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Things to do in
Lake Rotorua

Lake Rotorua: Our most recommended tours and activities

Rotorua Lake: Deluxe Lake Spa Geothermal Hot Spring Bathing

1. Rotorua Lake: Deluxe Lake Spa Geothermal Hot Spring Bathing

Relax and unwind at Rotorua’s iconic Polynesian Spa – a world-leading, natural mineral bathing and luxury spa retreat. Geothermal waters nourish the skin and relieve tired muscles and aches and pains, while decadent therapies rejuvenate body, mind and soul. This ticket provides access to the premium bathing area, the Deluxe Lake Spa, which includes a range of mineral rock pools at various temperatures. Using both alkaline and acidic mineral springs, the Deluxe Lake Spa is the ultimate geothermal bathing experience. The therapeutic waters at Polynesian Spa come from two different natural springs. The Priest Spring is named after Father Mahoney, a Catholic Priest who was "cured" of his crippling arthritis from bathing in the waters in 1878. The slightly acidic water from the Priest Spring relieves tired muscles and aches and pains. The Rachel Spring is a source of alkaline water, which features the antiseptic action of sodium silicate nourishing the skin. It was historically said that those who bathe in the waters of the Rachel Spring are blessed with ageless beauty. The combination of these two types of mineral waters is only found at Polynesian Spa. This spa was built on the site of historic bathhouses that first made the city world-famous in the 1800s. At Polynesian Spa, elements of early buildings and baths have been carefully retained and the site is registered by the New Zealand Historic Places Trust. There is a cafe on site serving delicious smoothies, gelato, freshly squeezed juices and a range of food options. There is also a well-stocked Spa Essentials Gift shop that stocks a range of high-end spa products as well as home and personal care products, bathing suits and towels. The area overlooks a birdlife sanctuary on Sulphur Bay on Lake Rotorua and there are many walking paths to

Auckland: Hobbiton, Rotorua and Wai-O-Tapu Day Tour

2. Auckland: Hobbiton, Rotorua and Wai-O-Tapu Day Tour

The tour starts with pickup from Auckland city, where the adventure begins as you drive through the stunning Waikato countryside, the most extensive farming area in the world, on a fully guided journey to Hobbiton.  Along the way, don’t forget to take advantage of the photo opportunities as you admire the stunning natural landscapes of beautiful mountains and farmlands. After the drive, arrive at Alexander Family Sheep Farm and Shire's Rest, the entrance to Hobbiton, and marvel at the thousands of sheep that live here. While you’re here, grab a bite to eat, a coffee, or enjoy an ice cream to cool off while your guide collects your tickets to the movie set. Next, hop on board one of the big green Hobbiton buses to depart on your 2.5 hour fully guided tour of this amazing 12-acre movie set with a professional Hobbiton guide to ensure you get the most out of your visit. During your tour trip into the lush pastures of the Shire, visit 44 hobbit holes, see amazing gardens, hear secrets and stories about the making of the movies and finish your LOTR experience with a cold beverage at the famous Hobbiton pub, The Green Dragon Inn. After your LOTR experience, it’s time to continue southwards towards the active geothermal area of Rotorua. During the drive, pass through the unique town of Tirau, the corrugated iron sculpture capital of the world, and the stunning Fitzgerald Glade. Upon arrival in Rotorua, enjoy a guided tour of the city’s most famous and historical sites including Lake Rotorua, The Government Gardens, the Blue Baths, Thermal Springs, and Polynesian Spa. Take some time to rest for lunch and then head to Wai-O-Tapu Geothermal Wonderland considered one of the most surreal places on earth.  Here, admire Champagne Lake, Devil’s Bath, local mud pools, geothermal craters, and other geothermal wonders before a fully guided trip back to Auckland and the end of your tour.

Rotorua: Guided Horseback Riding Day Trip on Mt. Ngongotaha

3. Rotorua: Guided Horseback Riding Day Trip on Mt. Ngongotaha

Soak up the tranquility of Mount Ngongotaha and search for local wildlife on this guided horseback ride from Rotorua. Expereince the magic of Lake Rotorua and views of the city from a different perspective. Meet your guide at the activity provider's office in Rotorua. Meet your horse and be given a brief introduction on how to ride and be at one with your horse. Once you are feeling confident, begin your horseback riding tour. See some unique New Zealand native bush, bustling with birds and animals. Ride on higher trails, where there are large swathes of land are covered in silver ferns. Keep an eye out for birds like the Kererū, the New Zealand fantail, and the weka. Reach a viewpoint on Mount Ngongotaha that offers breathtaking views of the sparkling waters of Lake Rotorua. Return to your starting point with unforgettable memories.

From Auckland: Hobbiton & Rotorua Tour with Lunch at Te Puia

4. From Auckland: Hobbiton & Rotorua Tour with Lunch at Te Puia

Enjoy the magic of Middle Earth at the Hobbiton Movie Set and delight in Maori culture at Te Puia Maori Village in Rotorua on a day tour from Auckland. Travel in comfort with a small group and an experienced local guide in a late-model Mercedes or a similarly configured the vehicle to provide extra leg room and space for your comfort.  After the pick-up from your hotel, journey through gorgeous Waikato scenery to Hobbiton. On arrival, set off on an official 2-hour guided tour through the picturesque twelve-acre site. Learn fascinating details of how a beautiful piece of Waikato farmland was transformed into The Shire from Middle-Earth. At the end of your tour, savor a complimentary drink at the Green Dragon Inn.  Climb back into the vehicle for the 55-minute drive to Rotorua. Arrive at Te Puia Maori Village where you will have a freshly prepared hangi lunch featuring traditional Maori food. With plenty of time to explore, discover the Pohutu geyser, mud pools, hot springs, silica formations, and the iconic Kiwi bird. Visit the national schools of wood carving, weaving, stone and bone carving. Then explore Rotorua, visiting the lakefront and the government gardens, before the return journey to Auckland. You can opt for drop off in Rotorua, just select this option when booking. 

From Tauranga: Skydive over Mount Maunganui

5. From Tauranga: Skydive over Mount Maunganui

Start your adventure with a flight capturing the breathtaking views of Mount Maunganui and its golden beaches expanding as far as the eye can see. Higher up, you'll be able to see White Island, Mount Ruapehu, the Rotorua Lakes, The Coromandel, and Mount Taranaki. The flight will last 20-25 minutes, so there is plenty of time to take it all in. Once at 12,000 or 15,000 feet in the sky, jump out of the plane on a tandem skydive, falling to the earth at over 200km/hour. After some time to feel the adrenaline as you freefall, enjoy a peaceful parachute ride back to base.

Auckland: Hobbiton and Rotorua with Te Puia Tour

6. Auckland: Hobbiton and Rotorua with Te Puia Tour

Your tour begins as you are collected in a comfortable modern mini-bus. From there, travel through the beautiful Waikato countryside - New Zealand's most extensively farmed area. During the trip south, encounter stunning scenery, great photo opportunities, and beautiful mountains, as well as several different farm animals along the way. Following your drive, arrive to the Alexander Family Sheep Farm and Shire's Rest, the entrance to Hobbiton. There you can see thousands of sheep, grab something to eat, get a coffee fix, or enjoy an ice cream as your guides arrange your tickets to the movie set. Next, board one of the green Hobbiton buses to depart on a fully guided 2.5-hour tour of this amazing 12-acre movie set with an expert Hobbiton Movie set guide who ensures you get the most out of your visit. During your tour, step into the lush pastures of the Shire, visit 44 different hobbit holes, see amazing gardens, hear the charming secrets and stories about the making of the movies, and finish your Lord of the Rings experience with a cold beverage at the famous Hobbiton Pub, the Green Dragon Inn. After your Lord of the rings experience, travel back through the Alexander Family Sheep Farm before heading south to the active geothermal area of Rotorua. Throughout your trip, pass through the unique town of Tirau - the corrugated iron sculpture capital of the world, and the stunning Fitzgerald Glade, seeing many more stunning landscapes as you head over the Kaimai ranges. Once in Rotorua, travel with your guides as they show you around the historical sites including Lake Rotorua, the Government Gardens, the Blue Baths, the Thermal Springs, and the Polynesian Spa. From there, head to one of the most famous attractions in New Zealand, the Te Puia Geothermal Park. Once in the park, set off for a fully guided tour around the surreal park to see it's geothermal and cultural wonders. Observe the Pōhutu Geyser (the biggest geyser in the southern hemisphere), Māori Architecture, the National Māori Arts School, geothermal craters, and geothermal events. There's even the chance to view a kiwi bird in the kiwi viewing house, before you travel back to Auckland with your guide.

From Auckland: One-Way Trip to Rotorua with Waitomo Caves

7. From Auckland: One-Way Trip to Rotorua with Waitomo Caves

One Way tour from Auckland to the beautiful Waitomo Glowworm Caves and geothermal wonderland of Rotorua (One way trip). On this tour you will be picked up from the hotel in our comfortable mini-bus and driven through the stunning Waikato countryside on a fully guided journey to Waitomo Caves. During the journey to Waitomo you will encounter New Zealand's longest river, beautiful mountains, and see several different farm animals along the way. Once in Waitomo you will explore the ancient and amazing caves, with it's many different cave formations including Stalactites, Stalagmites and Lime Columns, before descending even further underground for your glowworm experience. Board your glowworm boat for a cruise on the grotto river with thousands of glowworms - which are unique to New Zealand - glittering above your head. Waitomo Glowworm Caves are a must see for any traveler. We will continue our adventure with another fully guided journey south to Rotorua, with many more attractions to see along the way, including hydro dams, rivers and lots more animals. Once in Rotorua we will guide you past many of its famous and historical sites, including Lake Rotorua, The Government Gardens, Blue Baths, Thermal Springs and Polynesian Spa, before dropping you at your accommodation or a central Rotorua location.

Rotorua: ZORB Inflatable Ball Rides

8. Rotorua: ZORB Inflatable Ball Rides

Take on an iconic New Zealand experience in Rotorua. Roll down a hill inside a giant inflatable ball filled with 40 liters of water! Superman dive into the ZORB ball on your own, or with friends, as you slip, slide, and laugh your way down the slope. The specially designed ball means you will remain right-side up and not get dizzy. On cold days, we use warm water in the ZORB balls. Hot spas will keep you toasty in between rides and there are heated changing rooms for afterwards. Delicious coffee and hot chocolates made by baristas are also available on-site. 

From Auckland: One-Way Transfer to Rotorua w/ Hobbiton Tour

9. From Auckland: One-Way Transfer to Rotorua w/ Hobbiton Tour

Travel in comfort from Auckland to Rotorua on this one day tour and experience the world-famous Lord of The Rings Hobbiton movie set in the heart of Middle Earth, as well as Rotorua City. Your tour starts with a pick up from your hotel in our comfortable minibus and drive through the stunning Waikato countryside, the most extensive farming area in the world, on a fully guided journey to Hobbiton. During the trip south you will encounter stunning scenery, great photo opportunities, beautiful mountains and several different farm animals along the way. After our drive, we will arrive at the Alexander family sheep farm and Shire's Rest, which is the entrance to Hobbiton. Here you can see thousands of sheep, grab a bite to eat, get your coffee fix or enjoy an ice cream while we collect your tickets to the Hobbiton movie set. Next you will board one of the big green Hobbiton buses to depart on your 2.5 hour fully guided tour of this amazing 12 acre movie set with a professional Hobbiton guide to ensure you get the most out of your visit. During your tour you will step into the lush pastures of the Shire, visit 44 hobbit holes, see amazing gardens, hear the secrets and stories about the making of the movies, and ending with a cold beverage at the famous Hobbiton pub The Green Dragon Inn. After your Lord of the rings experience you will be guided back through the Alexander Family Sheep Farm before continuing south to the active geothermal area of Rotorua. During the trip we will pass through the unique town of Tirau (the corrugated iron sculpture capital of the world), the stunning Fitzgerald Glade, plus many more attractions to see along the way. At the end of the tour we will drop you at your accommodation in Rotorua (central hotels only) or at a main Rotorua central Location. The ultimate, comprehensive Auckland to Rotorua small group tour!

Rotorua: Scenic Flight over Mt Tarawera & Waimangu Valley

10. Rotorua: Scenic Flight over Mt Tarawera & Waimangu Valley

Departing from the Rotorua lakefront, experience the thrill of a floatplane take off, climbing around Mokoia Island and over the ridge to the hidden lakes district. Take in the vibrant lakes and native NZ bush before flying up and over the Volcanic Peaks of Mount Tarawera. At 3680 feet in elevation this majestic dormant volcano dominates the surrounding landscape and plays center piece to the stunning lakes which surrounds it. Your pilot will fly you directly over the 8km crater rift line left by the largest eruption in New Zealand’s living memory. The 1886 eruption devastated the local area including our famous Pink and White Terraces (once claimed as the eighth wonder of the world). Included in the flight is views over the stunning lakes district and aerial views of the Waimangu Thermal Valley and its vibrant Inferno Crater and Frying Pan Lake. Returning to Rotorua your descent takes you past the Whakarewarewa Thermal Valley, Pohutu Geyser and over the city before landing back on Lake Rotorua.

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What people are saying about Lake Rotorua

Overall rating

4.6
(98 reviews)

I thought the tour was great. Unfortunately a bit expensive and a long journey, but I was prepared for that. There were snacks and water during the trip. There were also enough pee breaks. The guide was in a great mood. Unfortunately it rained, but we made the best of it.

From start to finish the trip was well organized. The guide; Grant was very accommodating to all the people on the trip, explaining all the different pieces of information about the trip and in general about New Zealand. Had a brilliant time and learnt a lot, Thankyou

Alessandro was a fantastic guide. He was giving great facts and your explanations the whole drive, was funny, and kind. Def a great guide for cheeky kiwi

So much fun. Beautiful horses, great guides and fantastic views.

our tour guide Malcolm was very informative and was very helpful