Heritage and wildlife capital.

As New Zealand’s oldest city, Dunedin is full of character and charm. Come here to enjoy history, nature and food.

Small but beautifully formed, Dunedin has 170 years of history that you can experience with castle visits, brewery tours, vintage railway trips and architectural walks around the CBD. And the city is just minutes from the natural wonderland of Otago Peninsula, which is home to colonies of fur seals, albatrosses and rare yellow-eyed penguins. What’s more, the hills and beaches close to Dunedin are perfect for scenic walks.


[bs-quote quote=”High on Otago Peninsula is Larnach Castle, a Gothic Revival residence built in the 1870s. It’s a true castle, complete with ghosts.” style=”style-16″ align=”center”][/bs-quote]

Where the wild things are

Extraordinary rare marine mammals and seabirds live close to downtown Dunedin, including royal albatrosses, yellow-eyed penguins, little blue penguins, New Zealand fur seals and sea lions.

The best place to see these amazing creatures is at the end of Otago Peninsula, a wonderland of coastal scenery and wildlife habitats. The road along the peninsula is punctuated by pretty bays, historic villages, farmland, wild surf beaches and sea cliffs.

Yellow-eyed penguin
Yellow-eyed penguin

Right at the tip of Otago Peninsula is the Royal Albatross Centre, where you can visit the world’s only mainland breeding colony of royal albatross. Nearby is the Penguin Place, a private conservation reserve for yellow-eyed penguins (Maori name hoiho). You can also see little blue penguins, fur seals and sea lions with a local tour operator, such as Nature’s Wonders or Monarch Cruises, who will know the best locations for viewing.

Phenomenal historic architecture


Many of Dunedin’s most impressive buildings were built in the gold rush days, when cost was no object. As a result, the city has the best collection of ornate Victorian and Edwardian buildings in the southern hemisphere.

Opened in 1906 and described as an experimental collaboration of Classical and Neo-Gothic architectural styles, Dunedin Railway Station is outrageously beautiful. The combination of dark basalt and white limestone make it look like the world’s biggest gingerbread house.

Dunedin Railway Station
Dunedin Railway Station

High on Otago Peninsula is Larnach Castle, a Gothic Revival residence that’s often called the only true castle in New Zealand. Built in the 1870s, it took 200 workmen more than three years to construct. The castle is believed to have two ghosts. Another stately home to visit is Olveston, which provides an intimate glimpse of upper class lifestyle from the early 1900s.

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