Kuirau Park, in the heart of Rotorua is New Zealand’s only geothermal public park and features:

  • beautiful gardens
  • a crater lake
  • mud pools
  • hot springs
  • free thermal foot baths
  • bbqs and picnic tables
  • children's playground
  • a free Wedding Venue
  • food market held every Saturday from 6am to 1pm

In the early 1800s, the small lake in the centre of the park was much cooler and was known as Taokahu. 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 forever. From that time on, the bubbling lake and the steaming land around it have been known by the name of the lost woman, although the spelling has changed a little from Kuiarau to ‘Kuirau.’

Walking tracks lead to numerous areas of vigorous geothermal activity.

Visitors are strongly encouraged to stay on the cool side of the safety fences!

The free Kuirau Park Footbaths are remarkable for soaking your feet in. Keep in mind this is a footbath, so bathing is not advised. Enjoy the lovely surroundings, especially on cool days as steam from geothermal vents surround you. Take a towel to sit on as the wooden seats do get wet.

Kuirau Park is situated just off Pukuatua and Ranolf streets and admission is free. Rotorua is popular for its geothermal activity and has many naturally occuring hot pools in the region.