Rotorua is one of the most visited city in New Zealand. I was quite surprised when I first read this stats, because I actually don’t know what to do there. Anyway before we get to Rotorua, let’s start with Taupo.
Taupo was my destination between Waitomo and Rotorua. It is the gateway to the famous Tongariro National Park and the hike you can do there including the Alpine Crossing. Never once did it cross my mind to do the day-long hike! So taking out the hiking, I didn’t actually know what to do there. There’s Hukafalls Jet, but really at this stage of my travel, I’m not really interested in cruise, jet boat or anything like that anymore.
So I went and try the Lake Taupo Hole in One Challenge, wasted NZD40 for 50 balls but I got a couple of good shots! Then a lovely steak dinner at Grill @ 42 and the next day I played 9 hole golf at Wairakei Resort (really really terrible course, this is the resort, while the Wairakei International is the full 18 holes and said to be one of the best in NZ), visited Wairakei Terraces (don’t go unless you’re going into the spa!) and that’s pretty much it.
You’d have seen my unfortunate experience in Rotorua in Grand Theft (Not) Auto. Truth is, I also struggle to decide what to do there. Perhaps it’s the fatigue that got to me after a couple of weeks. I joined the Tamaki Maori Village Experience which is a night out with the Maori tribe including a dinner. It’s quite interesting but I warn you this is very touristy and there’s tons of people, must be about 100+. The food is so so, but it’s interesting nonetheless to learn more about the Maori way of life.
Rotorua is famous for the geyser, including Wai-O-Tapu which I didn’t go in, and Te Puia. I went to Te Puia and wish I didn’t. Entry ticket was expensive (I think it was NZD50 or over), and there’s really not much to see (I couldn’t be bothered to wait an hour to see the geyser blows).