Okay, okay. Maybe I’m being a little harsh with the title. But I’m sure your visit to Taupo was probably more wow than mine.
Let’s start from the beginning, with an exciting little detour to Huka falls. That isn’t sarcasm, this part was actually good.
New Zealand is full of brilliantly blue waters. Lakes, pools, waterfalls…you name it, they have it. And Huka Falls is no exception.
The falls are vast and the volume of water which passes over the falls each second is seriously crazy. The vibrant blue colour is from the clear water reflecting blue light, but I’m afraid I can’t get much more technical than that! See for yourselves why this is such a popular spot for visitors…
Visiting Huka falls was only a quick stop and we were soon back on the big green bus heading over to Taupo where we stayed for just two nights.
The first day we decided to head over to ‘Spa Park‘ as we kept hearing about the natural hot springs around us, yet hadn’t actually visited any.
If you ever find yourself in the same spot, wondering over Spa Park – let me save you a trip. It’s quite a walk from Taupo town centre, plus the walk is all roadside, so not particularly scenic.
When you actually arrive at the park, things get a little better as the huge expanse of grass on a nice sunny day is certainly more pleasant than the tarmac you’ve just plodded along.
As far as the spa goes, not very impressive. Yes, it’s free. Yes, it’s quite exciting that the water is unexpectedly hot in places and you can lounge around in it. But and that’s a big but, many other people will have the same idea.
You end up sort of sharing a bath with a load of strangers and maybe even some dogs. Plus, the hot to cold water ratio is not in your favour. Like me, you may find yourself with one leg freezing cold and the other literally boiling, so you have to sort of spin around continually to balance things out. But hey, if that’s your thing go for it.
You’d definitely be better of paying to enter one of the actual spa places. Unlike English spa’s, they aren’t super expensive – as in NZ, they’re all natural. So go on, splurge on a little luxury and while you’re at it – let me know what it’s like!
Taupo Town Centre
To be very honest, by the time we got to Taupo I’d hit a bit of a wall, I’d had enough. When I’m in the real world i.e. not travelling, I’m a very independent gal. I love me time. That’s not to say I’m a total narcissist or anything, I’m just a total girl. Who needs space. And let me tell you when you’re on a group tour for two months, space is hard to find. When travelling Australia with my partner, I could venture off alone sometimes or, you know, take extra long washing my hair. But those hostel bathrooms? Privacy is a mere fantasy.
To get to the point, I opted out of the group activity in the evening. It was essentially a drinking session on a boat which seemed to be a huge success as everyone came back pretty plastered. Also, the sunset pictures from the boat looked dreamy, so I’m sure it’s worth doing.
I, on the other hand, went for a run. I ran around the public park, found some pretty rose gardens, and explored the beach where I could see everyone on the boat. Then I ran to dominos (hence the need for running) and watched the sunset from a picnic bench whilst munching on my pizza. It was pretty stunning but I didn’t take any photos because I don’t run with a camera. You’ll just have to imagine it!
Soon enough I was reunited with my rather inebriated friends and we all went to the pub that was conveniently just downstairs from our hostel (this happens more often than not).
We drank, we sang, we danced. I actually did take some hilarious photos here but they’re probably not appropriate for the blog I’m trying to create here! Anyway, ‘Me time’ was over and all was right with the world again.