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Rotorua RECOMMENDATIONS See all

Best Day Trips From Rotorua

By Viator, April 2014

5 1 Reviews | Add your review

Situated smack in the center of the expansive North Island, the city of Rotorua is known for its natural hot springs, Maori culture, and constant odor of pungent sulfur. Though Rotorua is one of the most popular North Island destinations for the attractions within the city, it’s also a popular destination since it’s centrally located to numerous North Island sights. All of the best day trips from Rotorua are located within a two  hour drive from the city, and over the course of a single day you can reach anywhere from the surfboard-lined shoreline of Mt. Maunganui to a glowworm-filled day trip to Waitomo Caves.

Most visitors, however, prefer day trips from Rotorua which stay closer to the city center and explore the geothermal marvels ringing the city. On day trips to the Wai-O-Topu Geothermal Wonderland, travelers can learn all about the eruption of nearby Mt. Tarawera as well as amble around pools of boiling mud and watch the Lady Knox geyser shoot skyward on command.

Or, at only an hour away, one of the best day trips from Rotorua is heading south to Lake Taupo for everything from skydiving and sailing to jet boating and rafting. At night, head back to Rotorua for a Maori cultural performance to immerse yourself in the fiery culture which is native to this southwestern corner of Polynesia. Rotorua boasts one of the highest percentages of Maori populations found anywhere in New Zealand, and the cultural authenticity and ties to the land are evident to all travelers who pass through the city.

Contributed by Kyle Ellison

Tours & Tickets

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Waitomo Caves and 'The Lord of the Rings' Hobbiton Movie Set Day Trip from Auckland

4.5 star rating: Recommended 61 Reviews

See two magical places come to life on this day tour from Auckland. First explore the Waitomo Glowworm Caves and be entranced by the thousands of twinkling ...  Read more

Location: Auckland, New Zealand
Duration: 12 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $289.08

Waitomo Caves and Rotorua Day Trip from Auckland

4.5 star rating: Recommended 170 Reviews

See all the highlights of the Waitomo Caves and Rotorua in one day. You'll take a guided tour of Waitomo Caves stalactites and glowworms, and see Rotorua's ...  Read more

Location: Auckland, New Zealand
Duration: 13 hours (approx.)

From USD $259.21

'Lord of the Rings' Hobbiton Movie Set Tour

4.5 star rating: Recommended 25 Reviews

Lord of the Rings trilogy fans – return to the lands of Middle-earth and the Shire on this fascinating half-day tour of the Hobbiton Movie Set from Rotorua. ...  Read more

Location: Rotorua, New Zealand
Duration: 4 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $96.65

Active Volcano Helicopter Landings from Rotorua

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 10 Reviews

Imagine taking a helicopter flight over an active volcano.... Here is your chance to do just that on a helicopter tour from Rotorua. You'll spot marine life ...  Read more

Location: Rotorua, New Zealand
Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $733.68

Rotorua to Auckland via Waitomo Glowworm Caves One-Way Tour

4 star rating: Recommended 4 Reviews

Depart Rotorua in the morning and travel over the scenic Mamaku Ranges as the tour heads west to Waitomo. As you leave Rotorua, the coach will travel through ...  Read more

Location: Rotorua, concludes Auckland, New Zealand
Duration: 7 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $202.97

Rotorua Eco Thermal Small Group Morning Tour

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 39 Reviews

Take a unique half-day journey through Rotorua's geothermal parks on a morning trip led by a local naturalist guide. You'll watch the Lady Knox Geyser erupt ...  Read more

Location: Rotorua, New Zealand
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $127.41

Waitomo Glowworm Caves Discovery Tour from Rotorua

3 star rating: Worth doing 5 Reviews

Explore the mystical Waitomo Glowworm Caves, discover the galleries and lofty chambers and take a boat ride through the Glowworm grotto – lit up by thousands ...  Read more

Location: Rotorua, New Zealand
Duration: 6 hours (approx.)

From USD $202.09

Cave Tubing at Waitomo Caves

Want to up the ante when it comes to inner tubing? Now you can float along a subterranean river in the Waitomo Caves! Thousands of glowworms flicker on the ...  Read more

Location: Waitomo, New Zealand
Duration: 2 hours (approx.)

From USD $122.13

Waitomo Glowworm Tour at Footwhistle Cave

Experience a glowworm light show among the fantastical rock formations of Footwhistle cave, an extensive cave system in Waitomo. Glowworms create a starry glow ...  Read more

Location: Waitomo, New Zealand
Duration: 60 minutes (approx.)

From USD $48.33

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