Rain or Shine - Visit the Huka Prawn Park

Looking for a fun family activity that you can enjoy in any kind of weather? Check out the Huka Prawn Park, Wairakei Tourist Park, Taupo, NZ.

We all know this summer hasn’t been so great weather wise this year but that means we just have to find ways to have fun as a family that don’t require perfect summer weather… so that’s exactly what our family did over the holidays.

One of those not so great days when the weather couldn’t decide if it was wet or dry, warm or cold, we headed out to the Huka Prawn Park at Wairakei Tourist Park next to Huka Falls Jet.

The tour of the prawn farm was really quite fascinating, and it was just long enough to get all the info you need but short enough that the kids didn’t lose interest.  So amazing to take advantage of the unique geothermal feature of the Taupo region.

Our cheerful guide told us all the prawn facts we would ever need to know and the kids got to participate and feed the baby prawns- the tickles from little prawn bites made both my girls squeal and giggle.

At the end of the tour we got the run down on how to catch a prawn, given a few essential tips, issued bamboo fishing rods, bait and buckets of ice and sent forth to the ponds to catch what we thought would be our dinner…

There were heaps of people out there, each trying to refine their technique and trick the prawns into latching onto their hook, many had their buckets brimming with prawns so we thought – it can’t be that hard!

But it was actually rather tricky, those prawns definitely play hard to get and an hour or so later we had caught only one (unfortunately one prawn doesn’t go far when you are sharing between 5 family members – we cooked it on the BBQ and each got a small bite). 

If the park hadn’t been closing we would have stayed longer as it was rather enjoyable sitting out in the park – man vs nature.  Next time we’ll head out there earlier and make a day of it and perhaps come back with a few more for our BBQ.

The big sun umbrellas dotted around the ponds make good shelter for both sun and rain so you can head out and enjoy the park in any weather. 

The park is not just prawn fishing; there are tracks throughout with water features and trout fishing in a larger pond.  If it’s a hot day then there are heaps of water activities for the kids to play in.

If you’ve got littlies like I do then I suggest you make sure you have a couple of extra sets of eyes and hands available as you wouldn’t want to make an unexpected rescue swim in one of the prawn ponds but otherwise it’s a great place for families of all ages.

If you fancy a feed of prawns and your skills at prawn fishing are on the amateur side like ours then you can always dine at the Riverside Restaurant overlooking the Waikato River.

I have to admit, it surprised us how much we enjoyed the Huka Prawn Park, and its now a must do on our list of fun family activities.