Lakes & Rivers

Rotorua is well known for its 18 lakes, three major rivers and heaps of ways to enjoy many of them – even at night.

 
Swimming, fishing, lakeside picnicking, paddle boarding and other water sports are the obvious activities, so hook up the boat, grab your floaties and head to Rotorua.
 
You can also soak away your worries at one of two secluded thermal hot water beaches accessible only by boat, luxury catamaran, floatplane or hike. Take a canoe, kayak or paddle board tour across a lake to see glow worms at night.
 
Do you prefer something a bit faster? Choose from an exhilarating jet boat experience through a tangled, man-made river at break-neck speed, or scream across Lake Rotorua in a jet boat that takes you to tour pristine Mokoia Island. You can even combine a jet boat ride with a unique geothermal experience at a natural hot water fall and hidden geothermal valley called The Squeeze.
 
Finally, one of Rotorua’s world-famous adventures is a must-do for adrenaline junkies: a whitewater rafting trip on the famous Kaituna River where you’ll drop off the world’s highest commercially raftable waterfall.

Check out our majestic lakes, including Lake Tarawera, Lake Rotoiti, Lake Ōkareka and the blue waters of Lake Tikitapu.

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Fish & Game Eastern Region

Lakes & Rivers

Fish & Game Eastern Region manages the trout fishery of the region including the world-famous Rotorua lakes.

Rotorua Trout Guide - Guided Fly Fishing

Lakes & Rivers

Rotorua fly fishing guide Julian Danby showcases the best fishing locations found in the Rotorua Lakes District. 

Kaitiaki Adventures - Rafting the Kaituna River

Lakes & Rivers

Multi-award winning Kaitiaki Adventures is passionate about continually providing world-class adventure tourism experiences in Rotorua. They love to share Aotearoa’s stunning environment, history and unique Māori culture, all the while infusing your experience with the warm and caring manaakitanga (hospitality) Rotorua is renowned for.

Lake Ōkāreka

Lakes & Rivers

One of the smaller lakes in the Rotorua region, Lake Ōkāreka remains off the beaten path, tucked away off the main road accessing lakes Tikitapu and Tarawera.

Cruise and Fish Rotorua

Lakes & Rivers

Some of the best fishing the Central North Island offers is accessed from Rotorua.

Lake Rotoiti

Lakes & Rivers

Lake Rotoiti is one of the three largest lakes in the Rotorua region. Surrounded by lush native bush, it also features glow worm caves and a secluded hot pool complex. 

Lake Ōkareka Walkway

Lakes & Rivers

Lake Ōkareka is popular with water skiers, swimmers, boaties and walkers.

Totally Tarawera

Lakes & Rivers

Guided cultural and geothermal tours to Te Rātā Bay and Hot Water Beach, including a natural hot pool soak.

Kaituna Cascades Rafting Company

Lakes & Rivers

Join the Original Kaituna Rafting Company for an unbeatable grade 5 white-water experience on one of New Zealand's most exciting and beautiful rivers!

Lake Rotokākahi (Green Lake)

Lakes & Rivers

Rotokākahi means "the lake of the shellfish kakahi". Locals also refer to the lake as the Green Lake.

Pure Cruise NZ

Lakes & Rivers, East

Sailing on Lake Rotoiti the most stunning and undiscovered lake in Rotorua. Enjoy sailing, hot pools, fine cuisine in pure comfort.

Paddle Board Rotorua glow worm tour

Lakes & Rivers, West

A glow worm tour with Paddle Board Rotorua is simply one of the best evening experiences to do in Rotorua.