Rotorua- a city in New Zealand; is one of the most unique cities I have ever visited. It’s considered a major hub for geothermal activity and has several scenic touristy spots. I visited for half a day and here are my top attractions:
1) Whakarewarewa- Thermal Geyser/Village Tour
Our first stop was Whakarewarewa, a vibrant Maori village. The Maori are the ancestral people of New Zealand, much like the Aborigines are in Australia. Their culture encompasses strength and sustainability. They gave us a tour of some amazing thermal sites, where steam spews out of rocks, lakes and mud-pools. The mud-pools were so hot that they were literally bubbling up with heat. Apparently the Maori living in the village use the steam for various things such as generating electricity, washing clothes, medicinal stuff and even cooking!
2) A Maori Concert
This concert was as unique as the thermal village. Firstly, the chief of the Maori tribe had to choose a chief amongst the audience. My father was hiding, so as not to be picked. Ironically, this lead to him being picked. The Maori have a unique way of greeting others, by pressing their nose and forehead to each other. My dad did this with the tribe and our entire family was given VIP treatment as relatives of Chief. Ramakrishnan! The rest of the concert consistent of a resplendent Maori folk musical. We were also invited on stage to dance with them. Too much fun!
3) The ZORB
Imagine being inside a big round plastic ball and being tossed down a hill. That’s exactly what the ZORB is. You bounce from one end of the ball to the other, just like beads would inside a shaker. The wind was particularly strong the day we went, therefore, to make the ZORB steadier they put water into it. We were completely drenched and it was winter in New Zealand! Brr. Thankfully they had a hot Jacuzzi waiting for us after getting out.
4) The Polynesian Spa
I didn’t visit this one personally but my parents did. The Thermal pools at Rotorua exhibit healing and calming properties, and this Spa is super famous for its private and public bath pools. They have an outdoor private pool which overlooks the beautiful hilly areas and lake of Rotorua. It’s a perfect way end tiring half-day trip and return home with a glow.
So that’s my experience with Rotorua. A place I definitely suggest people visit.
Source of Key chain: Whakarewarewa Souvenir shop in Rotorua