Twizel New Zealand information. Twizel accommodation and hotel booking, travel, tours, activities and things to do. Events, maps and news for Twizel NZ.
South Island map showing Twizel


Once land reserved for farming sheep, Twizel was established as the base for the Upper Waitaki Power Development. The scheme was the largest hydro project ever undertaken in New Zealand, started in 1968 and completed 18 years later.

Today Twizel is a service and tourist town with a residential population of approximately 1200 people. Popular as a holiday town, in summer the population more than trebles. It’s the closest town to Aoraki/Mt Cook and the Tasman Glacier, and is an excellent cost effective alternative to staying in the Mount Cook Village. Many of the houses that once serviced the hydroelectric development are now holiday homes. A 15 minute drive will take you down to Lake Ruataniwha, an artificial lake formed as part of the Upper Waitaki Scheme.

Penstock and Heavy Machinery for Dam Construction 1968 Prefabricated House

Twizel's layout is based on a Scandinavian concept where the shopping and sporting facilities are centrally located with green areas linking streets, providing safe and quick pedestrian walkways to the town centre. Most of the houses were prefabricated and the whole town was erected very quickly. A unique quirk to the town’s residences is the prominence of the meter box, seen at the very centre of houses’ street facing wall, displaying very clearly the township’s electrical establishment.

At the entrance to the town there is a monument to the town’s hydroelectric heritage with a section of Penstock (a piece of pipe that delivers water to dam turbines) and a few examples of the heavy machinery used in the construction of the dams and channels in the basin.

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Featured Twizel Events

Twizel Salmon & Wine Festival Mt Cook Astro Masterclass Workshop - 4 Days South of France - Fiona Pears and Connor Hartley-Hall Mt Cook Astro Masterclass Workshop - 4 Days
Twizel Salmon & Wine Festival
Rowing Complex, Lake Ruataniwha, Twizel
Saturday 27 February 2021
Mt Cook Astro Masterclass Workshop - 4 Days
Twizel Town Centre, Twizel
From Saturday 7 August 2021 to Tuesday 10 August 2021
South of France - Fiona Pears and Connor Hartley-Hall
Poppies Cafe & Restaurant, Twizel
Wednesday 3 February 2021
Mt Cook Astro Masterclass Workshop - 4 Days
Twizel Town Centre, Twizel
From Thursday 12 August 2021 to Sunday 15 August 2021

Nest on JollieNest on Jollie - Holiday Home.

Set in Twizel, Nest on Jollie offers air-conditioned accommodation with a patio and free WiFi. Featuring free private...

H2 Explore HovercraftH2 Explore Hovercraft - Sightseeing Cruise - Lake Pukaki.

Experience Lake Pukaki's scenic beauty and vistas of Mount Cook onboard H2 explore's hovercraft.


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