The town of Taupo lies at the northeast edge of New Zealand’s largest lake, Lake Taupo, which was formed by volcanic activity. Due to its positioning on one of New Zealand’s volcanic plateaus, it enjoys breathtaking views of the surrounding mountain, Mount Ruapehu, and the beaches that encircle the lake. The town allures tourists to the area with its lake, which offers fishing, sailing and water sports opportunities. Due to its active landscape, Taupo also contains many thermal springs. These present the chance to relax in a natural spa whilst enjoying the outstanding scenery around you. This is an experience that cannot be recreated.


Lake Taupo is the most famous trout-fishing lake in the world, thus there is no better place to visit to catch your dinner. During peak seasons fishermen are often lined shoulder-to-shoulder. The surrounding rivers also contain an abundance of trout, and the best time to fish in them is between May and October. Lake fishing is at its greatest from November until March. A fishing license, valid for anything from a day to the whole season, must be purchased. These are available from all sports shops and the information centre in the town.

Due to its outstanding views, Taupo is one of the most popular places in New Zealand to skydive and is home to the world’s largest commercial Tandem Skydive Drop Zone. This ultimate experience will provide you with sights that you will never forget. Consider these operators: Taupo Tandem Skydiving and Skydive Taupo.

If you fancy enjoying the scenery at a slightly slower pace, cruises are available on the lake. These offer relaxing day and evening trips and are a perfect way to absorb the scenery that envelops the lake.

In winter, Taupo offers top-class skiing. Mount Ruapehu provides around 4450 acres of slopes, which cater for all abilities. The northwestern face of the mountain is referred to as Whakapapa. It has excellent beginner slopes, as well as runs that present more of a challenge. Skiers that wish to use these slopes are advised to base themselves at Whakapapa Village, which is only 9 miles from the mountain face. The southwestern face is called Turoa, and skiers that wish to use these runs should stay at nearby Ahakune.

Outside the ski season, the mountain has many walks and hikes. The Whakapapa Visitors Centre has details on trails and walking huts. Most walks can be completed within a day. The mountain can also be used for mountainboarding. This consists of flying down the side of the mountain at terrific speeds on a board with wheels. Not for the fainthearted!


Most of the shops to be found in Taupo are those selling fishing equipment. The usual chain shops can also be found, as well as a scattering of shops selling tourist goods and gifts.

Nightlife and Eating Out

Taupo’s restaurants are at the top end of the price scale, but offer an excellent range of international cuisine.

Although Taupo is a small town, it has a relatively large number of bars for its size. Tongariro Street offers most of the lively places to go.

Tourist Information

Taupo Visitor’s CentreTongariro StreetTaupoNew Zealand

Tel: +64 7376 0027Fax: +64 7378 9003Web: www.laketaupo.nz.comEmail: taupovc@laketauponz.com


Taupo Airport is located 8km south of the town and has daily internal flights to Auckland and Wellington. It also has connections the South Island. Due to the surrounding fishing opportunities, the airport is becoming an increasingly popular destination for use by private jets.