This city is set up for students. With a large proportion of the population under 25, Dunedin offers everything a student needs and its natural features include everything an adventurous student wants.
Studying in Dunedin
Dunedin city is perfectly positioned to offer the best in culture and student life as well as being an exciting adventure sport destination. There is no better place to start your new adventurous career.
Dunedin is regarded as the student capital of New Zealand. The population is younger than most other cities due to the large tertiary education sector and people aged between 15 and 24 make up approximately 22% of the city's residential population. The rent is cheap, it is easy to get around and the nightlife is lively. Students shape this city and in turn it shapes them.
With numerous ski resorts like Remarkables, Coronet Peak, Treble Cone, Cardrona & Snow Park all within 3 hours drive of Dunedin, a weekend on the slopes requires minimal effort. Skiers and snowboarders of all abilities will love being able to ski and board at a different resort every time they head for the mountains. From family friendly wide open beginner trails to world class pipes & black diamond runs that will leave your heart racing, there is a field for everyone.
Long Beach and the surrounding areas are a climber’s paradise and in the past was referred to as the climbing capital of New Zealand. With its close location to Dunedin’s city centre and being protected from the southerly, Long Beach is a great playground for the climbing enthusiast.
Dunedin is famous for being one of the most consistent surf spots in the country. The coastline twists and turns so there is always somewhere which has just the right wind and swell on any given day. The peninsula extends into the Pacific Ocean and is peppered with respected surf beaches whose names are as rugged as the shoreline - Blackhead, Aramoana and Tomahawk to name but a few. Big waves, small waves, beach breaks and point breaks - whatever you are looking for, you will find it in Dunedin.
Dunedin is a mountain biker’s playground and single track trails can be found in every direction. The summer climate is perfect for mountain biking expeditions, with mild temperatures and a late setting sun. From Swampy Summit and Bethune’s Gully, to the Redwoods and Snakes and Ladders, Dunedin has a well established mountain biking scene. Cyclists gather in the Octagon after work to make the most of the trails in summer, many of them sporting headlights on their helmets so they can continue to ride once the sun has set. Trails are well suited to most abilities and while there are lots of hills to climb, the rider is rewarded with some fantastic downhill. Numerous bike shops offer bike hire and bike touring packages. New Zealand has some of the most breathtaking scenery in the world and Lonely Planet declares Otago’s Dunedin Peninsula to be one of the world’s best cycling destinations. Cycling in Dunedin also allows you to experience a close proximity to region's wildlife and Lonely Planet applauds the Peninsula for its mix of “scenery and sweat.” On a two to three hour ride, a cyclist on a round trip from the city has the opportunity to encounter albatross, penguins and fur seals in their natural environments.
Red stags, fallow bucks, the massive Fiordland wapiti, chamois, wild boar, wild goat and wild ram are some of the animals you can hunt in the Otago and Southland regions. Dunedin offers challenging and rewarding trophy and meat hunts in fantastic hunting terrains. Game bird hunting is one of the great social recreational sports in New Zealand and Otago is a gamebird hunter’s paradise. The region provides hunters with a wide variety of different experiences, from decoying mobs of mallards over coastal wetlands, to flushing quail in high country scrubland and stalking Canada geese on mountain riverbeds.
Dunedin caters for every type of angler! Otago is a hidden gem of international fly-fishing travel and offers a wide range of marvellous waterways providing a huge variety of opportunities. Big salmon have been caught on the wharves in Otago Harbour and plenty have been caught trolling, both within the harbour and outside the entrance off Taiaroa Head. For those without boats, the inner harbour and Port Chalmers are very popular with anglers fishing with baited hooks. Dunedin is also a sea fisherman's dream! There are plenty of blue cod, greenbone, trumpeter and moki and schools of groper cruise the shallower waters – with some real beauties landed in the deep.
From Carousel, a sophisticated lounge bar, to the eclectic Irish Albar (with live Irish music every Tuesday night), Dunedin’s nightlife is culturally rich and vibrant. Alibi Bar and Restaurant regularly hosts salsa dancing and Wine and Food Tasting evenings and The Terrace Sports bar in the Octagon screens all major sporting events on the largest big screen television in the city. A huge live music scene sees local musicians and international acts alike belting out tunes on any given night around the city.
Art and Culture
Art and Culture
No matter what the weather, Dunedin has something for everyone even on the rainiest of days. The majestic Regent Theatre offers live music, theatre, dance and film, the Hocken Collection at the University of Otago Library collects widely in relation to the history and culture of New Zealand, the Pacific and Antarctica. The Otago Early Settlers Musem, Toitu, traces the lives of our early settlers - including the indigenous Maori, Europeon and the early Chinese and provides insight into their technological innovation, art, fashion, domestic life and travel. You can take a tour of the Cadbury factory or Speights Brewery. Trust us when we say that you will never be bored!
Due to the proximity to the Otago Peninsula, Dunedin lays claim to being New Zealand’s eco-tourism capital. The Otago Peninsula is internationally renowned for its abundance of incredible sub-Antarctic wildlife. Seals and sea lions come ashore to lie on the rocks of the Peninsula, the Royal Albatross has established its only land-based breeding colony in the world at Taiaroa Head and the yellow-eyed penguin takes shelter among the sand dunes on the coasts of Dunedin. Fabulously quirky British botanist and BBC personality Sir David Bellamy, commented in a speech in 2000 at the New Zealand International Festival of Science, held biennially in the city - “in my opinion, the Otago Peninsula is the finest example of eco-tourism in the world”.
One of Dunedin’s main culinary attractions is the Otago Farmer’s Market which is held every Saturday at the Railway Station. The Railway Station itself is an architectural icon and heritage site. The market sells fresh garden produce along with plants, artisan breads, organic meat and coffee. Musicians entertain the crowd as they eat hot bacon butties and butterscotch crepes. An abundance of international restaurants are dotted around the city in easy walking distance from the Octagon to keep everyone’s tastebuds happy.
Study in the Student Capital of New Zealand!
Dunedin Dive Sites offer a huge variety for all experience levels
Explore our interactive map of the area, download info sheets and advice about diving in and around Otago.
Chris Garroway - Dive Instructor
"I've dived with Manta Rays nearly every day for the past 2 and a half years. In over 1200 dives I've seen Tiger Sharks, Hammerheads, hundreds of turtles...."
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Dive Otago is a Dive Centre in Dunedin, New Zealand. Find out more about what we do and who we are.