If there is one place that no visitor to New Zealand should miss, it is Rotorua. With the scent of sulphur in the air you can stand upon active volcanoes and peer into massive steaming craters, see bubbling cauldrons spit out mud and exploding Geysers spout 50 ft or more into the air, soak in a mineral hot pool and enjoy unspoiled native forests.
Rotorua fascinates as the heartland of New Zealand Maori culture. Visit a replica village and attend a song and dance performance before taking part in a traditional hangi dinner where food is steamed in an earth oven. Compliment these activities by learning more at the Rotorua Museum and Maori Arts and Crafts Institute at Te Puia.
Nature lovers can get up close and personal with New Zealand farm life and wander through magnificent wetland areas and see trout in a natural sanctuary. Visit the Kiwi Encounter to see “conservation in action”. Visitors have the unique chance to see where specialised husbandry staff carrying out incubation, hatching and raising of kiwi chicks for release back into the wild. The guided tour includes a modern, open plan nocturnal area (home to captive kiwi) and predator proof outdoor enclosures. Comprehensive and dynamic visual displays help to create an understanding of the complexities of New Zealand’s national icon, their current plight in the wild in New Zealand and conservation efforts to preserve them.
Those who prefer a wilder experience can try out some water-based activities like kayaking, or white-water rafting.
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