- The café and restaurant scene. For cafes, we liked Nova in the Octagon, Perc in Stuart St, and The Good Oil in George St with two fine atmospheric paintings by Sam Foley, one shown opposite. On the restaurant side we had a big night out in Two Chefs. Great friendly service in all of them (and in the retail shops more generally)
- The architectural heritage - and not just the Railway Station, but all over. Dunedin did very well in the second half of the 19th century from the gold rush and the meat trade, and the architectural legacy of the period is everywhere (unlike some other cities I could mention...). Plus Dunedin's a relatively compact size for exploring
- The City Art Gallery. Good rotation of the permanent collection - which includes a nice Monet (opposite), a charming Tissot and a good Sidney Nolan - and generally interesting exhibitions, though the current ones didn't do so much for me. On the other hand the last time I was there they had a great exhibition of Gregory Crewdson
- The Otago Settlers Museum, a day's worth of fossicking in itself. Much more interesting than the relatively content-free Te Papa
- Book shops. I've been a long time fan of the University Bookshop, and this time round came across the Hard to Find Bookshop in Dowling St.
- The yellow-eyed penguin reserve at Penguin Place on the Otago peninsula.
- The local Emerson's beer is widely available on tap
- Walking - we had an excellent bush walk, from Bethune's Gully to the top of Mt Cargill. Lots of native birdsong, extensive views at the top
- The night-time view over Dunedin from the monument at the top of Signal Hill
- Free WiFi in the centre of town.
Any downsides? It can be cold - it was put-another-log-on-the-fire-and-mine's-a-large-Talisker-thanks when we were there - and the one way road systems may well have been the source of Arrow's Impossibility Theorem. But otherwise it's all good. Give it a go, sceptics!
PS Seems some itinerant economist appears to have wandered into that Foley painting...