3 Fun-filled Activities for Families traveling to New Zealand’s Rotorua
April 08, 2017
Kia Ora! Browsing through my travel albums, and I realised I’ve missed out on introducing fun activities for families traveling to Rotorua. The town is well known for erupting geysers, bubbling mud pools, and natural hot springs, but there are exciting attractions that are family-friendly as well. Here’s an insight to 3 attractions in Rotorua best enjoyed with families.
Just a mere 10 minutes’ drive from Rotorua city centre brings you to 350-acres of lush farmland which belongs to Agrodome Farm. Their world acclaimed farm show stars a cast of talented animals, with interesting names created for their sheep. Showcasing 19 breeds of sheep, families will witness a live sheep shearing demonstration and a fun sheep auction with bidding from the floor and audience participation. Be amazed by Agrodome’s remarkable farm dogs as they demonstrate their ability to respond to commands and keep those sheep and ducks in line!
If you’re courageous enough, volunteer yourself and jump up on stage for the opportunity to feed the baby lambs or even hand-milk a cow. The farm show runs about an hour, and there are 3 shows per day, specifically at 9.30am, 11am and 2.30pm. Commentary is available during the show in a number of languages on request. Remember to request for it at the time of your booking.
Look forward to petting and having your photo taken with cute lambs and other baby farm animals too. I joined the farm tour to explore the entire farm. The guide will stop the “tram” at particular places, and you’ll be allowed to feed cows and super adorable alpacas. During the tour, you’ll also get to sample juicy and sweet kiwi fruit juice and wine, as well as, honey that’s produced there. Time spent at Agrodome Farm is both educational for kids, and enjoyable for the family. My visit was a very pleasant one (probably ‘cause I’m an animal lover)!
Address: 141 Western Rd, Ngongotaha, Rotorua 3010, New Zealand
Opening Hours: 8.30am to 5pm daily
Contact: +64 7 357 1050
Farm Show $34.50 NZD (adult), $18 NZD (child), $90 NZD (family)
Farm Tour $48 NZD (adult), $24 NZD (child), $122 NZD (family)
Combo $66 NZD (adult), $33.60 NZD (child), $158 NZD (family)
Entry is free for infants 4 years old and below.
RAINBOW SPRINGS NATURE PARK
If you want to learn more about New Zealand’s native animals and spend quality time with your family, Rainbow Springs Nature Park is the place for you! Set amongst the native trees and beautiful forests of Rotorua, you’ll get to meet the creatures who call New Zealand home. They are special encounters held daily, which allow you to get closer than ever to some of the favourite park residents. It’s a must to join the Kiwi Encounter Behind the Scenes Tour to understand exactly how the team at the nature park is helping kiwi at the biggest kiwi hatchery in the world. Here’s the good news – every tour booked is a 100% donation to the kiwi conservation program!
Expect to get up close with animals like the water dragon, blue-tongued lizard, and other native reptiles, a variety of bird breeds such as lorikeets, rare parakeets, colourful parrots, and a couple of endangered North Island birds. There’s a upcoming School Holiday Pop-Up Encounter with Eels from 14 April to 30 April 2017. I dare you to try feeding an eel! There’s also a Bird Show where you’ll be introduced to many exotic bird species.
Besides interacting with animals, end your visit getting your adrenalin pumping at The Big Splash! Take your seat in one of the boats, and accelerate along the 9-minute ride! Children must be aged five and above, and be taller than 106cm. Children aged five and above who are between 106cm and 135cm must be accompanied by an adult. The adult needs to be seated next to the child and provide supervision during the full ride. This ride is open from 9.30am to 5.00pm daily, and the cost is already included in your entry ticket. Best thing is – you can ride it as many times as you wish!
Address: 192 Fairy Springs Rd, Fairy Springs, Rotorua 3015, New Zealand
Opening Hours: 8.30am to 10.30pm (Summer), 8.30am to 10pm (Winter), 8.30am to 5pm (Christmas Day)
Contact: 0800 724 626 or +64 7 350 0440
Ticket Pricing: For Day Pass, $40 NZD (adult), $20 NZD (child 3 to 15 years old), $99 NZD (family), and free entry for infant 2 years old and below.
ROTORUA GOVERNMENT GARDENS
Need a place to relax while letting your kids run free? Why not have a picnic at Rotorua Government Gardens? While the little ones are entertained at the playground nestled amongst the beautiful rose gardens, you can unwind at the Blue Baths. The warm waters of The Blue Baths pools are geothermally heated fresh (not mineral) water. The original Juvenile Pool is usually around 30°C whilst the other two hot soak pools vary between 37°C and 42°C. There’s also the Polynesian Spa which is New Zealand’s leading internationally acclaimed spa!
Other entertainment options include ball busters golf, bowling, croquet, and the Rotorua Museum. The sight is equipped with a 9-hole golf course, driving range, 18-hole mini putt, New Zealand’s first automatic American-style baseball batting cages and a licensed bar. I’d recommend an evening picnic as the sunset makes the entire garden very picturesque.
Hope these suggestions are useful to you guys who are traveling to Rotorua. Plan in advance so you can enjoy your trip to the fullest!