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Taupo Travel Information

Lake Taupo, the largest lake in New Zealand and an area of awesome beauty and diversity, occupies a depression caused by volcanic activity in times long past, though on all sides is evidence of the continuing instability of the earth's crust.

Often described as the jewel in the crown of the North Island, the lake is twenty five miles long, and at its widest, seventeen miles.

Its surface is 1,211 ft. above sea level, its greatest depth 534 ft.

From its outlet at the north end Lake Taupo discharges water at the rate of 5,000 cubic feet or more per second into the great Waikato River, generating electric power at half a dozen stations on its way to the sea, and filling artificial lakes in its course.

The town of Taupo at the north end of the lake originated as a European settlement with the establishment of an Armed Constabulary Redoubt in the times of the rebellion led by the famous Te Kooti.

One incident of that campaign was a surprise Maori attack on a small force encamped at Opepe near the present main highway from Taupo to Napier, and the loss of nine men of the Constabulary.

At the south end of the lake is Tokaanu, and two miles west of Tokaanu is Waihi Village, a Maori settlement and an early mission post.

The region has long been known as the trout fishing capital of the world, offering some of the best angling in New Zealand for rainbow and brown trout.

Organised fishing trips and private guides are on offer and a full range of equipment is available for hire at the various outlets.

The Waitauhanui Stream entering Lake Taupo on its north-eastern shore only seven miles from Taupo town, forms another of the lovely reaches of this angler's paradise, though, indeed, the attention of the fisherman is likely to be distracted by the glow of its glorious sunsets.

He is less likely to be aware of the fact that the rebel Te Kooti led his followers along these very shores (now traversed by a modern sealed highway) to enlist what support he could from the Ngati-Tuwharetoa tribe at Tokaanu, Turangi, and Waihi.

The area's lakes and rivers are very popular for a variety of both winter and summer water sports and there is no better way to appreciate the natural beauty than by taking a cruise.

Thrill seekers can enjoy bungy jumping, jet boating and the neighbouring countryside provides the perfect environment for a number of land sports, including mountain biking and hiking.

Numerous top quality hotels, motels and hostels to suit any price range are to be found in the region, from exclusive fishing lodges, right through to lower priced backpacker hostels.

Taupo Visitor Information

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