Written by Wesley Klehm

te puia
Te Puia

Not too far down the road through some more gorgeous hills, valleys, and forests was the town of Rotorua.  Our first stop here was Te Puia.  This was the thermal area that had bubbling mud pools and geysirs.  Sterling was particularly entertained by the mud bubbles.  The geysir was erupting almost constantly and was amazing looking.  The rest of the park was filled with other little mud pools that were everywhere.  Near the end of the walk through the park was a “cooking pool” where a Maori guy was cooking a skirt.  The water hardened and colored the leaves of the plant he was dunking and they make skirts out of it.  We also found some Maoris putting some ham down in a cement pit in the sidewalk.  They were cooking dinner and they said it takes about 2 hours and it’s cooked naturally from the thermal stuff.  Awesome!

Making skirts
Making skirts

We then tracked down our bed and breakfast.  It was one of the oldest buildings in Rotorua but was adorable.  The manager was a super excited guy who told us all about what we can do in town (like seeing the Maori village) and was interested in everywhere we had gone and were planning to go.

Traditional Maori village
Traditional Maori village

We went for a walk to find dinner.  It was a bit chilly and i unfortunately forgot the map of the downtown, so we had a hard time finding the restaurant we’d been recommended.  But eventually we found the Fat Dog and had some dinner.  It was pretty mediocre but was better than some things we’d had in NZ. We then walked back to some lodge and verified we could go to the spa we were intending to go to.  The spa was amazing.  I’ve never really been that relaxed before.  There were several pools varying in temperature.  Some of the pools were supposed to relax muscles and help skin and stuff.  We found a pool that was the perfect temperature and we both very nearly fell asleep.  We just laid there in the shallow water staring up at the stars and moon, completely and utterly relaxed.


3 hours later we dried off and went back to the hotel and went to sleep.  What a day!

In the redwood forest in Rotorua
In the redwood forest in Rotorua

Click here for all of our pictures.

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