Sustainable Trails
Conference 2024
Central Otago,
New Zealand 

Conference Location:  Cromwell, Central Otago

Conference venue:  The Gate

How to Get There

The nearest major airport to Cromwell is Queenstown Airport, which is approximately a 50-minute drive away. Queenstown is serviced by major car hire companies.

Queenstown to Cromwell : Via State Highway 6 – approximately 50 minutes drive (60km)

Christchurch to Cromwell: Via State Highway 8 – approximately 5 hours drive (423km)


The climate during March in Cromwell is mild and reasonably dry. Daytime maximum temperatures average around 19°C (66°F), whilst at night 23°C (73°F) is normal.


The Gate Cromwell (on site of conference venue)

Bookings can be made directly via phone +64 3 445 1777 or email 

Mention you are with the TRC Sustainable Trails Conference to receive conference rates. Room types include single, double or twin share. Conference room rates are $260/night per room, with an additional option of $25 per person per day for a hot buffet breakfast.

Colonial Manor Motel Cromwell (300 meters from venue)

W: Colonial Manor Motel – Cromwell, Central Otago – book direct with the hotel

Ph: +64 3 445 0184

ASURE Central Gold Motel Cromwell (350 meters from conference venue)

W: ASURE Central Gold Motel Accommodation Cromwell, Central Otago, NZ

Ph: +64 3 445 4700

ARRIVAL | Monday 18th March 2024 

No formally organised events, arrival day for those travelling from afar.

Day ONE | Tuesday 19th March 2024 

Arrive at The Gate by 8am.  No pre-registration, just collect your lanyard and grab a tea or coffee.

Be prepared for a full conference day which leads into the Welcome Function, drinks and informal dinner on the deck. We anticipate an 8-9pm finish. 

Wear casual conference clothes and something warm to put on as the sun goes down.

Day TWO | Wednesday 20th March 2024 

Arrive at The Gate by 8am and come prepared for your field trips.

MTB riders will need:

  • Your bike and helmet (if you are using your own) – no formal storage is available at The Gate, but your bike can be kept in the courtyard, so bring a lock – if bringing your own bike, arrive early enough to sort this before the start of the conference. 
  • MTB attire 
  • Water bottle/hydration pack and/or small backpack for snacks
  • Sunscreen and insect repellent
  • In the event of rainy weather, wet weather gear and some dry clothes (these can be left of the bus).

Walkers will need: 

  • Walking attire (good shoes, hat, long sleeve shirt, sunglasses)
  • Backpack (to carry a packed lunch)
  • Water bottle/hydration pack 
  • Sunscreen and insect repellent 
  • In the event of rainy weather, bring a raincoat and some dry clothes (these can be left on the bus).

All food will be provided for the field trips. 

After the field trip all delegates will return to Cromwell. The time will vary depending on each field trips but will be anywhere from 4.30pm – 6.30pm. This will be confirmed on the day of field trip based on weather and other factors.

Wednesday evening you are free to explore. Check out our list of recommendations at the bottom. 

Day THREE | Thursday 21st March 2024 

Arrive at The Gate at 8am for a full day of conference.

The conference will finish around 4.30/5pm, enough time to head back to your accommodation and freshen up before the bus departs for the Canyon at approximately 6pm. Dress code is smart casual. There will be two return buses, one early around 9.30pm and one a bit later around 10.30pm.

DEPARTURE | Friday 22nd March 2024 

Departure day for those that have not already started the journey home, or stay on and experience more of what the region has to offer.  

Dining Recommendations – pre booking is recommended

Venue Walking Cycling Driving Phone Email Notes
Five Stage Bar & Restaurant        034451777 Conference Venue
Amigos  4 min 1 min   034458263 Mexican
Thai Crom 4 min 1 min   034451546 Thai
Cromwell Brew House 4 min 1 min   034450725 Pub food
The Stoaker Room 15 min 5 min 3 min 034454841 Barrel cooked cuisine
Cromwell Town & Country Club 25 min 7 min 4 min 034451169 Club members alcoholic beverages only
Penny Black Cocktail Bar 30 min 7 min 4 min 034283229 Bar food & cocktails
Victoria Arms Hotel 30 min 7 min 4 min 034450607 Pub food
Moorings Restaurant   25 min 8 min 034453417 Seated fine dining
Panners Bar & Kitchen     8 min 033959771 Pizza’s & cocktails
Olivers Restaurant     25 min 034492805 Seated fine dining 
Paulina’s Bar     25 min 034493236 Light bar menu 
Post Office Cafe & Bar     25 min 034492488 Seated fine dining

What did past attendees think?

The Sustainable Trails Conference provided an excellent opportunity to share best practice across a variety of topics from trail building to governance. Each session was valuable in its own right. Great to see the collaboration between our two countries as we all strive to make the most of this growing community.

Diane Drummond | General Manager | Hauraki Rail Trail Charitable Trust

The sustainable trails conference is a must do for all those involved in the planning, development and marketing of tracks and trails.

Anthony Burton | Principal | Anthony Burton & Associates

A well run and organised conference, excellent speakers who certainly provided a range of information in the topics presented. Took away some key learnings.

Jane Tito | Marlborough

I have been to a lot of conferences before, this was one of the best I have ever attended.

Mick Tucker | Mayor, Break O'Day Council

A fantastic conference. Great speaker line-up with leaders in the field. Learned a lot and made new connections.

Francesca Governali | Conservation & Tourism Fellow | Dartmouth College

The Sustainable Trails Conference provides a unique opportunity to appreciate the importance of trails to local economies and tourism, the amount of work going on in this space, and to share and learn from others working in the field.

Suky Thompson | Trust Manager | Rod Donald Banks Peninsula Trust

Check out our previous conferences

Marlborough, New Zealand 2019

Alice Springs, NT Australia 2021

St Helens Tasmania, Australia 2022