Deciding between Coronet Peak and The Remarkables for your ski adventure in New Zealand can be a delightful dilemma. Both resorts are nestled in the Southern Alps near Queenstown, each offering a distinct skiing experience. 

Coronet Peak, the elder of the two, entices with its range of well-groomed trails, night skiing, and proximity to Queenstown. It is renowned for its long blue runs and offers a more compact ski area, ideal for those looking to maximise their time on the slopes.

In contrast, The Remarkables, set in a dramatic mountain range that carries the same name, presents a more relaxed atmosphere with sunny, north-facing slopes. It’s a haven for beginners, intermediate skiers, and families, with a good mix of green and blue runs and a selection of challenging black runs for the more adventurous. The Remarkables’ diverse terrain, alongside freestyle areas and off-piste opportunities, caters to a wide array of skill levels and preferences.

  • Coronet Peak is well-suited for avid skiers seeking groomed trails and night skiing.
  • The Remarkables offers a friendly environment with varied terrain for all abilities.
  • Both provide unique experiences reflecting the diverse offerings of Queenstown ski fields.

Wherever you choose to ski, enjoy more time on the slopes and less time queuing for ski rental in Queenstown with Snopro’s unique delivery and custom fitting service.

Comparing Coronet Peak and The Remarkables

Alright, let’s kick back and chat about two of Queenstown’s most talked-about ski resorts: Coronet Peak and The Remarkables. It’s like choosing between two epic parties – both are awesome, but each has its own flavour.

cornet peak and remarkables

Starting with Coronet Peak. Just a stone’s throw from Queenstown, Coronet Peak is the go-to for those who want to hit the slopes without a long commute. The drive up is a breeze, and before you know it, you’re strapping on your boots and eyeing the chairlift.

Coronet’s got a rep for being super accessible, and that’s not just about its location. The mountain serves up a tasty platter of runs for all skill levels. You’ve got your beginner slopes where newbies can find their snow legs, intermediates can cruise, and the pros can get their adrenaline fix. With a vertical drop of 420 meters and 280 hectares of terrain, there’s enough space to carve up some fresh tracks without playing bumper skis with everyone.

Coronet Peak Ski Resort

But here’s where Coronet Peak turns up the cool factor – night skiing. Imagine gliding down the mountain with the stars overhead and the lights of Queenstown twinkling in the distance. It’s like the mountain throws its own disco, and you’re invited every Wednesday and Friday evening.

Now, on to The Remarkables. This place is like the adventurous cousin with a wild and name that sets some high expectations – which it totally lives up to, by the way. Perched about 45 minutes from Queenstown, The Remarkables is that friend who’s always up for a good time, no matter what.

The Remarkables ski resort

The Remarkables is larger than Coronet Peak, with 385 hectares of terrain, plus it’s got heart and some wicked trails. The north-facing slopes catch the sun, giving you those warm, sunny days that make you want to ditch the jacket and rock the spring skiing look. With a base elevation of 1,586 meters and a summit of 1,943 meters, the views are, well, remarkable. And the vertical drop of 357 meters is nothing to scoff at – it’s enough to get your heart racing on the way down.

Every year improvements and expansion is arriving at ‘Remarks’ most recently with the Shadow Basin chairlift for the 2024 ski season which adds 50% extra skiable terrain in this zone! That means faster, longer laps for everybody! Yehaw!

Location and Access

driving to coronet peak

Coronet Peak is conveniently located about 20 minutes from Queenstown, making it highly accessible if you’re staying in the town centre. Your journey to the slopes is scenic and relatively straight-forward.

The Remarkables, sits 45 minutes from Queenstown and offers spectacular views along the way. Although it requires a longer drive, the extraordinary landscape is well worth the extra time.

Ski Season and Weather Conditions

The ski season at both Coronet Peak and The Remarkables generally starts in mid-June and can last until early October. Weather conditions can alter this, and it’s wise to check the weather forecast before planning your trip.

  • Coronet Peak is a lower altitude so snow quality can suffer but half the drive time from Queenstown. Plus it offers night skiing, giving you a unique experience under the stars when conditions permit.
  • The Remarkables tends to have a more consistent snowfall, thanks to its higher elevation and location, which might extend the skiing opportunities later into the season.

Slope Difficulty Levels

Coronet peak snowboarder

Both resorts are managed by NZSki, providing a variety of terrains catering to all skill levels, from beginner to advanced.

Coronet Peak is celebrated for its long blue runs which are ideal for intermediate skiers, along with a selection of reds (advanced intermediate). It does offer beginner runs, but is generally preferred by those with a bit of skiing experience.

The Remarkables has a more balanced mixture, with ample green runs perfect for beginners and black runs for the more advanced skiers seeking a challenge. Adding to this, prepare for thrills and spills in the dedicated terrain park which offers lines of all experience levels.

When choosing between these two resorts, consider whether you prefer readily accessible ski options at Coronet Peak, or you’re up for the extra drive to The Remarkables for a broader range of beginner to advanced slopes and more reliable snow quality. Each has its unique character and offerings, ensuring an unforgettable skiing experience.

Unique Features and Activities

When choosing between Coronet Peak and The Remarkables for your skiing holiday, consider the unique features and activities each has to offer. These distinctions can help tailor your ski experience to match your expectations and abilities.

Night Skiing Opportunities

Coronet Peak at sunset with a cloud inversion

Coronet Peak stands out with its night skiing activities, allowing you to extend your time on the slopes under the stars. The resort offers night skiing on Wednesdays and Fridays, making it an exceptional choice for maximising your ski day.

Family and Children’s Facilities

For families, The Remarkables offers a friendly atmosphere with facilities that cater to children and beginners. With dedicated magic carpets and conveyor lifts, the area is designed to ease the learning process. The resort’s emphasis on enjoyable and safe skiing for children ensures a stress-free experience for the whole family during the school holidays. Similar facilities are offered at Coronet Peak, although a little more limited.

Off-Piste and Advanced Skier Adventures

Both Coronet Peak and The Remarkables offer exciting terrain for advanced skiers looking for adventure off the beaten path. However, The Remarkables is particularly known for its added off-piste opportunities and freestyle areas. With its terrain park developed for those who love thrills, you’re sure to find some heart-pumping action. Advanced skiers can explore various challenging routes and test their skills to the fullest.

Amenities and Guest Services

When planning your skiing adventure to either Coronet Peak or The Remarkables, you’ll find an array of amenities and services designed to enhance your experience on the mountain. Both offer a variety of options for on-mountain accommodation and dining, equipment rentals, ski lessons, and additional guest facilities to ensure your visit is comfortable and enjoyable.

On-Mountain Accommodation and Dining

There’s no on-mountain accommodation available at either ski area, but you can grab a bite at a selection of cafes and restaurants in the base buildings. Both Coronet Peak and The Remarkables offer similar dining options, with cafes serving hot and cold tasty treats to refuel you during the day.

Rental and Instruction Information

Both resorts provide comprehensive rental services. You can hire a range of equipment, from skis to snowboards, along with necessary accessories like helmets. During busy week and first thing in the morning, queues can be extensive, even if you book before hand. BUT you can skip the long wait with Snopro’s ski rental delivery service which operates across Queenstown.

Ski lessons are available for all levels, with friendly and qualified instructors to guide you, whether you’re a beginner or looking to improve your skills.

Guest Facilities and Support

Your comfort is a priority at both resorts, where you’ll find well-equipped base buildings complete with guest services to answer any questions or provide assistance. Lockers for personal items are available, and staff are always on hand to offer tips and help maximise your time on the slopes.

  • Lockers: Secure storage for your gear and belongings.
  • Guest Services: Friendly staff to assist with pass purchases, provide resort information, and more.
  • Base Building Amenities: Rest areas, restrooms, and additional facilities for your convenience.
  • Parking: Car parking is available just a short walk or free bus ride from the base building.

Lift Systems and Mountain Access

When choosing between Coronet Peak and The Remarkables, you’ll find distinctive lift systems and accessibility features that could influence your mountain experience.

Types of Lifts and Their Efficiency

Coronet Peak boasts a modern lift system, including a high-speed six-seater chairlift that significantly reduces wait times. Additionally, there are quad chairs and conveyor lifts for beginners. The Remarkables, on the other hand, offers a mix of lifts, with the comfortable curved six-seater chairlift enhancing your ride up the mountain. Their quad chairs and conveyors are particularly friendly for novices, ensuring smooth access across the slopes.

Ease of Access and Shuttle Services

To reach Coronet Peak, you have the option to drive, which takes about 20 minutes from Queenstown, or you can take advantage of the regular shuttle services. The Remarkables is a bit further, with a 40-minute drive on an unsealed and winding alpine road, but the journey is often considered part of the adventure. For both mountains, shuttle services are a convenient choice if you prefer not to drive. Be aware, if it is snowing you are likely to require snow chains on the mountain roads if you are self-driving to the ski field.

Après-Ski and Local Attractions

After an exhilarating day on the slopes at Coronet Peak or The Remarkables, you’ll discover that Queenstown offers a delightful array of après-ski activities and attractions. Whether you’re looking to unwind with local food and wine or indulge in the scenic splendour of Central Otago, there’s plenty to keep you entertained.

The Remarkables or Coronet Peak Final Thoughts

In conclusion, the choice between Coronet Peak and The Remarkables is a personal one, dependent on what you value most in your ski holiday. Coronet Peak offers the convenience of proximity to Queenstown, night skiing, and a range of groomed trails that intermediate skiers will particularly enjoy. The Remarkables, with its more reliable snow due to higher elevation, provides a great environment for families and beginners, as well as challenging terrain for those seeking an adventure.

Both resorts boast efficient lift systems, comprehensive amenities, and the breathtaking scenery for which Queenstown is famous. Whether you’re after the thrill of night skiing and well-groomed runs at Coronet Peak or the varied terrain and family-friendly atmosphere of The Remarkables, your trip to either will be an unforgettable experience.

Remember, with Snopro’s unique ski rental delivery and custom fitting service, you can avoid the queues and spend more time enjoying the fantastic mountains at either resort. Ultimately, whether you choose the convenience and diverse runs of Coronet Peak or the expansive and beginner-friendly slopes of The Remarkables, you’re sure to have a fantastic time on the mountains near Queenstown.

[avatar] Author: Eliot Prince