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Rotorua in New Zealand: Our tips for 3 days

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The small, laid-back town of Rotorua is one of the most popular travel destinations on New Zealand’s North Island. The reason: Rotorua is located in the middle of one of the most famous and largest geothermal areas in the world. Everywhere it is bubbling and steaming from the earth and the smell of sulfur is omnipresent in Rotorua.

Personally, we were less impressed by the city of Rotorua than by the surrounding area, hence our first tip: Rotorua is ideal for one or two excursions. Some of the most famous sights on New Zealand’s North Island are easily accessible from Rotorua.

What you at exactly expected on a trip to Rotorua, we will show you in this blog article. We will tell you about our highlights and reveal our personal tips for your trip.

1. Rotorua: The geothermal area at a glance We spontaneously associate Rotorua with one thing: Sulphur! Or rather the smell of sulphur. It can sometimes be smelled more, sometimes less, but somehow it’s always in the air. And not without reason, of course: Rotorua is located in an area with pronounced geothermal activity.

Geysers, hot springs & mud pools: If you have never been to a real thermal area before, he’ll be pretty excited. The whole thing is not only an extremely colorful, but also an intensely scented spectacle. Around Rotorua there are several thermal parks, in which a large number of different geothermal Highlights.

How many days should I plan for Rotorua? We ourselves stayed three nights in Rotorua and found this period to be ideal. So we had two full days, which we each used for a day trip. Nevertheless, there was enough time to explore the center of Rotorua a little.

Tip: Travel Guide for New Zealand We have already tested several travel guides for New Zealand. Our personal favorite is the Stefan Loose Travel Guide New Zealand. As usual from Stefan Loose, the travel guide has done excellent research and has great tips ready. For us it offers the best value for money.

2. Sights & Highlights around Rotorua Hobbiton: On the road in the Shire Let’s start with an absolute classic in the area around Rotorua: the Filming location of the Hobbit scenes from Lord of the Rings. That’s right, the world-famous film set can be visited. Yes, the price for the tour is damn high, yes of course it’s touristy there! These are things you have to be prepared for, that’s clear.

Nevertheless: We were pretty excited. It is simply impressive to be in the place where the famous film scenes were filmed. Now, whenever we see a Lord of the Rings or The Hobbit movie, we’re delighted and look back fondly on our trip there.

The filming location is visited as part of a Approximately 2-hour tour. These start at the so-called “Shire’s Rest”, which is about an hour’s drive from Rotorua. During the tour you will see, among other things, the Hobbit houses, which, however – small spoiler – are unfurnished. The interior shots were shot in the studio. The tour ends at the Green Dragon where you get a drink (included in the price).

Link to official website: Hobbiton Movie Tours

Wai-O-Tapu: The most famous thermal park around Rotorua No less touristy, but scenically gigantic, is the Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland, located about half an hour’s drive from downtown Rotorua. The name is program. It is a vast expanse of geothermal activity. The area is dotted with brightly colored lakes, bubbling mud pools and steaming waters.

The ticket (32,5 NZD) also entitles you to visit the Lady Knox Geyser, which opens daily at 10: 15 is artificially erupted in the morning. Dozens of tourists gather there who do not want to miss this spectacle. But we don’t need to talk, we were right in the middle of it.

We continue to the actual highlight, the circular path through the geothermal area. We chose the longest route, which takes about 1.5 hours and covers the entire area. A highlight is definitely the Champagne Pool,, which is particularly noticeable because of the partly strong orange color and the smell that prevails there.

But that too The rest of the area, some of which is very colorful, is very impressive. By the way, on the way back by car you can stop at the Mudpool, a mud pond, which is a little off the beaten path and lives up to its name.

Link to official website: Wai-O-Tapu

Central Rotorua As already mentioned: The town of Rotorua itself is rather unexciting. Its center is walked within a few hours. Above all, Lake Rotorua is worth seeing. Here runs a promenade, which we found quite nice. You can also rent a boat or kayak here and sail across the lake.

We noticed that there were very few people on the streets. We don’t know why that was. The weather was a bit rainy, but that can’t have been the only reason. In general, we remember Rotorua as being rather extinct, even though we were traveling in the middle of the high season.

3. Hotel tip for Rotorua For overnight stays we can recommend the Quest Rotorua. This modern apartment hotel is very centrally located. From the hotel you can, for example, easily reach Lake Rotorua in 15 minutes walk. There are also many nice cafes and restaurants around the hotel.

The spacious rooms are comfortably furnished with everything you need. (It even has a small kitchen and its own washing machine.) The beds are also very comfortable.

Our summary: An ideal hotel for all those who would like to stay in the center of Rotorua. The price-performance ratio is great and you feel very comfortable.

You can book the hotel here: Quest Rotorua 4 . More New Zealand travel reports from us All New Zealand items at a glanceOur itinerary through New ZealandNew Zealand Travel Tips Transparency: Affiliate Links This blog article contains our personal recommendations in the form from so-called affiliate links. If you book or buy something through the links, we will receive a small commission. For you, this does not change the price at all. Great thing, isn’t it? A thousand thanks from both of us!25959

Have you ever been to Rotorua in New Zealand and do you have any other tips or testimonials? We look forward to your comment!25959