Mountains

NZ Bush Tip No. 2

Always swim with dolphins in the morning in Kaikoura as this is often the most calm sea condition. A windy day helps for great Albatross viewing.

 
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Bay of Plenty

This region is bordered by the Kaimai and Mamaku Ranges in the west and extends through sparsely populated forest land towards Rotorua, with its bubbling mud pools and geysers. Several spectacular islands grace its coastline - in particular the highly active volcano of Whakaari/White Island.

Must experience:

  • Visit Rotorua, a great place to experience a Maori concert and hangi (feast), as well as to see the mud pools, boiling water and geysers
  • Walk into the moonscape of the active volcano that is White Island
  • Trek to the top of Mount Tarawerea
  • Walk, explore or raft along the stunning Katuna River
  • Drive the 300 km of the beautiful under-populated coastland from Opotiki to Gisborne - a land that time has forgotten. Rural New Zealand at its best, with fantastic avocados and macadamia nuts

Facts at a glance

  • The area was settled around 1000 years ago by Polynesians.
  • The warm, almost tropical climate allows crops like kiwi fruit, avocado and citrus to grow in abundance.
  • The bay was named by James Cook after he noticed the abundant food supplies at several villages there.
  • Walking on White Island is like walking on the moon. Virtually no vegetation survives the harsh acidic environment inside the crater walls. Instead, lush beds of yellow and white sulphur crystals grow amongst hissing, steaming, bubbling fumaroles.

Accommodation

Kawaha Point Lodge is a beautifully appointed lodge offering luxury accommodation, right on the edge of Lake Rotorua
Kawaha Point Lodge is a beautifully appointed lodge offering luxury accommodation, right on the edge of Lake Rotorua

The lodge has been voted by New Zealand Travel USA in the “Top 10 Award Winners“ for accommodation in New Zealand
The lodge has been voted by New Zealand Travel USA in the “Top 10 Award Winners“ for accommodation in New Zealand

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