On the edge : a history of adventure sports and adventure tourism in Queenstown
Brown, Michael Neal Rowatt
This thesis is a history of adventure sports and adventure tourism in Queenstown. It highlights Queenstown's long tradition of adventure from the 1850s to the 1990s. Principally it focuses on the development of Queenstown's four main adventure tourist activities, skiing, jet boating, rafting and bungy jumping, and the companies and personalities who were involved in establishing these pursuits. Queenstown attracts a large number of tourists to the area each year and the availability of adventure activities is an important factor in this. Some have even attached the label 'Queenstown - Adventure Capital of the World' as a means of marketing and promotion. The aura of Queenstown's scenery and natural surroundings engenders a feeling of excitement and encouraged a number of people to offer tourists an opportunity to challenge nature through adventure based activities. In many instances the pursuits that surfaced in Queenstown were the first to be seen in New Zealand, and in one case the world. The thesis also explores what compels individuals to participate in adventure sports, the rise of Wanaka as a secondary centre for adventure seekers and the all-important issue of safety in adventure tourism. After a series of accidents and fatalities the adventure industry has been forced to address safety. One difficulty that was encountered while producing this work was the relative absence of historiography on the subject. Fortunately a number of the major personalities involved are still living in the Queenstown area and interviewing them was a way to overcome this obstacle.
Advisor: McLeod, Hew
Degree Name: Master of Arts
Degree Discipline: History
Publisher: University of Otago
Research Type: Thesis
xvi, 219 leaves :col. ill. ; 30 cm. Includes bibliographical references.