Lake Taupo is renowned the fishing mecca of New Zealand, offering year round trout fishing and boasting smoking and freezing facilities. Rainbow trout weigh 1.5 – 2.0kgs, and brown trout 2.0 – 2.5kgs. Larger fish can often be encountered where streams enter the lake. You will require a separate licence to fish Lake Taupo, which can be obtained from any sports shop, hotel or information centre. Trout catches in Taupo are limited to three per person per day.
The Waitahanui River, approximately ten kilometres south of Taupo, is another fishing haven, where 3.0 – 3.5kg catches are not unusual. You will require thigh or chest waders.
The Rotorua Lakes, north of Taupo, offer superb year round trout fishing.
Rainbow trout are plentiful in Lake Tarawera and are larger in size than those caught in Lake Taupo. However they are also more difficult to catch.
Lake Rotorua is without a doubt the highest catch rate of any lake within the southern hemisphere boasting 3-4 fish per hour when its on. The fish are all wild from the awesome natural breeding streams (8) running into it. Approx one in 200 fish are brown trout prized by many as the best eating and great fighters. Local guides are available to enable you and your party to experience either rainbow or brown trout delights and many will guarantee you a fish or money back!
The lower reaches of surrounding rivers attract the largest rainbow and brown trout. Turangi, proclaiming itself the trout capital of the world, is situated on the famous Tongariro River, boasting 800 – 900 tonnes of trout each year. Although smaller than Taupo, Turangi provides facilities for cleaning, smoking, freezing and vacuum packing. Restaurants are happy to cook your trout catches for dinner. The village of Tokaanu lies at the mouth of the Tongariro River and is also favoured by fisherman.
The Tongariro Trout Hatchery, three kilometres south of Turangi, has an underwater viewing chamber and information centre, open daily from 9am – 4pm.