Exploring Taupo: Top Things to See and Do

Lake Taupo during a summer day

Lake Taupo, a massive water-filled crater formed almost 27,000 years ago as a result of an immense volcanic blast, is situated more or less right in the North Island’s centre. This lake, one of the largest in Australasia, is a scenic and adventure-filled area that backpackers from all over the world visit each year.

Getting there is easy, as it is just an hour’s drive from Rotorua and a three-hour drive from Auckland if you hire a van or a car. Get help from Metropolitan Rentals and other top names in the vehicle rental scene in the area.

If you are planning to explore this beautiful place in Taupo town, here some of the top spots and activities you should not miss:

Huka Falls

The Waikato, the longest river in New Zealand, originates from Lake Taupo. Just a 30-minute scenic walk from the town centre and you can see the narrow rift where the mighty river drops into a grand busting pool. From there, you could see waterfalls where the water is crystal clear and vivid blue, particularly on sunny days.


Taupo is known as the ‘skydiving capital of the world’ so if you are looking for an exhilarating adventure, this is the place to be. Dive back down to earth with the views of the vast Lake Taupo and Tongariro National Park.

Fish for Trout

You can find the ‘Trout Fishing Capital of the World’ at Turangi, Lake Taupo’s southern end. Do note that you should have a licence to fish for trout. If you are fishing on your own, get a licence first or you might have to pay a costly fine if you get caught.

Craters of the Moon and Wairakei Geothermal Power Project

In Taupo’s northern end, you will see majestic national wonders just several minutes away from each other; hissing steam and boiling mud from the Wairakei power station, as well as the vivid blue and clear waters of the Waikato River. You could likewise see Taupo’s top geothermal attraction, the Orakei Korako.

As one of the most popular backpacker destinations in North Island, Taupo offers great experiences and memories to every visitor. From chilling in cafes, to bike trails, water activities, skydiving and day hikes, you will not have a hard time finding something interesting to visit and do in Taupo.