Lake Taupo Tourist Attractions
Lake Taupo Tourist Attractions – Lake Taupo is a lake located in the North Island of New Zealand. The lake lies in the caldera of the Taupo Volcano. With a surface area of 238 sq mi, lake Taupo is known as the largest lake by surface area in New Zealand, and as the second biggest freshwater lake by surface area in geopolitical Oceania after the Lake Murray in Papua New Guinea.
One of the best things about Taupo and its surrounding region is the mere amount of free activities on offer. It is surrounded by native bush, naturally heated thermal hot spots, world-class mountain biking tracks, an enormous, freshwater lake, and waterfalls.
1. Huka Falls
Huka Falls are the most visited natural attraction in New Zealand, and this thundering waterfall lives up to the hype. The Falls have an incredible sight, more than 220,000 litres of water flow through the rocks face per second, which is enough to fill 2 Olympic sized swimming pools, per second. Huka Falls are easily reached on foot or by car, located off SH1 just north of Taupo on the Huka Falls Loop Road.
2. Aratiatia Rapids
Tourists can watch the raging torrent of water wave through the Aratiatia Rapids as the hydro gates are opened, and this natural attraction of Taupo is brought to life. The gates open at 10 am, 12 pm, 2 pm and 4 pm during summer and 10 am, 12 noon and 2 pm during winter. Signposted off the SH5m, the rapids are about 10 km north of Lake Taupo. To take advantage of the best scenery make sure you can arrive 15 minutes early and walk on the short track to one of 2 lookout points.
3. Spa Park to Huka Falls Walk
Pass the Spa Park Taupo Hot Pools from the Spa Park and follow the track beside the Waikato River, then enjoying the surrounding bush and fresh air. This track will take you away from the river and offers some great views of native bush, mid-channel islands, cliffs, and the exclusive Huka Lodge. Be sure you bring your camera since you get closer you will start to hear the roaring sounds of the Huka Falls. It takes 2 hours for the return journey on foot or arrange a transport from the Huka Falls car park.
4. Spa Park Hot Pools
The Otumuheke Stream winds its way through a set of small natural Taupo hot pools before merging with the Waikato River at the Spa Park which creating a wonderful free swimming hole. The Spa Park hot spot is frequented by both locals and visitors as it is a great place to relax and soak in the open air. Tourists can get changed at the toilets before walking down to the park, since there are no facilities at the water’s edge. Please respect the natural environment around, keep this place clean and enjoy a soak in the thermal.
5. Huka Honey Hive
It is a mecca of all things which bee related. Tourists can enjoy free tastings of honey, fruit wines, mead, and liqueurs at the largest showcase of honey products in New Zealand. Learn about the amazing honeybee as viewing live beehives, and test a variety of honey based skincare and wellness products. It is available daily from 9 am to 5 pm, and located off SH1 north in Wairakei Tourist Park in Lake Taupo.
There are a lot of vantage points for sightseeing spotted all over Turangi, Lake Taupo, and the surrounding areas. Something worth visiting is the Taupo Bungy platform where tourists can have a coffee and watch people taking a 47-metre plunge into the Waikato River.
7. Walk around Great Lake Taupo
Take in the beautiful scenery on one of many Taupo walks around the region, see the Aratiatia Rapids, the famous Huka Falls, or just soak in the lakeside buzz and wander along the lakefront.
8. Drive around Great Lake Taupo
Drive about 160 km around gorgeous Lake Taupo through the State Highway One and Western Bays Highway. Take a picnic then stop at a few of the a lot of beautiful swimming spots along the way.
9. Botanical Reserve
Located up in the suburbs, Waipahihi Botanical Reserve has spectacular sceneries over the Great Lake Taupo to the Tongariro National Park’s mountains. This reserve was established in 1966 and is filled with native plants and trees alongside walking tracks, enhanced and beautifully maintained by the dedicated volunteers. The gates are open daily until dusk, located at the top of Shepherd Road.
10. Walking, Hiking and Tramping
There are a lot of walks around Taupo ranging from an hour to some days. Tourists can pick up a local brochure or get the Great Lake Taupo Guide to Hikes and Walks brochure from the Taupo i-Site for just some dollars.