Boating with a backpack


Queenstown has another new activity on offer – commercial packrafting tours. 

Operator Expedition X has started offering water and land-based adventures using a light, inflatable boat called a packraft that can be carried into remote areas via backpack. 

Expedition X director Arno Marten says it allows clients to access previously inaccessible spots. 

“The idea is people can walk into some of New Zealand’s most stunning outdoor areas, then inflate their boat, paddle across a lake, stream, or travel back downriver.” 

A packraft, originating from Alaska, weighs about 2.5kg and trips cost $299, including transport, training and a gourmet lunch.