Taupo was one of many places we visited during our road trip through the North Island with Wild Kiwi.
The town of Taupo sits at the edge of Australasia’s largest lake, and the lake is the crater of one of the largest volcanic eruptions of the last 5000 years. Taupo is the perfect place to visit for the outdoorsy type, with amazing activities to experience on and around the water. From jet boating to skydiving – there is just so many things to see & do!
Check out our vlog below to see what we got up to during our visit to Taupo, and keep scrolling if you would like to read more on everything you need to know for a visit here!
1. Huka Falls Jet
One of New Zealand’s most visited natural attraction is Huka Falls – and the best way to experience it is via a jet boat! Huka Falls Jet is a 30 minute high speed ride taking you to the base of Huka Falls.
Jet boating was invented in New Zealand and is one of those things you just have to experience while you’re here. There are number of spots across NZ you can jet boat, but we highly recommend trying it out while you’re in Taupo.
If you are after a good laugh check out the video we shared above to see what it’s like flying through the water on a high speed jet boat!
2. Natural Thermal Pools… FOR FREE
If you are looking for a free soak in some natural hot pools head out to Otumuheke Stream. This hot stream flows into the Waikato River naturally forming these hot pools at the perfect temperature to bathe in. Just pop the location into google maps and you may have a natural hot pool all to yourself!
3. Bungy Jump
Many people travel to New Zealand with the goal of conquering their fear of heights and experiencing a bungy – and Taupo is a great place to do just that. You will jump surrounded by stunning scenery on a cliff top above the Waikato River, located just upstream from Huka Falls.
With a 47 metre free-fall towards the water, here you have the option of the “water touch”, where you will have the choice to splash into the river below from just your hands to your entire body!
To book check out Taupo Bungy.
If you are looking for something a little more extreme than bungy jumping, why not go skydiving!
With the option to jump has high as 15,000 feet, Taupo Tandem Skydive takes place above the spectacular natural scenery of the greater Taupo region. This also gives you a way to experience how large Lake Taupo truly is, as it is roughly the size of Singapore!
Have you skydived before? We would love to read about your skydive experience in the comments below!
5. Geothermal Park: Craters of the Moon
Just a few minutes outside of Taupo, Craters of the Moon is an active geothermal area filled with exposed steam vents which are constantly collapsing, shifting and reforming – giving it that otherworldly appearance.
A visit here will allow you to experience bubbling craters, colourful soils and incredible plants that have adapted to thrive in this harsh, hot environment. There are a number of boardwalks and pathways leading you through the area to ensure you don’t find yourself in an area you don’t want to be falling into!
6. Maori Rock Carvings
Accessible only by boat, these 10m high carvings were etched into the cliffs by master carver Matahi Whakataka-Brightwell in the late 1970s. To see them you can go on a sunrise or sunset cruise, or for the more adventurous we recommend checking them out via canoe or kayak.
7. Tongariro Alpine Crossing
If you love a good hike than you can not visit Taupo without doing the Tongariro Alpine Crossing!
The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is rated as one of the best one-day hikes in New Zealand! You will trek across a volcanic alpine landscape, with steaming vents, glacial valleys, ancient lava flows, alpine vegetation and vivid crater lakes, all the while having stunning views.
It is a full day hike at 19.4 km long, covering some of the most dramatic landscapes you’ll see in New Zealand. Tongariro National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Area and was the first in the world to receive cultural World Heritage Status.
8. White Water Rafting
What’s awesome about white water rafting in the Taupo region is that it is available year round. Taupo also has some of the most diverse white water rafting in the North Island.
Most of Taupo’s white water rafting is done on the Tongariro River, situated at the southern end of Lake Taupo. The Tongariro River is the largest river feeding the lake. It produces three sections of world-class white water from Grade 2 to Grade 4 – which means this can be a great activity for families, as well as the thrill seekers.
9. Picnic by the Lake
A nice way to experience Lake Taupo is to organise a little picnic and have it by the lake. If you haven’t had some already, we recommend going to the local fish & chip shop (or fush & chups as the locals call it).
10. Wairakei Terraces
If you are looking for a spot in the Taupo region with incredible geothermal-heated waters to relax in than this is the best spot for it. It is a beautiful spot, featuring a series of silica terraces filled with naturally mineral-rich waters.
Visiting here in the winter is best as the snowfall brings this place to life, with the white contrasting beautifully with the vivid blue pools. There is nothing like bathing in hot pools as snowflakes are falling on you!
A big thank you to Wild Kiwi for supporting Flying the Nest and making this trip possible.