In the early 1800s, the small lake in the centre of Kuirau Park was much cooler. Legend tells us that a beautiful young woman named Kuiarau was bathing in the waters when a taniwha (dragon) dragged her to his lair below the lake. The gods above were infuriated and made the lake boil so that the taniwha would be destroyed.
The taniwha hasn’t been seen since but the lake still bubbles away – just in case. The park was named after the ill-fated woman, although the spelling has changed from Kuiarau to Kuirau.
Meandering paths take you around the park to see the steaming, hissing, and boiling geothermal activity in the heart of Rotorua.
We strongly encourage you to stay on the cool side of the safety fences to avoid the same fate as Kuiarau!
The free footbath near the centre of the park is wonderful for soaking and refreshing tired feet. Please note, the footbath is occasionally not available in the colder months.