The SWIM program

a Lake Swimming Adventure

THe SWIM stay Program

The Wanaka-XC Ruby Swim stay is designed for swimmers (and spouses) participating in the Ruby Swim race. Guests will participate in daily fully supported swims in Lake Wanaka - leaving you to relax and absorb the spectaular mountain surrounds of Wanaka each afternoon. We will look after you from pick up at Queenstown airport - all you need to do is get there and we will take care of the rest. Tim and Nicole of Wanaka-XC have a passion for swimming and Wanaka - and look forward to showing you the secret treasures this town has to offer. We will make your stay an unforgettable holiday experience!

What's the program?

We have put together an exciting program for your week with us. Our daily swim will be early, to get the most out of the day - aiming to be back at base by 11 am each day. The swims will be 1.5 hours in duration. We plan to swim at remote locations around the Lake during the week. During our swims we can provide you with a swim technique review.

Our stay includes all meals - breakfast, lunch and dinner with the exception of one evening.

Our professional masseur will give you a massage before or after race day - its all part of the program!

Your afternoons are free and flexible - we can transport you the attractions available and provide information to help you decide on what to do.

2020 Program

Main focus
Afternoon / evening
Monday 20 Jan 2020
Pick up at 1 pm from Queenstown Airport
Pick up from down-town Queenstown or airport, transported in our bus to Wanaka and settle into your base for the week. 
Meet and greet your fellow swimmers and then after supper a gentle but spectacular walk to Wanaka's lake front to watch the sunset over the mountains.
Tuesday 21 Jan 
Wanaka Lake Front
First swim close in to the Lake Wanaka shorefront. Easy swim for all to acclimatise to the clear fresh water. A swim to "The Rock" is possible for those keen for a little more distance.
At your leisure - Wanaka XC can transport you to activities or help book you into any of the Wanaka tourist attractions. To whet your appetite, see: lake wanaka activities
Wednesday 22 Jan 
Build and technique.
Higher intensity swim - swim near Glendhu Bay from a isolated beach on the side of Lake Wanaka. 
Each afternoon our massuer will be providing individual massages - you can book yours in when you arrive for an afternoon that suits you.
Thursday 23 Jan 
Remote by boat swim
Boat trip out to a remote location which will be decided based on the weather and wind direction on the day. A long swim but one you will remember forever. Packed lunch on the boat.
Relaxing afternoon of recovery. Visit Wanaka's evening market before you make your own way for dinner in town. 
Friday 24 Jan
Race taper
An easy swim to conserve energy and focus on the forthcoming event. Discuss course, strategy and nutrition.
Dinner at base - charging you up with plenty of energy.
Saturday 25 Jan
Race day
7.00 am : 10 km
9.00 am : all others
Soak up the atmosphere of the Ruby Island Swim event and all that it offers.  
Celebration dinner post race at Speights Ale House in the middle of town. A great way to revel in your race experience and enjoy the post race euphoria.
Sunday 26 Jan
Easy swim near Clutha river outlet of Lake Wanaka for another incredible experience.
Lunch on the gorgeous balcony of our base with a local glass of wine soaking up the sun. What better way to end the Wanaka XC luxury event stay!
Monday 27 Jan
Check out at 10 am
Drop off at Queenstown Airport @ 11 am
We will transport you to Queenstown Airport by 11 am or Queenstown CBD if you prefer.

WHat We provide

Included in the price are the following:

Note : we cannot provide single rooms due to accommodation limitations.  We only have twin and double rooms.  If you are travelling alone and are happy to share a twin room let us know and we will work it out with you. 


All inclusive price of $1,950 NZD per person

Be quick
Early bird special until 30 Jun 2017!
All inclusive price of $1,699 NZD per person

Not included - but can be arranged at additional cost:

More information and FAQs

How cold is the water?

Summer water temperatures in Lake Wanaka average at 17.5C  and can be up to 19C. Note that the temperature can be lower but this is dependent on the weather conditions leading up to the week (in 2018 it was 18.5C - a good year!). A wetsuit is compulsory for safety reasons. We will keep you updated on how the lake temperature is trending before the stay so you can add some booties / hoodie if you think you need it.
Your safety is paramount. We will have kayak / SUP support on all swims which will be conducted along the shore line in all instances.  We will provide high visibility swimming buoys for all swimmers to ensure we know where everyone is at any given time. Our swim stay is suited for swimmers that are able to swim comfortably a distance of 3 km - consistency is key not necessarily speed.  We will assess all individuals abilities during our first swim and plan accordingly so all attendees leave feeling accomplished. All swims will be subject to suitable weather conditions - which, as we are in the mountains, can change plans. We'll make the best of the conditions and reserve the right to modify the program as required.

How far will we swim each day?

Our first swim will be shorter to assess everyone's abilities and acclimatise to lake swimming.  From there the average daily swim length will be around one and a half hours. The pristine fresh waters of the lake and exceptional mountain views will keep you stimulated, with no fear of sharks (!) you can relax and enjoy.  The deep clear water affords amazing visibility as you experience the thrill of swimming over the lake's shelf.  For most days we will have lunch in scenic locations around Lake Wanaka after our morning swim.

I have a partner who isn't a strong swimmer - but would like to attend?

If you have a partner who is able to swim but not long distances we can easily enable them to swim a shorter distance on some of our swims. On the other mornings there are spectacular walking paths along the coast between our start and finishing points, so they can exercise (we can introduce them to nordic walking) and meet us at our destination. The swim will be in the morning of every day finishing at lunch, leaving plenty of time for couples to see the sights around Wanaka during the afternoon.

If you have a partner who is not keen to swim, they can join us along the shoreline to our swimming destination, or alternatively we can suggest many options around Wanaka for the morning while the swimmers are swimming.

If you have any other questions, please contact us using the form at the foot of this page.

AND our guests say....

"Our hosts looked after us beautifully with our every need met, especially the planning undertaken to make our swims safe but adventurous. With the magnificent backdrop of mountains and the stunning waters of Lake Wanaka, an experience here is well recommended "

Cathy, Australia


Sue, Australia


" Since our stay with you in Feb this year, I have told so many people how much I enjoyed the whole experience;  the accomodation was extremely  comfortable, the food excellent and the baked vegies and fish recipe has become a favourite. But how do you describe the daily swims in crystal clear water with no jellies or sharks to worry about, the sensation of swimming along the cliff face and the boat trip to one of our swim locations with Mt Aspiring looming in the background? To be floating in the water taking in the remarkable surroundings was simply breathtaking "

"Firstly, thank you so much for a lovely week. It was great swimming in Lake Wanaka - all those different places we went to were simply stunning.
The food was wonderful. Breakfast provisions were great. Your dinners fabulous.
The support crew on all our swims was top notch. Never worried for a moment that I could head off unnoticed in the wrong direction
The house was well-located to town and it had everything needed for a splendid stay."

Deb, Australia