In the centre of the North Island of New Zealand is Lake Taupo, and on its northern shore is the town of Taupo.
Boating and trout fishing are popular activities in Taupo, and the Taupo Lake provides a lovely backdrop to land activities. Out on the Lake, accessible only by water, are the iconic Maori Rock Carvings. Take a cruise out to see these, or a sail boat. The Waikato River empties from Lake Taupo at Tapuaeharuru Bay, near the Marina, and continues down meandering until it reaches the dramatic Huka Falls, another photographic gem. Jetboat trips to these Falls are very popular.
Kids & Family
Take the kids to The Craters of the Moon for a wander around the steam vents and craters. Then, to teach them a little about what they have seen, in a fun way, take a visit to the Volcanic Activity Centre. Here kids get interactive with the displays, and get to watch a live geyser model and live through an earthquake simulation.
Souvenir shops in Taupo are generally clustered on the main road, but it is worth having a wander through the town to see the Statues that are located at strategic points. Look for the statue of The Great Clock of Tia (the full name of Taupo) across the SH1 near the Visitors Centre. Nearby is the beautiful Heartland statue.
A geothermal area handy to Taupo is Orakei Korako. The best of silica formations, and an amazing deep cave opening that offers photo opportunities. If you want to see mountains head down to the Tongariro National Park, where Mt Ruapehu, Mt Tongariro, and Mt Ngauruhoe loom over the landscape. Ruapehu has skiing available in season. Another interesting place is Waiouru, an Army base town that has the most amazing Army Museum – totally recommended.