Driver Information
New Zealand ItinerariesTravel distance is approximately 81kms (51 miles).
Allow at least 1 hour drive time (not including stops).

With such a short travel distance between Taupo and Rotorua you an choose to spend part of your day enjoying the remainder of Taupo’s highlights that you couldn’t fit it the day before, alternatively you can set off early and give yourself a full day of Rotorua tourist magic. The choice is yours!

The drive journey between Taupo and Rotorua may be short, however the scenic highlights will not disappoint as you traverse the unusual, volcanic geography combined with large pine forest plantations.

Some notable stops along the route to Taupo include:

The road to Orakei Korako does require a detour from your main route towards Rotorua, but is worth the journey, considering Orakei Korako is only accessible by boat (which is included in the admission fee and run on request throughout the day). The tour includes viewing of the Silica Terraces, active natural geysers, boiling hot springs, mud pools and the thermal Ruatapu Cave.

Also located approximately 20 minutes from Rotorua, this is eco-tourism at its finest! Stretch your legs with an easy walk within the native flora and fauna, or take a boat cruise experience ranging in duration from 45 minutes to over 4 hours at Waimangu.

Considered one of the ‘must do’s’ of Rotorua, make sure you stop for a visit on your way into Rotorua! Located approximately 20 minutes from Rotorua along State Highway 5, this thermal wonderland is open from 8.30am – 5.00pm daily and offers visitors the opportunity to walk around the geothermal park and experience the world famous champagne pool, boiling mud, hot springs and huge volcanic craters, along with the daily eruption of the Lady Knox Geyser at 10.15am.

An international tourism icon, Rotorua is renowned as the heartland of Maori culture and boasts a large multi-cultural population. The town itself is located on the southern shore of Lake Rotorua, however there is a staggering 16 lakes in the vicinity of Rotorua, making it a trout fishing or water sport enthusiasts ultimate holiday resort.

Highly recommended Rotorua tourist attractions include…

Tamaki Maori Village – Begin your journey back in time as your driver/guide leads you back to pre-European times as you travel by coach to the Maori Village, set deep in the Rotorua forest. Enjoy a traditional Maori welcome before enjoying your 3 and a half hour evening experience, which finishes with a traditionally-cooked Maori feast from earthen ovens combined with lively entertainment.

Hells Gate Thermal Reserve – Rotorua’s most active thermal park and New Zealand’s only mud bath complex with geothermal mud and therapeutic water.

Agrodome Sheep Show & Farm Tour – Enjoy an hour long live show of working New Zealand sheep and dairy farming in an interactive and truly enjoyable display.

Buried Village – Visit the Museum of Te Wairoa and take a special journey as the fascinating story of the village of Te Wairoa unfolds, including the voyages to the Pink and White Terraces and the eruption of Mt Tarawera.

Skyline Skyrides – A great all weather attraction for the entire family. Enjoy a picturesque ride up the gondola for fabulous aerial views of the region. Dine in the restaurant at the top and ride the famous luge back down!

Rotorua shopping will sedate even the most avid shopaholic with a huge range of speciality shops, fashion stores, arts, crafts and much more while the impressive range of casual and formal dining options will satisfy even the most fussiest of diners! Dining options include Chinese, Japanese, Italian, Korean, Mexican, Indian, Mediterranean, European and traditional Maori hangi.

Accommodation is also varied and plentiful, ranging from holiday parks and backpacker lodges, to farmstays, friendly Bed & Breakfast lodges, hotels, motels, self-contained holiday houses and luxury resorts.
New Zealand Itineraries: North Island Suggested Itineraries

Our modern self-drive travel Itineraries have routes specifically for the North Island as well as the South Island, ranging from 5 to 11 days, plus there are some travel routes that take in both the North and South Island’s. Our range of travel itineraries include information regarding travel distances and time to ensure that you can make the best of your time in New Zealand, no longer how short your visit!

  • 5 Day Itinerary: Auckland – Rotorua, Rotorua – Taupo, Taupo – Waitomo Caves and Waitomo Caves – Auckland
  • 6 Day Itinerary: Auckland – Coromandel, Coromandel – Whitianga, Whitianga – Tauranga, Tauranga – Rotorua and Rotorua – Auckland
  • 6 Day Itinerary (route 2): Auckland – Dargaville, Dargaville – Kaitaia, Kaitaia – Paihia, Paihia – Whangarei and Whangarei – Auckland
  • 7 Day Itinerary: Auckland – Whitianga, Whitianga – Tauranga, Tauranga – Rotorua, Rotorua – Taupo, Taupo – Napier and Napier – Wellington
  • 8 Day Itinerary: Wellington, Wellington – Masterton, Masterton – Wellington, Wellington – Nelson, Nelson – Blenheim and Blenheim – Christchurch
  • 9 Day Itinerary: Auckland – Coromandel, Coromandel – Whitianga, Whitianga – Tauranga, Tauranga – Gisborne, Gisborne – Napier, Napier – Taupo, Taupo – Rotorua, Rotorua – Waitomo Caves and Waitomo Caves – Auckland
  • 9 Day Itinerary (route 2): Auckland – Whangarei, Whangarei – Paihia, Paihia – Hokianga, Hokianga – Auckland, Auckland – Rotorua, Rotorua – Taupo, Taupo – Waitomo Caves and Waitomo Caves – Auckland
  • 11 Day Itinerary: Auckland – Whitianga, Whitianga – Tauranga, Tauranga – Rotorua, Rotorua – Gisborne, Gisborne – Napier, Napier Taupo Napier, Napier – Wellington, Wellington – New Plymouth, New Plymouth – Waitomo and Waitomo Caves – Auckland