A unique history, interwoven with legends and stories from a time past, has formed the identity of the remarkable Great Lake Taupō region. Many of the stories and customs of the Ngāti Tūwharetoa iwi (tribe) relate to the stunning natural environment and its fascinating historical landmarks. Lake Taupō is considered to be the heart of the North Island. To the south of Lake Taupō lie the majestic volcanic peaks of Tongariro National Park, themselves carrying legends from long ago. Visitors are drawn to the region’s geothermal hot pools, beautiful secluded bays and world class tourist activities like jet boating, skydiving, white water rafting, bungy jumping and scenic boat cruises. The region is also home to excellent hiking, cycling and mountain biking trails. Find out more at GreatLakeTaupo.com

Major Centres: 



Taupō Domestic Airport

Backyard Tours

+64 22 314 2656

Your journey begins with our unique Māori cultural experience as we share our local knowledge & stories with you as we transport you by shuttle to New Zealand’s BEST one day trek, the “Tongariro Alpine Crossing”. Complimentary photography, walking poles and refreshment is offered. Backyard Tours provides passenger transport in and around Turangi, Tongariro Alpine Crossing, Central Plateau Whakapapa, Tongariro National Park, Taupo, Rotorua, or at your request.

Chris Jolly Outdoors is introducing the first experience of its kind this summer on Lake Taupo! Taurikura Māori Cultural Experience aboard Cruise Cat is the creation of Atera and Henare Pitiroi, working together with the students of the local Te Kura Kaupapa. They have created an educational interactive cultural experience for guests to learn to work the poi, play traditional Māori games, sample Rewana bread and even get their own washable moko. As the boat cruises on Lake Taupo, guests will hear the songs and learn the history and stories of the Tuwharetoa people.

Hukafalls Jet

0800 485 253

Operating on this stretch of the river since 1990, Hukafalls Jet has an outstanding record of professionalism and safety. The half hour of thrills, fun and excitement takes you along a beautiful river environment, lined with native bush, sheer rock cliff face and natural hot springs. Combine 360° spins and passing nature by incredibly close at disorientating speeds for an amazing must-do visitor experience, before even reaching the awe inspiring majesty that is the Huka Falls. From the unique vantage point on the jet boat you have the best water level view of Huka Falls.

Native Xperience

+64 27 5566 071

From the novice to the most expert fisherman, our native tour guides will take you to some of the most natural settings on the Waitahanui River. Our guides can take you to the upper reaches of the river, which offers the chance for anglers to get away from the crowds and fish in solitude in a beautiful tranquil setting. If you are not a fishing enthusiast then not to worry as Native Xperience has a variety of other activities that you can enjoy including bush walks, making Māori rongoa (medicine), Māori arts & crafts or even make your own hangi.

Rafting New Zealand

+64 7 368 0352

Experience the Best Rafting Adventures in Aotearoa, New Zealand with Rafting New Zealand (RNZ) - New Zealand's most awarded rafting company. A family run business established in 1991, RNZ prides itself on it's fun, friendly award winning service and impeccable safety record.With an all "Kiwi" professional guide team, Māori culture, the best raft base facilities and awesome whitewater rivers - a rafting adventure with RNZ is not to be missed! We raft daily, providing rafting adventures for all ages, abilities and expectations. Experience the thrill of rafting - Aotearoa styles!

The Haka Shop

+64 27 768 5616

PO Box 1159
Taupō 3351

Embark on an awe-inspiring journey with us as we welcome you into the Māori world. Experiencing another culture can be interesting and informative but we want to leave you excited, impressed and satisfied you chose to experience our style. We express ourselves so that you can feel our ihi - our magnetism. It is our pleasure to entertain and entice your senses in a way that is educational, informative and enlivening. We are in the business of haka and haka resources. We can provide a mobile service for your special occasion or conference to welcome you and your guests to an event in our region.

Wairakei Terraces Thermal Health Spa

+64 7 378 0913

At the turn of last century, visitors worldwide travelled to Wairakei to ‘take the waters’, testifying to their “curative properties” and “therapeutic effects”. Today a series of pools have been developed, strategically positioned below silica terraces and waterfalls with temperatures ranging between 42 and 36 degrees. Taking advantage of geothermal water that is drawn to the earth’s surface from 1.5 kilometres underground, these mineral enriched pools will warm your body to the core while nourishing and moisturising your skin. This natural outdoor setting is perfect for complete rest and relaxation and an extremely appealing experience for anyone wanting to indulge in something unique

Wairakei Terraces Walkway and Māori Cultural Experience

+64 7 378 0913

Wairakei Terraces will entertain and educate, leaving you in awe of nature’s capacity to be fashioned yet still retaining a naturalness that is pleasing to the eye as well as the senses. A guided or self-tour incorporates features of geothermal and Māori cultural interest, notably carvings that depict the history of New Zealand and Māori, and the first ever man-made silica terraces reminiscent of the iconic pink and white versions of Tarawera. Experience the very cornerstone of Māori custom and culture. Begin a journey into the mysterious world of our Māori people and participate in a traditional welcome, a guided terraces tour which includes demonstrations of traditional Māori art and craft, a traditional ‘Hangi’ meal, and a spectacular performance of song, dance and haka.

Art Retail
Guided Tour

© 2018 NZ Maori Tourism Society