Wear comfortable shoes as walking is a must do around here.
Hat / sunglasses for a hot sunny day. Sunscreen is a must too.
An umbrella for a rainy day. Can be found in the nearby supermarkets Can be easily found in the town center Can be found but you might want to carry what you have already with you.
Nice but a bit expensive
We were attracted by the Lone Star café because we thought it was a pub and we were looking for a quick and tasty dinner.
It was quite late for a supper in New Zealand (10pm) but the staff was very welcoming and accepted us as last customers of the night. The menu offers a set of local dishes completed with a dish of the day. The meal was very tasty, but definitely too much expensive for a pub-like restaurant.
You have a few choices if you want to check out one of the many thermal reserves in Rotorua. We selected Whatarewarewa, and were not disappointed. You are free to wander on your own, or enjoy the guided tour. The guide was very interesting and informative. A small Maori population still lives at the reserve; bathing and cooking with the thermal waters. You even have the chance to purchase corn on the cob cooked right in the waters. The hightlight is the Pohutu Geyser which erupts several times a day; some eruptions over 60' into the air (great photo ops). Be sure and check out the Maori culture show which is also included in your admission price.
Rainbow Springs was a very nice place to wander around in for a hour or so, the small ponds full of trout was great, loved it, the bird life was a bit slim but I think that was due to some renovation work being done, but over all still nice.
The kids will love watching the trout swim in there natural surrounds.
Rotorua lies in a very active geothermal area, and hosts a number of spas: you cannot miss the wonders of a natural spa when you are in town!
We went for the Polynesian Spa because our accommodation was very close to it, and because it ranks in the World top 10 spas.
Admission fees change depending on the areas you want to access. It is possible to rent private pools, but we went for the Adult Pools & Priest Spa for 20NZ$ which includes 7 pools (with different water temperature) facing Lake Rotorua.
Definitely a relaxing experience, also because we went there at sunset time, and the view on the lake was stunning.
I suggest starting from the coolest pool (36°C) and moving to the warmest one (42°C) step by step. We started from the 41°C pool, and I was about to faint!
A store with face and body skin care products is located in the spa foyer.