The lakeside city of Taupo is an adventure lover’s wonderland, with many ways to have fun outdoors. One day in the central North Island city is enough time to try an extreme sport or two or to have a more relaxed time enjoying Taupo’s scenic beauty. Here’s how to get the most out of one day in Taupo.
With the enormous Lake Taupo lapping at the city’s feet, as well as numerous rivers nearby, there are many ways to have fun on the water in Taupo. Join a white-water-rafting trip (with varying grades to suit your experience), rent a stand-up paddleboard or kayak, or enjoy the thrill of a jet-boat ride to the mighty Huka Falls. If you’d rather not get wet, relax on a sightseeing cruise on the lake, and keep your eyes open for contemporary Maori rock carvings.
While nearby Rotorua is well-known for its geothermal activity, the Taupo area offers some equally beautiful and interesting hot-water and mud pools. Spend a couple of hours in the afternoon at Orakei Korako, Wairakei Thermal Valley, or Craters of the Moon. The colorful, bubbling, steaming, pock-marked ground has an otherworldly feel that’s fun for kids and adults alike.
After a busy day of sightseeing, spend the evening soaking in a thermal bath at Taupo DeBretts Spa Resort. This is a great activity throughout the year: In the colder winter months, the waters will warm you up even when the air is chilly, whereas in the summer there are cooler baths too. You can pay to use a private bath or join a public pool, and kids can also enjoy waterslides and rides.