New Zealand – Rotorua (geothermal parks)

This is one of the most popular towns visitors like to go. There is quite a number of iconic attractions here. You can take a day trip to Hobbiton, which is where the movie “The Hobbit” is filmed and you can see all the hobbit houses and watermill. Rotorua is also known for it’s geothermal activity and here you can see geysers, bubbling mud, volcanic craters, colourful lakes due to volcanic minerals. You can also engage in a Maori cultural performance and admire their wood sculptures. There is also a redwood forest with very tall redwood trees and you can go on a treetop walk. I also did the Ogo, where you go into a gigantic plastic ball and roll down the hill. You can also do the gondola in Rotorua…

I went to see the geysers and geothermal parks. I went to Tepuia and Wai-o-tapu. Tepuia has the geyser, they show you how hangi, a traditional Maori dinner, is prepared by using the heat generated from the geothermal activities. They have a kiwi enclosure. And I feel that the highlight of these place is the Maori cultural performance, where you see their traditional welcoming ceremony of a guest, songs, dance, games and also martial arts. You can get to Tepuia with public bus.

Wai-o-tapu has a few more geothermal features, like bubbling mud, orange and green lake, volcanic craters and lotsa of other things! If you dont drive, you will have to book a shuttle to Wai-o-tapu, you can google this online or just ask at the i-site. The shuttle includes the tickets too 🙂

Here’re photos of Te Puia first

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the geyser

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bubbling mud

 

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the hangi, where the maori cooked their food using the geothermal heat

 

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the traditional Maori huts

 

 

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the Maori traditional village

 

 

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the Maori traditional huts

Then I went for the Maori Cultural Performance… It was really awesome, there was a traditional ceremony where they welcome visitors into their village, songs, dance, martial arts and games! the whole show is 45minutes long, and my pictures and videos are just capture 2 small snippets of the show… It was really cool… you should really do this…

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the welcoming ceremony of visitors, like us, into the village
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traditional Maori wood carvings

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And there are so many other spectacular and exquisite wood carvings that you can see when you’re there! It’s awe-inspiring…

 

 

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Te Puia
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Te Puia

 

Anyway, by the time I finished touring Te Puia it was 1pm, and I still had the whole afternoon, so I booked a trip to Wai-O-Tapu, another one of the places with really interesting geothermal features, like colourful volcanic lakes and volcanic craters and bubbling mud pool.

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bubbling mud pool

 

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exploding mud

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volcanic crater

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