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But if you donât mind travelling the 80 km and are looking for an adventure thatâs off the beaten path, we highly recommend walking the Tarawera Falls Track. Hiking Trails The area around the Tarawera Lake has several hiking trails that lead to the top of Mount Tarawera. If you like hiking and you love free hot pools to bathe in along the way, this is one for you! Mount Tarawera is a volcano on the outskirts of Rotorua. The Tarawera Trail is a one-way hike … Mountain Biking Taupo: Great Lake Trail - Should you do it? Mt Tarawera offers a wide range of activities and attractions for tourists. Added to this is the magical conclusion of a relaxing geothermal soak at Hot … Follow winding hiking trails from the base of Mt Tarawera … The drive to the start of the walk takes about an hour and the last part of it is via a 4WD road. They pick us up from our hotel and together with another couple, we take on the private 4WD track to the start of the walk. If youâre interested to find out more,Â The Buried VillageÂ website has a timeline of the events leading up to and post the eruption. Mount Tarawera New Zealand is a famous landmark and sacred Māori volcano, located south east of Rotorua, New Zealand. Why? The only way to access Mount Tarawera is by joining Kaitiaki Adventureâs tour. Natureâs palette of reds, oranges, greens, browns and greys on this battle-scarred mountain is simply breathtaking. The much smaller falcons swooped and dive bombed the interloper several times until eventually it got the hint and headed off into the distance. The plane launched from the water and … The hiking track up the mountain is for the reasonably fit only, others can take the option of a … ...that wallabies live on Mount Tarawera? Fast forward to June 2016 and we were back in Rotorua on a perfectly clear and crisp winterâs morning to climb what, from a distance, appeared to be a very unassuming mountain. âWell that was odd.â said Karl. There are some companies that land by helicopter at the crater’s edge, but I preferred the chance to do a hike … Vs. what the view couldâve looked like. This article compares all of the geothermal parks in Rotorua to help you find the right one. Infamous for its 1886 eruption, Mount Tarawera is entrenched in Maori myths & legend, and is revered by the Iwi of Rangitihi, who hold the mana whenua of the mountain. On the horizon, almost 100 km away, we could just make out White Island, a not so restlessly sleeping volcano, something we knew first hand having visited the island a few months previously. The views he describes sound amazing. Back in the Land Cruiser we headed up the track for another 2 km past what was left of a disused airstrip, built by the American Army for training many decades before. Itâs much shorter than the crossing, guided but looks just as outer-worldly as the landscape in Tongariro National Park. A group on the tarawera crater walk on a sunny day (pic courtesy of Kaitiaki Adventures). Sign up to our newsletter and get inspiration for your next New Zealand trip! Mt Tarawera is a mountain and weather can change quickly. This all happened in a matter of seconds and we just stood there, glued to the spot in total amazement. Experience the history and unique landscape that is Mount Tarawera. Nowadays, the sleepy mountain and its lake serve as a getaway for people looking to hike or … We are living and working in Auckland but in our spare time you can often find us discovering beautiful New Zealand (also known by its Maori name Aotearoa). By this time, a breeze had come up so we headed down the slope a short way to a large rock cairn that doubled as a picnic bench. What an incredible experience, a definite mustÂdo when visiting Rotorua. Hike … ... Mount Tarawera… The whole tour, including transfers from and to Rotorua, takes about 4 hours. Steve the guide skips past me like a wallaby while I run towards the bottom too, but more carefully. Experience the majesty of Mt Tarawera and gain insight into New Zealand’s rich geology on this 4-hour hike from Rotorua. Throughout the day, your guide will share the history of Mount Tarawera's eruption as well as local myths and legends. Tarawera Crater Walk is also a great alternative to the Tongariro Crossing. We are stuck in a massive rain cloud that just doesnât want to move away and show us the usually amazing view over Rotorua and all the way to Bay of Plenty and White Island. Despite our little âeventâ, we had an amazing day with Karl as our guide. Horses to suit all abilities, with guided treks from 30 minutes to three hours. Starting at the Buried Village, the trail takes you around and through to Hot Water Beach, where you can bathe in the hot spring water on the edges of Lake Tarawera before taking a water taxi back to the start with Totally Tarawera . Steve performed a Maori blessing, thanking the spirits of Maori chiefs who inhabit Mt Tarawera for letting us visit their grounds and asking for a safe walk. The weather in Rotorua already looked gloomy but up on Mt Tarawera, itâs worse. More by chance than anything else, we’d chosen to do the Mount Tarawera hike almost 130 years to the day that the mountain last erupted. Tarawera, Rotorua: See 127 reviews, articles, and 79 photos of Mt. Looking for more ideas on things to do and places to see when visiting the Rotorua region? It can get quite bumpy, for those who are affected by motion sickness. Plan your NZ trip with me!Let me help you organise your New Zealand holiday! But if youâre short on time and have to choose only a few activities, doing the Mount Tarawera hike withÂ Kaitiaki AdventuresÂ has got to be top of your list. It was pretty cosy, with Debs squeezed in the middle, but Karl didnât seem to mind as we headed south on the 40 km drive to the base of the mountain. Tarawera Trail. âNeed a hand mate?â he asked. As we drove, Karl told us stories of his âwilderâ days and how in his youth he often used to visit the mountain. âWell that was special.â said Karl. How steep is the run? âYou got decent boots?â asked Karl. This dome was once a MÄori burial site and therefore considered tapu (sacred) but our attention was focussed on the 120m drop down to the crater floor. Also destroyed were the famous Pink and White Terraces, once considered to be the eighth wonder of the world. Together with our guide, Karl from @kaitiakiadventures, we were the only three on the mountain and conditions were perfect. Together with our guide, Karl. No, thatâs not possible. Standing on top of Mount Tarawera summit I look around me and see...not much, really. Mariners House, Tarawera Road, Lake Tarawera, Rotorua, New Zealand Latitiude:-38.20624787242264 Longitude: 176.37411476760258 [email protected] +64 7 362 8080 Travel by off-road 4x4 vehicle into the North Island wilderness with a guide. Passages like the one called âKeep Left Or Dieâ add some extra thrill to the walk on Tarawera volcano. In other words, we grabbed our stuff and got the hell out of the car. I also know this wasnât the last time we did the Tarawera Crater Walk. Follow winding hiking trails from the base of Mt Tarawera … Outstanding hike around Mt Tarawera. We are Alex the Swiss Miss and Chris the South African Kiwi. âGoodâ. We first thought it was a joke when our guide told us and we didnât see any, either. It means that if this was a snow covered ski run and you happened to fall, you and gravity would be having some pretty strong words until you finally reached the bottom. Continuing along the gradually rising track we suddenly heard a bird call and turning back towards the multi-coloured cliffs of Ruawahia saw two kÄrearea orÂ New Zealand falcons. Landområdet er i maori-privatejede hænder. Yes, Tarawera volcano is still active. The complete walk is over basalt rock and sand. We like to think that in some small way, the events of that day will become part of Karlâs story of the mountain, shared with future visitors to Mount Tarawera as a tale of what they too could experience if theyâre really really lucky. Turns out heâd driven past us earlier, finally managed to turn around several kilometres up the road and then come back to give us a hand. In 1886, Mt. Experience the majesty of Mt Tarawera and gain insight into New Zealand’s rich geology on this 4-hour hike from Rotorua. We start walking and Steve points out what we would normally see if we werenât stuck in the clouds. After a 1.5-2 hour hike and a scree run down into the crater, your guide will drop you at the remote shores of Lake Rerewhakaaitu. Discover Aotearoa - New Zealand from N to Z, Why the Mount Tarawera Crater Walk is a must-do in New Zealand. Ascend Mount Tarawera by off-road 4x4 vehicle and a guided hike to the summit; Combine Maori culture with stunning scenic vistas and 360° panoramic views; Discover local history, myths, and legends from your experienced guide… The walk itself is about 4km long and the loop takes approximately 2 hours to complete, picture-snapping included. From the saddle, itâs a short rock scramble up to a ridge and from there, a short walk to the trig beacon and the summit itself. Yes, you read right, the Australian animal (not the Australian Rugby players)! We were heading back to Rotorua on Highway 5, once again cosied up in the front of the Land Cruiser, when suddenly, the windscreen wipers came to life, not in a gentle side-to-side fashion, but more of a maniacal thrashing that continued for a few seconds before ending with a loud and rather ominous grinding noise. An all day combo taking you from the volcanic crater of Mt Tarawera… Itâs not a particularly difficult walk by any stretch of the imagination and soon we found ourselves looking across at âthe scree runâ on the opposite side of the crater. To the southwest, the crater stretches almost another 2 km towards the Tarawera dome. More info. Mt Tarawera Half Day Volcanic Tours depart twice daily from Rotorua and includes expert guided walks around the summit and crater of Mt Tarawera, encompassing some of New Zealand's most stunning … More by chance than anything else, weâd chosen to do the Mount Tarawera hike almost 130 years to the day that the mountain last erupted. However, the real devastation came when the eruption spread southwest towards Lake Rotomahana (previously two smaller lakes) and molten magma mixed with water to cause a massive explosion that ejected sand, rock, lava and superheated steam several kilometres into the air. We would face that monster when the time came but for now, it was onwards and upwards. âYesâ we said. From the summit itâs a short 500m walk to the craterâs edge above the scree run, marked by a sign restricting access to Wahanga dome. Faced with the choice of rattling around the back of a very empty and suitably old and battered Toyota Land Cruiser or sitting up front with Karl, we chose the latter option. Mount Tarawera access is now restricted to authorised tour operators and you’ll have to join a guided tour to even reach the mountain, with the access road gated and permanently locked. Off the sealed road and onto gravel, we headed up the mountain, first through planted pine forest and then, as the track got narrower and steeper, through native forest that had grown back since the last eruption. Read more about the best attractions in Rotorua. When the weatherâs clear, you can see Rotoruaâs many lakes, even all the way to White Island in the Bay of Plenty. Oh wellâ¦ (pic courtesy of kaitiaki). This “restlessly sleeping” volcano has erupted five times in the last … Book your tickets online for Mt. âWhat are the chances of another car breaking down in this exact same spot?â we thought. By the way: Thereâs also a fun scree run on the famous Tongariro Crossing, but itâs tiny compared to the one on Mt Tarawera. Knowing how stunning it is even in pouring rain, sooner or later weâre going to come back and see it on a sunny day! Find all articles about Rotorua (and Taupo) here! You need a moderate fitness to do the walk. At 1,111m, the summit of Ruawahia is the highest point in the area and as you would expect, the panoramic views are spectacular. top 1 0 1398837 Experience stunning panoramic views over Lake Okareka, Lake Okataina, Lake Rotorua, Lake Tarawera with the majestic Mount Tarawera beaming down on you. âYes,â said Debs, âbut not as odd as the smoke thatâs coming up between your legs.â Unsurprisingly we stopped shortly thereafter and exited the vehicle in an orderly fashion. And there are some short but steep parts you need to climb, as well as the scree run into the crater. Youâll have a more relaxed time on the mountain as the guides wonât have to rush back to Rotorua to pick up the next group. If youâre afraid of heights, there might be a couple of challenging points, but itâs never too narrow that it could be dangerous. The colours seem to pop even more in the rain and the passing clouds give it a mystical feel, almost as if the spirits of the Maori chiefs are following us. In 2015 we went white water sledging just north of Rotorua with Kaitiaki Adventures. Enjoying the views from the summit of Mount Tarawera on Saturday. Experience the stunning landscapes and history on foot with Kaitiaki Adventures. Mount Tarawera … Here we sheltered from the wind and had a small bite to eat while Karl pointed out various landmarks and shared more stories of the mountain and its history. Experience the majesty of Mt Tarawera and gain insight into New Zealand’s rich geology on this 4-hour hike from Rotorua. As the land of Mount Tarawera belongs to the local Maori tribe- the only way to walk on Mount Tarawera is with a local guide. If you do struggle, the guides will be there to help. I suspect this was because she was picturing it as a handbag and a new pair of boots. The Tarawera Trail walk is gaining the reputation of being one of the most beautiful day walks in New Zealand. Note: This was not a sponsored trip, we paid for it ourselves and would do it again in a heartbeat. I didnât, but instead, I discovered a tour that would lead the top of my New Zealand travel bucket list: Mount Tarawera Crater Walk. After climbing 90% up this volcano, we exited our vehicle to begin our morning hike around the crater of Mt. US$118.06 per adult. We respect your privacy. Follow winding hiking trails from the base of Mt Tarawera … Over the course of the next 45 minutes, we watched the traffic going by until an approaching car came smoking and sputtering to a halt on the opposite side of the road. Mt Tarawera Volcanic Guided Hike Experience. We were approaching the final climb back up to the craterâs edge, our hearts heavy with the thought of having to leave this incredible place when, out of the corner of my eye, I spotted movement. Whatâs the best New Zealand SIM card for tourists (and locals)? Tarawera unexpectedly erupted, tearing a 10 mile fissure in the land and killing 150 people. The 30 minute drive turned into another 25 minute four wheel drive as we were bouncing around in the back seat. And above all (and as a general rule for New Zealand), wear layers! The mountain belongs to a Maori tribe and is closed to the public. Chris loves these kinds of runs anyway and quickly disappears in the cloudy distance below me. Two years after first learning about the Mount Tarawera Crater Walk, Kaitiaki Adventures guides Steve and Kyle take us on the tour. I hitched a ride with Mt Tarawera New Zealand; the only company with the rights to drive up to the crater, over 1,100 metres above sea level. âAwesome, but whereâs everybody else?â we asked. When you book your Tarawera volcano tour through Kaitiaki Adventure, your guide will pick you up from your Rotorua accommodation or Rotorua i-Site. âNo, itâs just the two of you. We keep walking along the fissure to the end of the crater where the last steep part awaits us. Seeing it from the air was a unique and special experience. Read more. After a quick coffee by the lake, we headed over to the local information centre (i-SITE) to meet our guide from Kaitiaki Adventures. This mostly depends on your further itinerary. Rotorua itself offers a good mix of adventure and relaxation in close proximity to the town centre. Without the vast views, we focus on what we can see around us. This ârestlessly sleepingâ volcano has erupted five times in the last 18,000 years and the MÄori names given to the three domes of the mountain and even the mountain itself (tara: peak, wera: to burn or be burnt down) tells of its tumultuous past. What does that mean in real terms? Tarawera can only be accessed by tour, but if you're keen for some epic panoramic views around the area, then definitely make the effort. You will not get spammed by us, promise! Along the way we stopped to admire the view to the southwest where we could just make out the snow covered peak of Mount Ruapehu almost 150 km away. There are a lot of FREE things to do in Rotorua. Throwback to 2017: I only just moved to New Zealand from Switzerland a couple of weeks ago, when I visited a small New Zealand travel expo in Auckland in the hopes of making some connections that could lead to a job. Mt Tarawera erupted on June 10th, 1886, the eruption destroyed the legendary Pink and White Terraces but also created the world’s … We also got to admire some of the local wildlife in the form of a herd of grazing cattle. Basically, it means running and jumping down a steep sandy slope into one of the volcanic craters. Vil I opleve Mt. Rotorua is an amazing destination, with so much to do and we encourage you to explore as much as you can when visiting. US$64.11 per adult. New Zealand travel blog, unique discoveries and inspiration. Also, donât forget to bring water! I managed without even coming close to a meltdown, so Iâm pretty confident you will, too :-) (No guarantee, though). Travel by off-road 4x4 vehicle into the North Island wilderness with a guide. This means fast-drying walking apparel like hiking pants, merino or gym shirt. Because I know my way around the country and have decades of experience creating bespoke itineraries! We meet our guides, Kayla and Lindsay, and hit the road for a 25-minute drive out to the Mt Tarawera Road. From a distance the run looked near vertical, and it seemed as if some giant, many legged creature had crawled its way out of the crater and was perhaps waiting to devour us when we got to the other side. Treat him to the epic sights from Mt. We pass over ridges with steep slopes and Iâm glad itâs not too windy and for once relieved the clouds wonât let me see all the way down. Trip time: All day Combine the unique crater walking experience with rafting on the Kaituna with Kaitiaki Adventures. That was all about to change on this trip. Discover Aotearoa is your go-to site for New Zealand travel advice. Seeing the crater like this you really begin to get a sense of scale but even then, itâs hard to imagine what it must have been like up here on the night of the eruption. Climb the mountain or view it from the Lake, or do both; either is spectacular and well worth the effort involved. This material then fell to earth in a boiling mass which covered the landscape in deposits up to 40m deep, completely destroying villages and killing approximately 150 people. Next thing, the driver did a u-turn and pulled up besides us. Click to book 2 nights in Rotorua in a 4* hotel plus the Tarawera Crater Walk tour for only $279 per person! We continued on the path towards the summit, stopping every few minutes to take in the increasingly beautiful view southeast towards the forest covered Ikawhenua Range, until we reached the Ruawahia dome saddle. It last erupted in a faithful June-night in 1886 with a massive blast that killed over 120 people, sunk the then-famous Pink and White Terraces and completely re-shaped the surrounding landscape (it also formed the Waimangu Volcanic Valley, a geothermal park). In reply we got a reassuring âsit tight bro, weâre on our wayâ. On arrival at the mountain base, begin the ascent to the crater's edge in an off-road 4x4 … Not for the first time that day he said, âyou lucky lucky peopleâ, shaking his head in disbelief. Thereâs no water tap from after youâre picked up at your accommodation. ... Our tour guide Steve was both knowledgeable and entertaining. â¦. More info. If you can choose, though, I suggest booking the afternoon tour. Quick View. Thatâs the Kiwi spirit for you right there! Suddenly, almost out of thin air, one of the falcons we had watched earlier literally dropped out of the sky, landing just a few meters in front of us before taking off again with something in its talons. Maybe youâll be lucky enough to see one! An expedition into North Island’s hidden gem—hiking up to the summit of Mount Tarawera and rafting down Tutea Falls, with plenty of meat pies all throughout. âCould this day get any better?â we thought. Your flight will include spectacular aerial overviews of Mount Tarawera… âHello, youâre two very lucky people. We climb up the aptly named âPunisherâ, a mix between solid rock and sand. Coming soon: Auckland's All Blacks Experience Review, Coming soon: Weta Workshop Unleashed Review, All the Waiheke Vineyards youâll want to visit, Hamilton Gardens or How to travel the world in one day, Best Hunua Ranges Walk: Massey Cossey Loop Track, Magical Lake Karapiro Glow Worm Kayaking with Lake District Adventures, Skiing Mt Ruapehu In Spring: The Good, Bad And The Soaked. What started as an eruption of Ruawahia (rua: chasm or abyss, wahia: to break open), the central and highest dome of the mountain, spread over the course of several hours across the entire mountain to form a wall of fire and a glow that was seen from as far as Napier, some 150 km away. The thing about Mount Tarawera is that it takes you by surprise, and no words can do it justice when you suddenly arrive at the craterâs edge. Meanwhile, Kayla goes through the plan for the 4-5-hour trip including a hike around the crater of the volcano. But there really is a population of wallabies living on the mountain and in the Rotorua area. It last erupted in a faithful June-night in 1886 with a massive blast that killed over 120 people, sunk the then-famous Pink and White … Kayak Donut Island (Whenuakura): A Mystical Wonderland. Kaitiaki Adventures runs daily fully guided walking experiences that encompass … On a budget? By the looks of things, the alternator had decided to make itâs last volt and figured that if it was going to go, it was going to take the rest of the vehicleâs electrics with it. We never felt rushed on the mountain and we really appreciated sharing our adventure with a local who could bring the place to life. However, it was the event which began in the early hours of June 10th 1886 that was to have the most tragic consequences for the local inhabitants of the area. The air became damp and chilly, not the warm semi-sunny day we had lower down in Rotorua. Trying to decide which geothermal park you should visit? This is the best day weâve had all winter.â said Karl. However, the last eruption was the devastating one in 1886 and it hasnât erupted since. Youâre also unlikely to see any volcanic or geothermal activity like in Rotorua itself or on White Island. Back then, Mount Tarawera used to be open to anyone but over the years, as visitor numbers grew, the rubbish began to pile up until Taraweraâs NgÄti Rangitihi owners (the local tribal group) decided enough was enough. Well, my highly unscientific guesstimate would put it at about 45 degrees. We all made sure to really keep left and no one died (actually, no one has ever died on the Mt Tarawera tours, youâll be right). The hike … Ascend Mount Tarawera by off-road 4x4 vehicle and a guided hike to the summit Combine Maori culture with stunning scenic vistas and 360° panoramic views Discover local history, myths, and legends from your experienced guide We left Auckland before dawn on the Saturday morning and were treated to a spectacular sunrise on the road which was something of a relief given that the weather in the weeks leading up to our trip had been pretty rubbish.
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