Rotorua – the adventure capital of the North Island

Whilst it might have a way to go to catch Queenstown as the adventure capital of New Zealand (and possibly the world!), there is still plenty going on in Rotorua for the thrill-seekers out there. Whether it’s bungy jumping, zorbing, white water rafting or maybe something a bit different like the Shweeb, Rotorua has a lot going on.

We decided to take a closer look at Rotorua’s top five attractions for thrill seekers.

1.      Rotorua Canopy Tours

Rotorua Canopy Tours
Rotorua Canopy Tours – some serious treetop adventure!

One of the most popular activities in the city is Rotorua Canopy Tours. This is New Zealand’s only native forest zipline canopy tour and is an awesome experience for thrill seekers. The 3 hour canopy tour will take you on a 1.2 km network of 6 ziplines, swingbridges and treetop platforms suspended 22 metres above the forest floor. Whilst it’s a thrilling adventure, there is also heaps to learn on the tour as you will find out all about the native forest and birds – two for the price of one!

Find out more: http://canopytours.co.nz/

2.      Whitewater Rafting and Kayaking

The world's highest commercially rafter waterfawll
Whitewater rafting on the Kaituna River with River Rats

There are plenty of places where you can go whitewater rafting in New Zealand but Rotorua is definitely one of our favourites. One of the most popular tour operators for both rafting and kayaking is River Rats. These guys offer a number of different rafting experiences from the more gentle grade 2-4 rapids to the exhilarating grade 5 rapids. The highlight is a trip on the Kaituna River. Located just 15 minutes from Rotorua, Rover Rats will take you on an adventure down the highest commercially rafted waterfall in the world – now that will definitely give you some bragging rights!

Find out more: http://www.riverrats.co.nz/

3.      Skyline Rotorua

Take the Luge back down from the top of the Skyline Rotorua
Take the Luge back down from the top of the Skyline Rotorua

This one is a bit of a cheat as it encompasses more than one adventure activity! For some, the gondola ride up to the top of the Skyline complex is thrilling enough but once you get up there, the fun begins when you decide how to get down! Two of the best ways are either by mountain bike at the Skyline Gravity Park or maybe you fancy giving the luge a try. Whichever option you choose, you’re in for some thrills and spills as you let gravity do its work and hurtle down the hillside as quickly as you can. Awesome!

Find out more: https://www.skyline.co.nz/en/rotorua/

4.      Kawarau Jet Rotorua

Jetboating in Rotorua
High speed thrills and spills onboard the Kawarau Rotorua Jetboat

Jetboating is like a rite of passage in New Zealand. There are a few places you can give it a whirl and Rotorua is up there with the best. Visit iconic landmarks like Kawaha Point, Mokoia Island and Sulpher Bay as the professional drivers thrill you with speed, spins and adrenaline. There are a range of packages available all of which are guaranteed to leave you breathless whilst also giving you the opportunity to learn more about the local area and culture. Another great two for one activity!

Find out more: http://www.nzjetboat.co.nz/

5.      Agroventures Adventure Park

Give the Shweeb a try at Agroventures Adventure Park
Give the Shweeb a try at Agroventures Adventure Park

Another one that’s a bit of a cheat, a visit to Agroventures Adventure Park should be a ‘must do’ for all thrill seekers visiting Rotorua. There are five awesome activities to choose from including: jet boating, bungy, Shweeb, Freefall Xtreme and Swoop. The first two you may already know about but the last three activities offer up something a bit different. Shweeb is the world’s one and only monorail raceway where you get the opportunity to race against your mates or the clock. Freefall Xtreme is the closest you will get to flying without jumping out of a plane as you get to act like a superhero in their giant wind column. Swoop is an awesome super swing that will have you hurtling head first at a rapid rate of knots – a thrill seeker’s paradise!

Find out more: http://www.agroventures.co.nz/

Bonus

6.      Zorb Rotorua

Zorbing is a perennial favourite in Rotorua
Zorbing is a perennial favourite in Rotorua

We couldn’t have a list of the best adventure activities in Rotorua without mentioning Zorbing. Rotorua is the home of Zorbing and where it all began. The basic premise is simple: climb into a giant inflatable ball and hurl yourself down a hillside! You can even choose to try the wet option which basically means your inflatable ball is also full of water, helping you to cool down on a hot summers’ day! We’ve done it  on many occasions and it never fails to thrill – make sure you stop by the next time you’re in town if you’ve never tried it before!

Find out more: https://www.zorb.com/

So there you have it – our top 5 adventure activities to add to your list of things to do the next time you’re in Rotorua. We’d love to see your pictures so make sure you send them into our Facebook page so we can see what a great time you had!

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