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Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland
Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland

Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland

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201 Waiotapu Loop Road, Rotorua, 3073

The Basics

Thanks to a guiding system of boardwalks Wai-O-Tapu geothermal park is easy to explore on your own. For the best value, visit as part of a full-day tour and also see popular North Island attractions such as the Hobbiton movie set from theLord of the Rings andHobbit trilogies, Waimangu Volcanic Valley, or the Waikato River. For a more personalized experience, small-group and private tours run from the Rotorua and Tauranga cruise ports, and include convenient extras such as hotel pickup and drop-off.

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Tauranga Shore Excursion: Private Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland and Whakarewarewa Maori Cultural Village
Tauranga Shore Excursion: Private Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland and Whakarewarewa Maori Cultural Village
star-5
$285.87 per adult
Traveler Favorite
Since our visit to New Zealand...
Since our visit to New Zealand was Although our visit to New Zealand was mostly via cruise ship, we wanted to see as much as possible at each port of call. Our party of four was extremely fortunate to have Phillip as our guide. We had plenty of time to walk the paths at Wai-O-Tapu, marveling at the amazing colors. The second thermal region in Rotorua was not as large or dramatic but was interesting since it was in a small functioning Maori village. We saw several examples of thermal pools or heat being used for cooking. The Maori cultural performance was OK but not great. I think the usual performers were at a competition in Auckland so I commend those who stepped in. The best part of our tour was Phillip who is extremely knowledgeable and kept up educational commentary as we drove from place to place. He was able to answer all of our questions whether on vegetation, history or culture. I would definitely recommend this tour for those who want to see as much as possible in one day.
Aileen W, Mar 2017

Recent reviews from experiences in Rotorua

star-5
Amazing sights
Jennifer_W, Mar 2020
Wai-O-Tapu & Waimangu Full Day Tour
The tour was basically transfer to n from our hotel n between the sites, which was perfect for us as we like going at our own pace. Our driver Akira was very helpful n stopped at a couple spots of interest on the way for us to take pictures.
star-5
Hobbiton wonderland!
Lilius_C, Mar 2020
Hobbiton & Rotorua including Wai-O-Tapu - Small Group Tour from Auckland
We had a wonderful day out exploring Hobbiton and the geothermal hot springs with Grant our excellent guide.
star-5
AMAZING
Taylor_W, Feb 2020
Wai-O-Tapu & Waimangu Full Day Tour
This was a GREAT tour. Keith was more than amazing pointing out things on the drive, showing us cool places that weren’t exactly outlined in the tour as we had some extra time. You can tell he really loves his job and cares about the people he is carrying around. THANK YOU! This was probably one of the best tours I’ve done in NZ so far.
star-5
A great day out.
touristgk2010, Feb 2020
Hobbiton & Rotorua including Wai-O-Tapu - Small Group Tour from Auckland
I really enjoyed this day tour. Hobbiton was even more lovely than I expected and that part of the trip was finished off nicely with a beer in the Green Dragon Inn. The thermal park was really interesting and the small group of ten people was perfect. The chosen lunch place was more than adequate and the scenery on the drive was very impressive.
star-5
Great tour
Guenter S, Nov 2019
Rotorua Highlights Small Group Tour including Wai-O-Tapu from Auckland
We had time enough to see all the attractions at Wai O Tapu. After this I decided to visit Paradise Wild Life Park, also a great experience. Melissa is an excellent tour guide and very helpfully.
star-5
Great
Shawdi_M, Aug 2019
Rotorua Highlights Small Group Tour including Wai-O-Tapu from Auckland
Great tour! Long day. Mike was very knowledgeable and experienced. Would have liked to know beforehand that both tepuia and wai otapo were recommended, rather than told to buy the second attraction the day of the tour
star-4
Great experience!
Siria_R, Mar 2020
Experience Rotorua FullDay Tour Wai-O-Tapu, Rotorua sights & Mitai Maori Village
It was a great experience all in all. The thermal park was great (would’ve liked more time to explore - but that’s how these things go. The Mitai Maori Village experience was exceptional! Well organized and professionally done!! The only thing I was a bit dissatisfied with was the lack of clarity about the times each activity would run. It’s advertised as a “full day” activity which gives the impression that you’ll be doing something all day long. That was was not the case. There’s a big gap between the thermal park and the city snapshot (about 3hrs)- nothing wrong with it, but had I known that I would’ve done things a bit different in order to maximize my time there.
star-5
Great thermal park day!
eftychiat, Feb 2020
Wai-O-Tapu & Waimangu Full Day Tour
Definitely recommend this tour with thermal land shuttle company. The driver Keith was amazing and very knowledgeable. Perfect tour if you want to combine these two parks in the same day.
star-5
Excellent tour
Christopher_O, Jan 2020
Hobbiton & Rotorua including Wai-O-Tapu - Small Group Tour from Auckland
Our tour guides name was Grant. He is a very experience person. Very friendly and good photographer. Our pictures look great !
star-5
Definitely recommend
Navigate15377695053, Jan 2020
Wai-O-Tapu & Waimangu Full Day Tour
I would definitely recommend this tour. The tour guide knows his history of Rotorua. The sites are just amazing and the tour gives you plenty of time to roam around at your own pace. Pick up and drop off to where you are staying also was a bonus.
star-4
Rainy
Angela_C, Sep 2019
Hobbiton & Rotorua including Wai-O-Tapu - Small Group Tour from Auckland
Even with it rainey it was a nice day. Would of liked to h ave ssen the Maori culture show but apparently we were late cause of a wreck and to see the late show would of put us in at 800 pm and our driver didnt want to stay that late. Didnt see the colors of the volcano that it shows on the advertisement. Must see the crafts where people are carving sculptures and weaving.
star-4
Beautiful Rotorua
Elizabeth_P, Mar 2020
Rotorua Highlights Small Group Tour including Wai-O-Tapu from Auckland
We were really well looked after by our tour guide, Grant. He went out of his way to give us a wonderful day and ensure that everyone was happy. Rotorua speaks for itself as it is stunning! Only disappointment was to discover that the availability of wifi meant that we would have to pay extra to actually have it (on a day when we were still trying to be in contact with our travel agent re flights back to the UK because of changes due to the Coronavirus). Paid extra to see the park with the geysers, which was worth it.
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Things to Know Before You Go

  • The park’s visitor facilities include restrooms, lockers, a visitor center, a small café, and picnic areas.

  • This is an active geothermal area, meaning the ground and water often reach boiling temperatures. Don’t be tempted to break the rules or wander outside of designated areas.

  • Wear comfortable closed-toe shoes, bring sun protection, and drink plenty of water.

  • Of the three walking trails at Wai-O-Tapu, only one is accessible for wheelchair users and strollers.

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How to Get There

Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland is located along Waiotapu Loop Road, 17 miles (27 kilometers) south of Rotorua, or 20 minutes by road. The closest international airport is in Rotorua.

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When to Get There

You can visit year-round, but summer (December through February) is the most popular. The park can become very crowded—to avoid large tour groups, visit early in the morning or just before closing.

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Geothermal Attractions of Wai-O-Tapu

Stand in awe before massive craters and the thundering Lake Ngakoro Waterfall, watch as the Lady Knox Geyser erupts, and marvel at multi-colored pools known as the

‘Artist's Palette” for their bright swirls of color—a result of the water’s sulfur content. Additional highlights include the bubbling “Champagne Pool,” a number of cold and hot springs, and elaborate sinter terrace formations.

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Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What are the nearest attractions to Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland?
A:
Attractions near Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland:
Q:
What else should I know about attractions in Rotorua?
A:
As well as visiting the Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland, check out these trip ideas to make the most of your visit: