Queenstown is a small town in Otago, the southeast of South Island, New Zealand, beside the famous beautiful lake shore Wakatipu. It is well-known for the name “Town of Queens”, but it attracts tourist above all others by adventure games such as bungee-jumping, jet boating, snowboarding, water rafting.
The first group came to Queenstown in the late 1860s; it was the first time gold was discovered in Shotover river. When the gold resources exhausted, people decided to stay here for the beauty of nature, mountain and forest instead of leaving.
In the early 20th century, pretty paths opened the door for tourism. In the summer months, tourist flocks here to walk in paths which are as fine as in watercolor painting. But when winter comes, located people are at a standstill, they are just resigned waiting for long interminable days to elapse.
Until 1947, a pioneer in the field of New Zealand tourism, Henry Wigley decided to open a skiing center called Coronet Peak Ski Resort in order to develop this location as a year-round recreational center. Skiing also came out into the world at that time.
Queenstown also is the first places where jet boating was invented in 1960 by a farmer Bill Hamilton. He thought that moving by boat helps tourist can contemplate the quaint beauty of ravines and Shotover River.
When jet boating reached particular successes, people developed moving by raft (water rafting), and it brought about Kon TiKi Raft together. Two rivers Shotover and Kawaru became ideal attractive destination for the excitement of tourists by the drift of boat. After that, this activity was extended very quickly; many new operators appeared to satisfy the rising demand highly of travelers.
However, a name “Capital of Adventure Games” only entered society officially in 1988 after two young businessmen who are AJ Hackett and Henry Van Asch came to the town to develop the first bungee-jumping in the world. From the inspiration of located tribe Vanuatu, people who use jungle creeper to move. Both of them had worked together in university for 2 years in order to develop a rubber band fixed to ankles, guarantee safety when people play bungee-jumping.
Then, AJ Hackett won recognition of the world finally when he did a reckless jumping from Eiffel towel’s top. Immediately, tourist showed their eagerness for this exciting adventure game. They began coming to Kawarau Bridge which is separated 43 m from the water surface. It is where they chose to be a place to play bungee-jumping. Bungee became a phenomenon not only in Queenstown but also in many other places in the entire world. An estimated 350.000 tourists went to Queenstown to play bungee-jumping from the first time playing in 1988.
Next, in 1990, a new sport-paragliding- came out with a pioneer Bruce Grant. This activity satisfied tourists by their joy for flying in the blue sky and see wonderful sight-seeing from above.
Today, tourists come to Queenstown also have the opportunity to enjoy many other interesting games such as mountain bike, zip-lining, zorbing, snowboarding or skydiving.