With the designation as a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Creative City of Literature, Dunedin officially joined the esteemed league of first-class cities along with Dublin, Edinburgh, Melbourne, Norwich, Krakow, Reykjavík and Iowa City, in December of 2014.
1. Weekly Events
Given the city renown for literary contributions steeped in the city’s heritage, literary events support a flourishing community bustling with playwrights, lyricists, and writers.
Dunedin takes pride in its rich history while at the same time, showcasing it’s active and lively present-day city life.
2. Live Music
Choirs play an important part in Dunedin’s celebrations and cultural and commemorative events and many call Dunedin home. Many performances for historical events and occasions and annual concerts of cultural significance are performed in the city’s historical Churches, Chapels, Cathedrals and Performing Arts Center.
Orchestras, bands, and ensembles play an integral part of any production and Dunedin is home to several. The Southern Sinfonia, The Rare Byrds, The Collegiate Orchestra, the Dunedin Youth Orchestra, St. Kilda Brass, Kaikorai Brass, Mosgiel Brass, The Otago Symphonic Band and City of Dunedin Pipe Band all play key roles in the city’s musical performances.
Dunedin has strong roots in the popular music scene as well. Some music groups that credit their beginnings in Dunedin went on to achieve national and international acclaim.
3. Sport Matches
From the music scene to the playing field, court or ring, Dunedin is where you can enjoy a rousing match of Rugby, Football, Cricket, Ice Hockey, Netball, or Basketball.
With every game or activity, there’s a venue and Dunedin has many to choose from. Between ice stadiums, raceways, grounds, parks, and pools there is plenty to explore on your visit.
Dunedin is host to large and small theatrical companies as well. With its large venue, the Fortune Theatre currently holds the title of the southernmost professional theatre company in the world. There is the Regent Theatre located in the Octagon and smaller venues that include the Playhouse, Mayfair and Globe Theatres.
5. Public Art Galleries
Visual arts enthusiasts will be thrilled as they discover Dunedin’s art galleries such as the Dunedin Public Art Gallery, as well as more than a dozen different other galleries for dealers and experimental art.
Dunedin praises their celebrated artists, Grahame Sydney, Jeffrey Harris, Frances Hodgkins and Ralph Hotere.
6. Natural Landscape
If the great outdoors is more to your liking, Dunedin’s shoreline is just one of the many places to enjoy some of the most beautiful coastal beaches and scenery in New Zealand. Most have easy access, have surf patrols on duty and are just minutes from town. If fishing is on the agenda, Salmon, Trout and Fly fishing are some of the best in Dunedin’s reservoirs, harbors and lagoons or if you prefer, charter a vessel to take you deep sea fishing offshore for a catch of Blue Cod.
In addition to the rich history, contemporary art scene, cultural heritage, native wildlife and glorious beaches Dunedin is a city that cultivates innovation and nurtures creativity. Dunedin is about choosing a vibrant lifestyle and living it.
7. Dunedin Railway Station
The Dunedin Train station is one of the oldest and also the most photographed building in the Southern Hemisphere. It is a natural piece of architecture with the beautiful garden in the front. The station still open to the public and also in service. The station was constructed in 1906 and is a major tourist hotspot. It is located only 2 minutes from the Octagon.
8. Otago Peninsula
Located in the Eastern most part of the City, it is volcanic in origin. It has a finger like structure, where the inner part is eroded landmass. It offers beautiful scenery of the surrounding areas, as well as the ocean. It is home to Northern Royal Albatross and Yellow Eyed Penguins. The Larnach castle is a beautiful castle located in the heart of Otago Peninsula. It has a rich history and beautiful garden.
9. Cadbury World
Curious to know how Cadbury makes their delicious chocolates? The Cadbury World is a self-guided exhibition run by Cadbury itself. Opened in 2003, it is also the largest factory in the city. It features three different tours, the factory tour, the shortened tour and the center tour. The tour includes the world’s largest chocolate waterfall. Remember to brush your teeth after eating chocolates. There are a number of dentists in Dunedin. For a guide on how to pick the best dental care, click here.
10. Otago Museum
Located right next to The University of Otago. Built in 1868, It is one of the oldest museums in New Zealand. They have the largest collection in New Zealand and it is the biggest attraction in the city with almost 500,000 visitors every year from around the world. The museum features exhibitions in subjects such as science, humanities, dinosaurs and more.
11. Steepest Street in the World (bonus)
Dunedin is a mountainous city, and it is surrounded by hills. Thus it is no surprise that it is home to one of the steepest streets in the world. Almost impossible to drive, many walks up the hill and many residents live up there. The street is called Baldwin Street.