the original home is a museum with rooms furnished with period furniture from Larnach's era.
ADMIRE DUNEDIN'S ARCHITECTURE. Dunedin is a handsome city with steepled churches and grand architecture. Its distinctive Scottish flavour makes it a unique place to put on a New Zealand South Island itinerary. The city's most ornate building is the Flemish Renaissance railway station, which has a mosaic floor of almost 750,000 Royal Doulton porcelain tiles. The 1km long platform is the longest in New Zealand and is used each year as a catwalk for the South Island's main fashion show!
VISIT THE OTAGO SETTLER'S MUSEUM. The Otago Settlers Museum tells the story of the people who formed the backbone of the city, from the Maori to the early Scottish settlers through to the first Chinese who came to work the Otago Goldfields in 1865. Inside the museum, there's a recreation of the steerage quarters of an immigrant ship bound for Otago and an interactive exhibit that depicts the epic voyages faced by the early Scots.
HEAD TO THE BEACH. Dunedin has a stunning coastline and beaches such as Tunnel Beach, Brighton Beach, Long Beach and St Clair Beach are have mystical energy that draws you to the ocean.
GO ON A TRAIN RIDE. Most visitors to Dunedin will take the time to visit the Dunedin Railway Station, which is a handsome piece of architecture and a reminder of the city’s history
While at the railway station, board the Taieri Gorge Railway for an excursion to the Dunedin hinterlands or the Waitati Seasider for a train ride to the coast. The train rides are a relaxing way to see the beautiful countryside around Dunedin.