Well its no secret that we love heading off for a family adventure to Rotorua, and the reason why is that it is something that I grew up doing as a child with my family and a tradition that I want to continue, as well as being an great place for family fun times.
I still have such fond memories of dipping my feet in the hot pools and riding the swans and train at Kuirau Park which are sadly no long there. The Dragon breathed real live fire didn’t you know, and I have photos of us climbing the Tanks in the playground.
Well yes its changed a lot but the main thing is, is that Ashton and Franca will have their own memories by the attractions that we visit on our trips here, though Rainbow Fairy Springs is still going strong. We usually stay at the Holiday Inn while we are there as it is just such a great kid friendly Hotel with large rooms we can all share and a bar and Restaurant on site with a fab buffet so after travelling down you don’t need to head out anywhere. The kids also eat and stay for free and the heated swimming pool is well used by our two.
We also stayed last visit at The Rotovegas Motel, another great option if you prefer a motel style place that has everything on the doorstep such a Cobb and Co and the supermarket. We had a self contained unit that had its own hot tub so that was a real treat, this place would be perfect for a longer stay or if your wanted to self cater more.
As far as attractions Rotorua has so much to do, you’d need a week to experience it all and quiet a bit of cash too so we tend to try our old few favs and throw in a few new ones each visit. A trip up the Skyline Gondola is a must, take a few luges and finishing off the day with a nice red as the sun goes down at Volcanic Hills winery is perfect. We also tried the buffet in the Restaurant there last time and it was full of fabulous food, all Id say is it was super busy so maybe better without two small tired children on tow.
Other must are Rainbow Fairy Springs, feed the trout, ride the Big Wave and walk in the Redwoods.
The actual Treewalk in the main Redwoods is a great time http://redwoods.co.nz/info/prices/ but also heading out to the free Redwoods the other side of Rotorua for a walk is a goody too, the kids loved the Dancing Sand as much as me, and theres a few cool geocaches to find too. http://www.doc.govt.nz/parks-and-recreation/places-to-go/bay-of-plenty/places/hamurana-springs-recreation-reserve/things-to-do/hamurana-springs-track/
We’ve also tired Motion a huge inside park with everything you need for a rainy day such as Gravity Tramp Park, Mini Golf,Bowling, Chipmunks and more.https://www.motionentertainment.co.nz/about-motion-entertainment/activity-pricing
A walk around Kuirau Park is still a good time with a thermal hot pool for feet dipping and some bubbling mud pools to watch and smell, and its all free. Another great freebie is the playground down on the lakefront, there always seems to be something else going on down there too such as bouncey castles and pony rides. Check out the Terrace Kitchen while there for the best feed and kid friendly Restaurant thats open for three meals a day.
We’ve also been to Paradise Valley, Amaze Me,The Buried Village, Polynesian pools, The Agradome, Te Puia (though think kids were a little young for this) and Franca has done the Orb with Vaughan. Theres certainly a lot to keep you busy and hence why we visit yearly.
So all in all if you want a action packed getaway and for us only a 2.5 hour drive away Rotorua has it all. Its not a cheap place if you want to do it all but check out your hotel or online for Adventure packages that will include a few of them together, there are savings to be had that way.