Best known as a geothermal wonderland and rich in cultural heritage, Rotorua is a place you’ll want to explore. It’s situated 230 kilometres from Auckland, 105 kilometres from Hamilton, and just 60 kilometres from Tauranga. So, regardless of where you begin your journey, make the most of your rental car by taking a drive to beautiful Rotorua.
You'll be surrounded by 18 Lakes, so don't forget to pack the fishing rod, camping gear, and swimmers into your rental car before embarking on your journey. Take a drive to Lake Tikitapu, also known as Blue Lake by the locals. Located on Tarawera Road, you can take a swim in the blue waters, or walk along the five-kilometre walking trail through native bushland. It’s also a great spot for fishing with its vast population of wild rainbow trout.
Sticking to the watery theme, Lake Okareka is another great recreational lake for your enjoyment. This is one of the few lakes in Rotorua with a campsite by the lake, and at just $10 per adult and $5 per child a night, its a great option for affordable camping.
Accessible by boat is Te Rata Bay in Lake Tarawera. Like many places in New Zealand, it has an alternative name, which is Hot Water Beach. It also has a water taxi service.
Enjoy a swim on these geothermal beaches, or cook food in the thermal sands. That's right, you read that correctly. Cook!
Te Rata Bay—or Hot Water Beach—has a campsite with prices similar to Lake Okareka, allowing you to stay at this amazing geothermal paradise. If you'd like to try the refreshing thermal waters without taking a water taxi, drive your rental car 33 kilometres from Rotorua to Kerosene Creek in the Kaingaroa Forest. Here, you’ll find a natural hot spring set in native bushland with a two-metre waterfall.
Once you've enjoyed fishing, swimming, and walking, head back to the city of Rotorua and relax amongst the lively community. Kuirau Park—just off Ranolf Street—is the only public geothermal park in New Zealand. Treat yourself to the free thermal foot baths and soak your feet.
If you're lucky enough to be there on a Saturday, Rotorua organises a community market between 7am and 1pm every week. There’s also the Thursday night markets held in Tutanekai Street from 5pm to 9pm every week. Come along and immerse yourself in the community atmosphere, arts, crafts, ethnic cuisine, and live music.
So what are you waiting for? Book your rental car with VroomVroomVroom today and get ready to experience this majestic New Zealand paradise.