Taupo is an example of how something catastrophic can create something extraordinary. The volcanic eruption that created the lake over two thousand years ago was so massive that it created the crater that formed the lake.
Taupo is a tourist mecca that attracts thousands of visitors who come for everything from adventure activities such as skydiving and bungee jumping to more leisurely pursuits – golf, fishing, hiking and family-friendly activities. It sits in the heart of some of the North Island’s most beautiful country, north of the World Heritage recognised Tongariro National Park. As such, Taupo's event calendar is always brimming with local, national and international events. The town’s most recognisable asset is Great Lake Taupo itself, providing endless opportunity for fun, leisure activities, adventure and relaxation.
The original inhabitants (tangata whenua) of the area were the Maori tribe who remain in Taupo and surrounds today: Ngati Tuwharetoa. The tribes claim descent from Ngatoroirangi, navigator and high priest of the Arawa migration canoe. After the Arawa canoe made landfall in Aotearoa/New Zealand in about 750 AD, Ngatoroirangi and a relative from the same canoe, Tia, competed to be the first to explore the central plateau region. Although the accounts of Ngatoroirangi and Tia differ in how Taupo came to be, Taupo was founded by Ngati Tuwharetoa at this time.
Love fishing? Taupo is a fishing mecca – in particular the nearby town of Turangi, which is considered the trout fishing hub of the region. The drive around the eastern shore of the lake from Taupo to Turangi offers stunning views.
There are as many relaxing things to do in Taupo as there are exhilarating. Take a soak in a naturally heated hot spring; marvel at the mighty Huka Falls from a viewing platform; race around the lake on a jet boat; hike through the nearby National Park or Tongariro Crossing; or hire kayaks and paddle the lake. The options are almost limitless.
For Local Activities see the above Directory Tab.
Taupo District Council Telephone:
Where can I freedom camp in Taupo?
We understand many of you are wondering where in Taupo you can freedom camp following the Council’s new freedom camping bylaw, which prohibits Ferry Road. We have been in regular contact with the Taupo District Council since their new bylaw was adopted, and can now provide members with some practical guidance a long with a few alternative overnight parking options that are within walking / biking distance to the CBD.
Please note, this is a live document and we may need to add / amend the content depending on how the Council manages their new regime. For that reason, we suggest you keep an eye out for any updates and follow the instructions of any official signs placed on site.
Remember, in addition to freedom camping on Council-controlled land throughout Taupo, you may also freedom camp on conservation land e.g. 5 Mile Bay and Whakaipo Bay, not to mention stay overnight at the Taupo NZMCA Park (exclusive to NZMCA members) or one of the many public campgrounds throughout Taupo.
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