Rotorua Regional Info (App Version)
Over a third of Rotorua's populion is Maori, the highest proportion of any city in New Zealand.
Rotorua is a city surrounded by lakes,15 of which are fishable with trout.
Waimangu Volcanic Valley is the youngest geothermal system on the planet. The valley is a wildlife refuge and protected scenic reserve.
Zorbing in Rotorua, the adventure that involves rolling down a hill in a large inflatable ball, was the first of its kind anywhere in the world.
Lake Rotorua was created over 140,000 years ago.
The most popular reason for coming to Rotorua is to witness the extraordinary, natural phenomenon of geothermal activity. Steaming geysers, bubbling mud pools and ledges of colourful silica litter the landscape surrounding the city. Recommended visits include Waimangu Volcanic Valley, Wai-O-Tapu and Orakei Korako, which is located further out towards Taupo.
Another big draw for visitors, is Rotorua's rich, Maori heritage. Maori culture is integral to the region, with over 35 maraes, cultural attractions, and live Maori shows. The city's museums and historical recreations are some of the most authentic in the country. Take in a lively Maori show, eat a traditional Maori meal, and marvel at the stories you will hear, that have been passed down through generations of Maori families.
Lakes and Forest:
Rotorua is surrounded by beautiful lakes which offer plenty of fishing, walking trails and water based activities. The city itself is nestled next to Lake Rotorua where most of the main water based activities are operated from. A few minutes drive from the city sits the giant Californian redwoods of Whakarewarewa Forest. The forest is a popular spot for walkers and mountain bikers who take advantage of some of the best trails in the country.
Adventure activities are big business, on a par with Queenstown. Rotorua conjures up adventure thrills and attractions of every kind. White water rafting, jet boating, mountain biking and even 'zorbing' (being pushed down a hill in an inflatable ball...!), are some of the most popular activities.
Spa and Wellness:
Taking advantage of the geothermal activity, naturally, the city is big on spas, so you won't have any trouble finding one of the many mineral pools and wellness centres dotted about the city. The most popular spa is the Polynesian Spa with 26 hot pools overlooking Lake Rotorua.
A short distance from Rotorua, is the stunning Bay of Plenty and 100 miles of golden beaches. You'll find a wealth of soft, sandy beaches, azure ocean, and a very warm climate. Mount Maunganui is the premier resort town with probably the best beach in New Zealand.
A 30 minute drive brings you to Taupo and New Zealand's largest freshwater lake. Water-skiing, kayaking, fishing, sailing...there's not much you can't do here. Just northeast of Taupo, you'll find Huka Falls - the most popular natural tourist attraction in New Zealand. Here, you'll find crystal blue waters, and a roaring waterfall that spews nearly a quarter of a million gallons of water a second, over the clifftop.
The 'old man' of New Zealand's national parks, Tongariro National Park is where much of the Lord Of The Rings film trilogy was filmed. Rich, forest canopies and wild, snow-covered mountains await you along with volcanoes of Ruapehu, Ngauruhoe and Tongariro which stand like guardians over their domain.
Home to the country's one of the world's few (and New Zealand's only) live marine volcanoes, White Island ("Whakaari" in Maori), lies 50km off the coast of Whakatane. From Rotorua, you can reach it by helicopter charter or, drive to Whakatane and take a guided boat trip tour.