Image of TSS Earnslaw; copyright Richard Nester.

TSS Earnslaw is one of the world’s oldest and largest remaining coal-fired steamships and has graced the lake since 1912. She is the last of a long line of coal-burning steamers used on the lake to ferry people and goods to inaccessible areas on the shores of Lake Wakatipu from as early as 1863. Now used primarily for pleasure cruising, she takes visitors to the popular Walter Peak High Country Farm for the start of more adventurous experiences on foot and bike and onto the surrounding hills and towering mountains. Visitors can view the engine room with its giant steam engines, while a collection of historical photos in the ship’s museum tell the story of her colourful history. Having carried royalty and movie stars, the ship has also played a cameo role in the movie ‘Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull’. 

Related links

Real Journeys TSS Earnslaw Steamship Lake Cruises

Real Journeys - TSS Earnslaw One of Otago’s Most Significant Heritage sites

Real Journeys YouTube video 'Our People. Our Places'

Engineering New Zealand - TSS Earnslaw

TSS Earnslaw Centenary Celebrations 2012

Te Ara feature on the TSS Earnslaw


Updated on 16th January 2018