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Sightseeing in Rotorua - what to see. Complete travel guide

Surrounded by eleven lakes and comfortably nested on Lake Rotorua, the namesake city is a charming tourist destination in New Zealand. The population of Rotorua is roughly seventy-five thousand people. Rotorua is the cradle of Maori culture. Picturesque nature remains one of the biggest attractions of this settlement – Rotorua is situated in an area with numerous geysers and thermal springs. As expected, there are many sanatoriums and spa resorts near such a natural treasure. In recent years, the popularity of Rotorua has been growing. Not only tourists from New Zealand but also guests from many countries in Europe and America enjoy visiting this city.
The first European appeared on the site of the modern thermal springs resort in 1828. Historians assume that this was Phillip Tapsell, a merchant who was trading with the New Zealand town of Maketu. Initially, different Maori tribes were living in Rotorua. The traditions of the indigenous people are cherished and carefully preserved to this day. In 1883, the government of New Zealand decided to establish a spa resort in the unique area. Later, this region got special status. The first railroad was built in Rotorua in 1894.
Thanks to the train that was connecting Rotorua to Oakland, the importance and popularity of the resort area began to grow. More New Zealanders wanted to visit this lake region with numerous healing thermal springs. Rotorua started turning into a famous tourist destination. Many guests wanted to settle in the beautiful area, and so they remained here permanently. This is how a small settlement turned into the town of Rotorua in 1922. The population kept growing year after year. The resort town became famous far beyond the borders of the country, and this fact only helped to develop the region. Rotorua officially received the town status in 1962. Copyright www.orangesmile.com
Would you like to see how ancient Maori lived? There is a small village not far from Rotorua that was always home to the indigenous people. A devastating eruption of Tarawera Volcano happened here in 1886. The village was buried under the layer of ash. Many indigenous people died, and the survivors moved to places that were more suitable for living. Today, the remaining houses have become a fantastic open-air museum created by the natural disaster. Many houses are covered with grass today, and this fact makes them look even more mysterious and attractive. The open-air museum is officially called the Buried Village of Te Wairoa.
A visit to this landmark is a chance to learn more about the life of Maori people in the past. The road to the village is no less beautiful because you will see several fabulous waterfalls along the way. The region near Rotorua is incredibly rich in waterfalls of different sizes. Tarawera Falls is one of the most famous waterfalls in the region. The water is so clean here that it is possible to see how the trout swims in it. In the Buried Village of Te Wairoa, visitors will hear the story of the eruption night and the devastating consequences of the disaster that happened on 10 July 1886. An introduction to the traditional lifestyle of Maori is an essential part of the excursion. Fans of interesting activities will find it exciting to participate in the traditional games of the Maori people.
The Rotorua Museum of Art and History is very popular with tourists. The opening of this cultural establishment took place in 1908. Initially, there was a thermal bathhouse open in this building. Today, the museum offers a collection of household items and the art of Maori people. The museum exhibits several very precious items such as the wooden casing with finely carved details and a figure of a kumara goddess who is giving birth. When the aboriginal village was destroyed, segments of the surviving fence were also brought to the museum.
Besides the historic past of the indigenous people of Rotorua, the museum exhibits artifacts that tell the history of the city and its development. Visitors are even welcome to see a small film about the past of local people and the geothermal springs of this part of New Zealand. The film is only fifteen minutes long but its authors managed to cover all important events in the history of Rotorua including the infamous explosion of Tarawera Volcano. The film is really interesting and skillfully intertwines the mythology and geology.
There is an airport located ten kilometers from the central part of Rotorua. Built near the shore of the namesake lake, this airport receives domestic flights from such cities as Oakland and Queenstown. There are also flights to Christchurch and Wellington. Additionally, there is a port for seaplanes five kilometers to the west from Rotorua. It takes around forty minutes to reach this city from Oakland by air. A flight from Wellington is significantly longer – more than one hour.

City tours, excursions and tickets in Rotorua and surroundings

Reference information
Map of all parks
National and city parks around Rotorua
♥   National Park 'Te Urewera' , 88.9 km from the center. On the map   Photo
♥   National Park 'Tongariro' , 139 km from the center. On the map   Photo

Sights around Rotorua from our guide 'Extreme places on Earth'

Taupo Volcano

From the series “Sleeping Super-Volcanoes Capable of Destroying Whole Regions”
Today while we are looking at the peaceful water of Taupo Lake it is quite hard to image what destroying power hides under it. For about 50 000 years the volcano saves its strength. In case they go on the surface, several continents will be wiped out. Near the supervolcano has placed several popular touristic routes. These places are quite popular with biologists because there you can see some endemic plants and animals. All these thanks to the high volcanic activity. Vice versa once it can kill this natural richness. … Read further

Sightseeing in New Zealand: things to see

Travelers, who are hungry for bustling city life, will find all they need in Auckland. This city is rich in cultural centers, shops, restaurants and many other entertainment facilities. The most famous and visited museums of Auckland are the Museum of Auckland, which exhibits a rich collection of historic artefacts, the National Marine Museum, the Museum of Transport, the Botanic Garden and the Zoo. Kafia and Raglan regions also have the right to be called landmarks of the North Island. These beach areas have become a true mecca for all surfers. There is one more landmark near Kafia - Bridal Veil Falls, tremendously beautiful waterfalls. Travelers are also recommended to visit Te Puia Hot Springs, Te Koutu Park, Te Toto Gorge and Waitomo Caves. … Open
Car rental on OrangeSmile.com Rentals in Rotorua

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Sightseeing in regions nearby Rotorua

All about Rotorua, New Zealand - sightseeings, attractions, touristic spots, architecture, history, culture and cuisine. Prepare your trip together with OrangeSmile.com - find out the 'must see' things in Rotorua, which places to visit, which excursions to take, where the breathtaking views are waiting for you. Planning your trip with this travel guide will help your to get the most out of Rotorua in few days.
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