Rotorua sits on the shores of Lake Rotorua of New Zealand. There are several other lakes nearby. Along with the geothermal wonders, there are also the more usual water activities such as fishing, boating and white water rafting. Tourism is a major industry in Rotorua, and for good reason, the tourism services are therefore well developed and visitors should definitely make a stop at the Tourist Information Centre on the main road, Fenton Street.

Whakarewarewa Forest Park

Redwoods Treewalk

Redwoods Forest Park

115-Year-Old redwood trees.


Rotorua is built over a geothermal hot spot. There are numerous natural vents, hot pools and other geothermal features in and around the city. Many of these are in parks and reserves. Natural eruptions of steam, hot water and mud occasionally occur in new locations. Many places have their own private geothermal bores for heating and water for bathing although private use of naturally occurring geothermal water and steam is controlled. It has recently been refurbished. Wai-O-Tapu is also an entertaining day out.

Close-up view of Champagne Pool in Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland

Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland

Geologically, Rotorua is in the middle of the Taupo Volcanic Zone, which is named after Lake Taupo, the largest volcano in the area. There are four major volcanic calderas, which now contain lakes, and several more recognisable volcanoes in the surrounding area. It is this geologically active zone that produces the heat that is needed to drive all the geothermal activity.

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