Okere Falls is a hidden gem in the middle of the North Island of New Zealand, a short 20 minute drive from the tourism hub of Rotorua. There is plenty to see and do for a little place, leaving a visitor with great memories of their experience. Some (but not all) of the key features of Okere Falls include;
● Location: An easy 20 minute drive into Rotorua, or 10 minutes from the Rotorua International Airport. Okere Falls is on the way from Rotorua towards the Bay of Plenty Coastline of Maketu, Pukehina, Papamoa and Mount Maunganui., each of which would be around 30 minutes away. Okere Falls is situated on the shoreline of Lake Rotoiti, ensuring plenty of water sport options available.
● Accommodation: Some of the best accommodation options are peppered around the edges of Lake Rotoiti at Okere Falls. Rent out a holiday home with Te Pohutukawa Properties to enjoy self-contained peace and quiet, or enjoy hotel service with the Amora Rotorua at Okawa Bay.
● Okere Falls boasts the highest commercially rafted waterfall in the world at 7 metres, the Tutea Falls on the Kaituna River. Rafting & Kayaking are popular here, with the 2013 World Rafting Championships to be held here in October.
● Trout Fishing is popular on lake Rotoiti, which is famous for abundant trout numbers at good sizes. The trout fishing season on lake Rotoiti is open from the 1st of October to the 30th of June, with a licence required to be able to fish for trout (as across all of New Zealand).
● The jewel in the crown of Lake Rotoiti is the Manupirua Hot Springs, thermal hot pools overlooking Lake Rotoiti only accessible by boat. Here you can soak the stresses away and take in the amazing scenery. Take your own boat, ask the friendly locals the way, or jump onboard with a local operator such as Classic Cruises.
● ‘The Store’ is the local ‘go-to’ place for a decent coffee or to enjoy a boutique beer in their beer garden. As the hub of the community you will always see a smiling face or a friendly local you can talk to.
● There are some fantastic walking tracks around the Okere Falls area. The Okere Falls track is a 1.2km well-formed bush walk along the edge of the Kaituna river - nature at its best. Many other walks surround the local area, enough to keep you entertained all day.
What is not to love about the Okere Falls? Make sure you don’t miss this heaven-on-earth spot on your travels!
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