Blog

Things to do when visiting Rotorua with children


Posted by on


Rotorua is one of New Zealand's TOP tourist destinations with many attractions to keep you and your 'little ones' endlessly entertained. From the land to the lakes and from the earth to the sky, there is something here for everyone. But what if you are only here for a night or two? Or here with the kids? How do you decide what to do?

Luckily we have put together a short list of some of our TOP picks. Check them out below.

Agrodome

In the heart of 350acres of lush farmland, yet only 10 minutes from Rotorua's City Centre, you'll find New Zealand's Agrodome. The Farm Tour is absolutely perfect for children and adults of all ages. With such a wide variety of fun things to see and do out at the Agrodome, it's safe to bet that you and the children will love it.

Rotorua Duck Tours

"You haven't seen Rotorua until you've seen it on a Duck!"

Rotorua Duck Tours is the best way to see and learn about Rotorua by land and water. There are 18 lakes in the Rotorua area surrounded by native New Zealand bush, the most memorable way to see it is by Duck. Jump on board the Duck.. Part car, part boat! Nothing really beats driving straight from the road into the lakes!

Flipout Rotorua

One of Rotorua's newest attraction have arrived and it's amazing! Flip out Rotorua, fun for the whole family! Flipout is a great way to keep the kids endlessly entertained and ready for a BIG night sleep afterwards (hopefully)! The best thing about Flipout is it's perfect for us Adults too! Get a fun work out in while the kids bounce their hearts away. 

Paradise Valley Wildlife Park

Paradise Valley is one of our favourite places to go with the kids. Lions, Trout Pools, Farm Animals, Native Birds.. This place almost has it all! If you come at the right time of year they have little baby lion cubs that you can pat, play with and take a photo with- all under the supervision of their expertly trained staff. Lion feeding is at 2pm daily and we highly recommend watching this... it's awesome!

Amazeme Rotorua

Amazeme is amazing! Not only is there 1.4km of winding hedge to get lost in, there are animals, games and even a BBQ for the whole family to enjoy. Take a seat parents and let the kids go wild! The first time we went out for a visit the Manager made it to the centre in great time while the rest of us raced to the centre (LOL)! Great fun and a great workout for Children and Adults of all ages. An outing with a picnic lunch on a warm day, sounds like the perfect day out to us!

 


Places to see Kiwis in Rotorua and the North Island


Posted by on


As our national icon, the kiwi is a must-see for any traveller to New Zealand. Sadly, these wonderful flightless birds are endangered, threatened by animals that were introduced to the country when it was colonised. The good news is that us Kiwis do love our kiwis, and there are many sanctuaries and conservation projects that have been set up to protect the birds. Currently there’s about 70000 left in the country.

You are more likely to see a kiwi in captivity than in the wild, particularly because they are nocturnal (and shy!). Here are a few places to find kiwis whilst visiting Rotorua and the North Island.

Kiwi

Kiwi Encounter at Rainbow Springs, Rotorua

Rainbow Springs joined the "Operation Nest Egg" breeding programme in 1995 and are now the leading kiwi hatchery in the country. There are “behind the scenes” tours every hour but we recommend keeping your ticket and coming back in the evening to see kiwi in the open air aviary – they come out around 8.30pm.

Kiwi Encounter

Te Puia, Rotorua

There are live kiwis living in the grounds of Te Puia, which also has a breeding programme. Visit the specially lit nocturnal kiwi house to see some of the birds. Once they reach maturity they are moved to the outdoor enclosures to breed.

Otorohanga Kiwi House & Native Bird Park

An hour and half drive from Rotorua and close to the famous Waitomo Glowworm Caves, the Otorohanga Kiwi House is well worth a stop. They have been looking after kiwis since the early 70s. Home to New Zealand’s largest dome aviary, they also have tuataras, a native reptile that pre-dated the dinosaurs. Otorohanga town is also home to a few giant kiwi sculptures!

Zealandia Kiwi - photo by Jo Moore

Zealandia, Wellington

If you make it down to our capital city Wellington, check out Zealandia, an amazing eco-sanctuary that is home to some of NZ’s rarest wildlife. The best time to see kiwi is on a night tour – these depart 30 minutes before sunset and allow you to glimpse kiwi in a natural environment. If you can’t visit at night, kiwis are also kept in captivity at Wellington Zoo.


For a full list of places to see kiwis in New Zealand, check out the website Kiwisforkiwi.org.

Photos courtesy of NewZealand.com, Jo Moore (Zealandia) and iTravelNZ on Flickr.


The Five Best Geothermal Experiences in Rotorua


Posted by on


Rotorua has one of the most concentrated and dramatic geothermal areas in the world - multi-storey high geysers, crazy coloured mineral pools and steam wafting over cauldrons of boiling mud.

Here are our top five geothermal experiences to check out during your stay in Rotorua.

Te Puia Rotorua

Te Puia

For raw power, get up close and personal with the famously huge Pohutu geyser, regularly erupting to 30m! You can walk through yourself or take a guided tour and get that sense of connection with the land and the people. Also the place to come to watch master carvers and weavers at work.

Hells Gate

References to the underworld are everywhere in Rotorua and at Hells Gate you can see why - sulphur and heat combine to form a landscape that is definitely out of this world! Hot waterfalls, steaming craters and seething fumaroles. Have a soak in a mud bath spa - a truly surreal way to unkink your muscles after a hard day's sightseeing.

Waimangu Valley Rotorua

Waimangu Valley

Waimangu Volcanic Valley has won numerous well deserved awards for eco-tourism in New Zealand. It's really unspoilt nature at its best. You can take a short walk or spend the day, either on your own or hire a guide. You can also arrange a boat cruise on beautiful Lake Rotomahana past bizarre steaming cliffs!

Kuirau Park

Kuirau Park

Kuirau Park Geothermal Reserve is free. Like most parks it has beautiful gardens, a duck pond and a playground. An added bonus are the boiling pools of mud, sputtering vents, huffing steam and even a crater lake. Kick off your shoes and soak your feet in one of the hot mineral footpools.

 

Wai-O-Tapu

Wai-O-Tapu is an area of extreme geothermal activity. The walks offer startling views of a whole host of colorful, bubbling, steaming, and stinky attractions. The Champagne Pool is the crown jewel - 260 degrees Celsius (500 F), with shocking oranges and emerald greens, it's a photographer’s dream!


Find out more about what to do and see in Rotorua.

"Best TOP 10 Holiday Park so far! The location is fabulous! Near to the city, and especially near to the Saturday Kuirau morning market, a mere 5 mins walk to the park. Loved the thermal pools (38C and 40C), perfect for a nice soak on a cold winter day."

Read more customer reviews