Interactive games, cultural performances and experiences, witnessing the native kiwi bird up-close and watching the Southern Hemisphere’s largest erupting geyser in action – this is just a taste of what is offered at Te Puia.
If you’re stuck for ideas on how to keep kids entertained in Rotorua, a Te Puia Family Pass for $79 provides hours of entertainment, which is both fun and educational for children and adults of all ages.
The pass is valid for two consecutive days for two adults and up to three kids – and you’ll easily use that time with all Te Puia has to offer.
Te Puia is home of the world-famous Pōhutu geyser, bubbling mud pools and natural hot springs and the experienced guides – some of whom are fifth generation advisers – come with a wealth of knowledge to explain the history behind each in a way that is engaging for young and old.
The guided experiences scheduled for 10.30am and 1.30pm each day allow visitors to see the iconic kiwi bird in the Kiwi Conservation Centre where five kiwi live as part of the national breeding programme.
You’ll also get to see master carvers and weavers in action as they hand down their knowledge to the next generation of skilled students as you walk through the New Zealand Māori Arts and Crafts Institute, which opened in 1967.
Children will love the motorised waka rides down to the geothermal valley, stopping alongside the many attractions along the way.
And they will love the Kids Zone, which is an added bonus to your family pass. It is here they will take part in interactive games, learn about the cultural significance of the poi and marākau and how to use them. They’ll also get to stand inside a wharenui where they’ll get to enjoy daily cultural performances and leave with a stencilled temporary tā moko if they choose.
Just a few steps away you’ll find the Āhua Gallery, showcasing high end, Māori-made taonga carved from whale bone, greenstone and wood, or created using the traditional art form of weaving – each piece telling a story.
Once you’ve worked up an appetite exploring Te Puia there is no better place to refuel than the Pātaka Kai Restaurant serving hangi buffet and à la carte Māori fusion meals and a unique experience as the only place in the world where you can dine overlooking an active geyser.
With a family pass you’ll have access to all of this, all set in Rotorua’s historic geothermal Valley of Whakarewarewa.