Physical Environment

Having an understanding of the physical environment is important whether you are contemplating the opportunities provided by the world’s most southern commercial wine growing area, looking to develop tourism opportunities or looking at any other business or life style-opportunities.

As residents of a small semi-rural district, people and businesses in Central Otago are greatly influenced by the physical environment. Primary industry and primary industry support are the largest business sectors, both in terms of numbers of businesses and people employed. The environment and the landscape is also a magnet for many and is the reason why some people look to establish businesses or pursue lifestyles in Central Otago.


Central Otago has a semi-arid climate characterized by hot summers, cold dry winters, low air humidity and a predominantly westerly wind flow. The Otago Regional Council has available more detailed climate information.

Land cover

Lunar rock covered mountain tops to broad, irrigated pastoral valleys; the Central Otago landscape has it all! Craggy tussock-covered mountain ranges, such as the Dunstan Range dominate the landscape and create natural boundaries to the many valleys and river plains.

Business Directory
Business Groups & Organisations
There are a range of business groups and organisations in Central Otago for networking, advice and business support. Find out details of when and where they meet and how you can contact them. Read More

Economic Development Strategy
The Economic Development strategy’s key purpose is to help the Central Otago community focus on issues that impact on our economic and social well-being, and to suggest some of the actions we can take over the next few years to address them. Read More
Our Regional Identity - A World of Difference
Our Regional Identity - A World of Difference 'A World of Difference' defines what is uniquely Central Otago as a place and a community. Read More

Central Otago NZ - Through Local Eyes
Central Otago NZ - Through Local Eyes Meet some unique and passionate Central Otago locals and be introduced to their favourite places and activities. Read More

Food & Wine
Food & Wine Central Otago is a place of sheer indulgence – whether it’s fine dining, a casual al-fresco lunch or café culture. You will be spoilt for choice when enjoying local fare and award winning wines at the great selection of cafés, restaurants, cellar doors and country pubs. Read More
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