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Lake Okareka is one of the smaller lakes within the Rotorua Lakes district, situated in a picturesque setting of hills, native forest and farmland, located only 10 minutes out of the Rotorua city centre. The lake, forest, reserves and walking tracks offer a great range of family friendly recreational activities for both locals and visitors.
To see the lake from a totally unique perspective take a tour with Rotorua Duck Tours. This is a unique and iconic Rotorua attraction that takes place aboard an amphibious “duck” that will drive you through the city and out to the lakes district to “splashdown” and cruise across the lakes. Their Rotorua City & Lakes Tour is the best way to see and learn about Rotorua and explore a number of lakes including Lake Okareka.
This is a great activity whether you are travelling alone or as a group and is also suitable and fun for all ages. Tours can become full so ensure you book your seat early to avoid missing out on the most unique tour in New Zealand. Booking online is easy through the Rotorua Duck Tours website.
Horse trekking around the hills and forest of Lake Okareka is a great way to see the beautiful New Zealand countryside and it's loads of fun. Trek up through the bush straight to the highest point on the farm with spectacular views over all the lakes in the area including Mount Tarawera, Lake Tarawera, the Blue Lake and Lake Okareka before riding back down through their private farm with views over Lake Rotorua. No experience is necessary to enjoy a scenic horse trek around the lake. With tours from 30 minutes to half a day, there are options to suit all levels of interest, abilities and budgets. Visit the Trek Okareka website for tour options, prices and booking details.
If you have a bit more time to explore the area and would love a kiwi camping experience, you must stay at the Lake Okareka Camp Site. There is no way to stay closer to the lake than by sleeping right on the waters edge in a secluded rural setting. However there is limited space at the campsite and tent sites are only available on a first in, first served basis. The friendly locals will more than likely help squeeze your tent in, but if you are unlucky and miss out on a spot there are still many other amazing accommodation options in the Okareka area.
For more information regarding campsite amenities and directions see the DOC website.
If you are looking for a free activity out on Lake Okareka you cannot miss the Lake Okareka Walkway. This is a built up boardwalk that allows for easy walking and is even wheelchair accessible. The walkway starts from a lakeside reserve and continues for approximately 2.5 kms around the shore of Lake Okareka. The hour and a half walk features native vegetation, farmland, lake and wetland scenery, as well as spectacular views and local wildlife.
The Walkway was built by the local council with the help of many other local organisations and took 2 years and hundreds of volunteer hours to create this beautiful walk. The Lake Okareka Walkway is one of the most scenic and easily accessible tracks in the Rotorua lakes district and is not to be missed. Find out more about the walkway from the local Rotorua Council Website.