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RotoruaNew Zealand

Visitors flock to this geothermal site to enjoy its hot springs, mud pools, watersports and fascinating Maori culture.

Rotorua, which sits squarely on the Volcanic Plateau and the Pacific Rim of Fire, is built over one of the world’s geothermal hotspots. Large numbers of visitors come to Rotorua every year for its numerous geothermal attractions, as well as its Maori cultural heritage and wide choice of adventure sports.

The city sits on the shore of Rotorua Lake in the Bay of Plenty area on New Zealand’s North Island. The area is well known for trout fishing and boating opportunities. Rent fishing equipment or enquire about local tour operators in town.

Many of the famous hot springs, colorful crater lakes and bubbling pools are located in parks and reserves such as Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland. Soak in a geothermal mud bath, marvel at geysers erupting almost 100 feet (30 meters) into the air, and take a scenic flight to nearby White Island, the country’s only active marine volcano.

Make time for a visit to The Buried Village. It was covered with ash when adjacent Mount Tarawera erupted in 1886. Today, the site has a museum, nature trail and teahouse. Nearby Rainbow Springs Nature Park has beautifully sculptured ponds filed with fish. See Kiwi birds and other creatures native to New Zealand.

Discover the culture of the Te Arawa people, who settled in the area more than 600 years ago. At Tamaki Maori Village, see how villagers used the hot springs to bathe and do laundry. Try a hangi feast, which is cooked by steaming the food in the ground, and watch performances of Maori songs and war dance.

Adventure seekers will find plenty of things to do in Rotorua. Try skydiving, mountain biking, whitewater rafting or zorbing. Activites are organised by various operators around the city. In winter, head for the North Island’s ski slopes, easily accessed via Rotorua’s international airport.

Where to stay in Rotorua

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Fenton Street

4/5Very Good!(90 area reviews)

One reason travelers love spending time in Fenton Street is the luxurious spas, and Whakarewarewa Hot Springs is a top place to visit.

Fenton Street

Top Hotels in Rotorua

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
Rydges Rotorua
Rydges Rotorua
4 out of 5
272 Fenton St, Rotorua
Free CancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is ¥10,350 per night

Located in Fenton Street, this luxury hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Racing Rotorua and Polynesian Spa. Whakarewarewa Hot Springs and Rotorua Central Mall are ...

3.6/5Good! (989 reviews)

"I liked the spacious room. The food was okay. I enjoyed taking a pa in the tub. It was quiet for the most part."…"

Reviewed on Jun 7, 2020

Rydges Rotorua
Novotel Rotorua Lakeside
Novotel Rotorua Lakeside
4.5 out of 5
9-11 Tutanekai St, P O Box 348, Rotorua
The price is ¥10,711 per night

This family-friendly Rotorua hotel is located in a shopping district, within a 15-minute walk of Matariki Hangi & Maori Cultural Performance and Polynesian Spa. ...

4.1/5Very Good! (992 reviews)

"enjoyed the stay and the place was clean. the only thing that was hard was the amount of parking there was but all full so had to park on road. food was great for breakfast and everything went well"…"

Reviewed on Jul 5, 2020

Novotel Rotorua Lakeside
Lake Rotorua Hotel
Lake Rotorua Hotel
4 out of 5
131 Lake Road, Koutu, Rotorua
The price is ¥6,886 per night

Situated in the suburbs, this motel is within 2 mi (3 km) of Rotorua Hospital, Tamaki Maori Village, and Rotorua Central Mall. Skyline Rotorua and Polynesian ...

3.8/5Good! (813 reviews)

"Great pool facilities to cool off on a hot summer's day. Very handy to all the tourist activities around Rotorua."…"

Reviewed on Mar 17, 2020

Lake Rotorua Hotel

Popular places to visit in Rotorua

Lake Rotorua
Image for Lake Rotorua

Lake Rotorua

4.5/5(150 reviews)

One of the largest lakes on the North Island, this location offers an abundance of exciting activities as well as a fascinating geological and cultural history.

Lake Rotoiti
Image for Lake Rotoiti

Lake Rotoiti

4.5/5(20 reviews)

Marvel at the pristine Nelson Lakes National Park as you kayak across this magnificent lake to thermal pools and glow worm caves. 

Polynesian Spa
Image for Polynesian Spa

Polynesian Spa

4.5/5(40 reviews)

Set among the serene Government Gardens on the shores of Lake Rotorua, these hot pools are an idyllic place to relax and unwind.

Skyline Rotorua
Image for Skyline Rotorua

Skyline Rotorua

4.5/5(58 reviews)

Take in the splendid scenery during a gondola ride and jump in a luge cart to navigate your way down the exciting mountain track.

Lake Okareka
Image for Lake Okareka

Lake Okareka

4.5/5(7 reviews)

Explore the great outdoors at Lake Okareka, a lovely green space in Lake Okareka. Stroll along the lakeside or visit the spas in this relaxing area.

Mitai Maori Village
Image for Mitai Maori Village

Mitai Maori Village

4.5/5(48 reviews)

For a great insight into Māori customs and way of life, sign up for this magical, entertaining and educational cultural experience.

Top things to do in Rotorua

Tamaki Maori Village Cultural Discovery & Hangi Feast
Image for Tamaki Maori Village Cultural Discovery & Hangi Feast

Tamaki Maori Village Cultural Discovery & Hangi Feast

¥8,267
Per adult
94% of travellers recommend
Tauranga Cruise Excursion - Rotorua & Te Puia Tour
Image for Tauranga Cruise Excursion - Rotorua & Te Puia Tour

Tauranga Cruise Excursion - Rotorua & Te Puia Tour

¥11,773
Per adult
98% of travellers recommend
Eco Thermal Park Tour
Image for Eco Thermal Park Tour

Eco Thermal Park Tour

¥11,146
Per adult
94% of travellers recommend
Rotorua Tour from Auckland with Optional Extras
Image for Rotorua Tour from Auckland with Optional Extras

Rotorua Tour from Auckland with Optional Extras

¥19,780
Per adult
88% of travellers recommend
Hobbiton Movie Set & Waitomo Glowworm Caves:Rotorua day Tour
Image for Hobbiton Movie Set & Waitomo Glowworm Caves:Rotorua day Tour

Hobbiton Movie Set & Waitomo Glowworm Caves:Rotorua day Tour

¥26,124
Per adult
90% of travellers recommend
Geothermal Lakeside Bathing Experience - Deluxe Lake Spa
Image for Geothermal Lakeside Bathing Experience - Deluxe Lake Spa

Geothermal Lakeside Bathing Experience - Deluxe Lake Spa

¥3,923
Per adult
80% of travellers recommend

Reviews of Rotorua

4.5

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
112
5 - Excellent 54.106280193236714%
4 - Good
83
4 - Good 40.09661835748792%
3 - Okay
11
3 - Okay 5.314009661835748%
2 - Disappointing
0
2 - Disappointing 0%
1 - Terrible
1
1 - Terrible 0.4830917874396135%

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Mar 5, 2020

Such a neat town, so much to do and see. Tons of food options and activities Highly recommend

4/5 - Good

Verified traveler

Jan 30, 2020

Saw lots of vacant buildings, seems a bit depressed. Really enjoyed activities in the area, especially the luge.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Jan 27, 2020

Great spot to visit the geothermal pools, redwoods, lakes and enjoy the local scenery. Good options for eateries (Thursday night was local food street festival!!) and related items.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Dec 10, 2019

Very quiet place, but plenty of attractions to choose from.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Dec 1, 2019

Not many dining options and most close early in off season

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Nov 26, 2019

Rotorua was amazing! Must go!

Cities near Rotorua

Lake Tarawera featuring a beach as well as a small group of people

Lake Tarawera

Mitai Maori Village

Kawaha Point

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