Anticipating “Dunner stunners”

Enterprise Dunedin director John Christie

As we look forward to another Dunner stunner summer, Otepoti Dunedin is gearing up for a vibrant season of major events which will welcome tens of thousands of visitors into the city to enjoy our excellent southern hospitality, dining, shopping, attractions and entertainment.

Aside from cruise passengers, many of these visitors will be New Zealanders, who make up our biggest visitor market in terms of spend. Attracting Kiwi travellers is an increasingly important focus, given the softening number of international arrivals into the country.

This busy summer period presents an opportunity to showcase our city and all its fantastic attributes and convert these visitors into ambassadors, who will in turn recommend Dunedin to their friends and family.

One way that locals and visitors love to share their fantastic Dunedin experiences is through social media, most commonly using the popular #dunnerstunner hashtag. It’s been used on Instagram over 100,000 times, underlining images of great times, people and places in Otepoti. For a city our size this is an impressive feat and shows the pride we all share in Dunedin, and the impression it makes on newcomers.

As a city marketing tool, we’re planning ways to encourage event-goers and locals alike to share their #dunnerstunner experiences.

The number, variety and standard of this summer’s events is remarkable. Some will attract international attention, such as the Elton John and Queen concerts, the New Zealand Masters Games, a T20 cricket match, a Highlanders vs Sharks rugby game and the Oceania Mountain Bike Championships. Regionally significant events include the Waitangi Day celebrations at Otakou, Brighton Gala Day, Whare Flat Folk Festival, Chinese New Year, Thieves’ Alley Market, and pipe band competitions.

Many of the largest events are taking place in February. Tertiary students will begin arriving for O Week that month too, many with parents in tow to help them settle in, and over 30 cruise ships will be visiting, often two at a time. The largest ship will carry 3600 passengers and 1100 crew, the smallest accommodates 114 passengers and 74 crew.

Among February’s many concerts, games and celebrations, locals and visitors will have plenty to do, see and experience due to many Dunedin City Council and community-led events.

And don’t worry friends coming into town over summer and in February in particular, there is still accommodation available in the city and the Dunedin i-SITE Visitor Information Centre is happy to help.