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Where in the world is Great Lake Taupo?
The Great Lake Taupo district is centrally located in the middle of the North Island, approximately 3 ½ hours drive from Auckland and 4 ½ hours drive from Wellington. It is within a 2 hour drive of Waitomo Caves to the west, Hamilton to the north, Tauranga to the east and The Ruapehu District to the south.
Air New Zealand operates daily flights to Taupo Airport from Auckland and Wellington. Rotorua Airport is a 50 minute drive away which has connections for domestic destinations including Queenstown, as well as a twice-weekly flights from Sydney, Australia.
Lake Taupo is the largest fresh water lake in the southern hemisphere, making boating, water sports and kayaking to the Maori Rock Carvings popular all year round activities. It is the adventure capital of the North Island with Taupo jet boating, bungy jumping, mountain biking and sky diving on offer. The stunning vistas, lake-front cafes and the ever sought after New Zealand geothermal hot springs further making it a wonderful place to relax and escape busy city life.
Just 5 minutes north of the Taupo city centre is The Huka Falls, New Zealand’s most visited natural attraction. Lake Taupo is the region’s most significant geographical feature with an area of 616 km² or 60,000 hectares. Equivalent in land area to Singapore, the Lake is 164 metres deep and extends some 46 km south of the Taupo Township.
Turangi is world famous for trout fishing. It is home to the Tongariro National Trout Centre and the gate-way to the Dual Heritage Listed Tongariro National Park. It offers easy access to the Whakapapa and Turoa ski fields, and the Tongariro Alpine Crossing. It is an ideal base for a vast array of all-weather activities including white water rafting, kayaking, mountain biking, guided bushwalking, hunting, skiing, snowboarding, indoor & outdoor climbing, mineral hot pools and golf. The town is a 35 minute drive south of Taupo and a 40 minute drive from the Whakapapa ski field on Mt Ruapehu.
Mangakino is a tranquil township situated on the shores of Lake Maraetai, on the Waikato River. The town developed as a result of the Hydro-electricity Dam Scheme built in the 1950’s essentially creating 4 scenic lakes (Lake Maraetai, Whakamaru, Atiamuri and Waipapa).
It comes alive in summer with wake-boarding, boating, waterskiing, and cruising on the Otunui Paddleboat. The Waikato River Trails and The Pureora Forest Park are both located close by and offer impressive bush walks and mountain biking. The town is a 45 minute drive north-west from Taupo.
The Great Lake Taupo region has a population of 30,000 people, swelling to over 80,000 during the summer period.
The Central Plateau location makes average temperatures slightly lower than other North Island destinations.