New Zealand is sprinkled with an amazing array of hot thermal and mineral pools, thanks to its regional geothermal activity and some very clever man-made creations.
At Rotorua in the North Island, Polynesian Spa is renowned for its public and private pools, day spa and breathtaking views of the tranquil Lake Rotorua. This is very popular and often included in package holidays. Further north on the Coromandel Peninsula, near Whitianga is Hot Water Beach where you can literally dig yourself your own private pool in the sand. Just scoop out a shallow bath-shaped hollow, stretch out and let the hot water soak up. Bliss.
As well you can call in to Taupo and visit the De Brett Hot Springs, AC Baths (great for kids) and Wairakei Terraces Hot Pools (adults only). Stroll along the foreshore of Lake Taupo and in some places you'll feel hot water seep up between your toes through the pebbles.
In the South Island, the Franz Josef Glacier Hot Pools are nestled into lush rainforest. With private and public pools, massage and day spa, it's the perfect day's end after a hike on the glacier.
At Arthurs Point, near Queenstown, the Onsen Hot Pools are perched high on craggy cliffs overlooking the Shotover River canyon. Hot & steamy on snowy days and magical at night.
The wood-fired Hot Tubs at Omarama offer mountain fresh water from snow & glacier melt, in an open air winter alpine landscape. The mountain views are stunning. And at Lake Tekapo, the Tekapo Springs overlook the exquisite blue water of the lake with alpine backdrop. Landscaped into rock, the water temperature ranges from 36-40 degrees. With a day spa with sauna and steam room, plus skating rink and tube park, it's a wonderful family destination.
Just one hour, 45 minutes north of Christchurch is the beautiful alpine village of Hanmer Springs, famed for its therapeutic hot mineral pools. As well as luxury day spa and private pools for the adults, there are fun water slides and pools especially for the kids. With an on-site cafe it's a great place to spend a few hours in the summer or winter.
Kiwi Combo Pass is a great option when considering a New Zealand road trip. The flexible pass options include Thrifty car rental and your choice of motel or hotel accommodation. Activities including hot pool and spa bookings can be added for extra convenience. Alternatively, if you prefer a little more structure to your New Zealand holiday, then a preplanned package New Zealand self drive holiday may be a better way to go.