Overview of Rotorua in New Zealand The city of Rotorua is located in the Bay of Plenty area, south of the coastal city of Tauranga. It is set alongside Lake Rotorua and has a number of other lakes nearby such as Lake Rotoiti and Lake Tarawera. Rotorua is steeped in the proud history of Maori stemming back hundreds of years. If anyone wants to learn about the Maori culture I recommend visiting this location. There are many activities which families can take part in here and I will list some of them below. Natural Volcanic Spas Due to it being situated in a volcanic area Rotorua has many natural hot springs. The water of these hot springs is reported to be beneficial to one’s skin due to the minerals. One word of warning though; do not drink or submerge your head in these spas. The danger is actually minimal and problems extremely rare but the water can carry bacteria that may cause meningitis which is a very serious disease. So to be on the safe side I would not recommend anyone putting their head underwater in these hot springs. Maori Cultural Shows at Te Puia These shows are a must see as they are performed by Maori to show people about their culture. It is a great place to learn about the Maori people, their history and their culture. I recommend visiting the Carving School to see some wonderful Maori carvings. Rotorua Hangi Feast The Hangi is a traditional dinner and way of cooking for the Maori. Usually a selection of meats (a whole side of pork is very popular) and sea food is placed under the earth. It is cooked on hot rocks over many hours. This gives the food a unique smoked flavor which is served with a variety of vegetables, Maori bread and of course lots of desserts. I recommend going to one of these Hangi feasts which are usually combined with some kind of show including Maori singing and dancing. For those who are brave, some of the shows allow members of the public to join the Maori dancers on stage. Cycling Around Rotorua and the Lakes This is more of a personal choice as cycling is one of my hobbies but it still makes a good day out for the family and is a good way to get around Rotorua and their lakes. Bring or hire some bicycles for a day or longer and ride around the city of Rotorua and if you feel energetic then ride around Lake Rotorua. It’s a great way to see the various beautiful scenery of this area in a relaxed way. Another option is to bring or hire mountain bikes and ride to The Whakarewarewa Forest. This is where you can really get close to nature. This forest is one of the oldest mountain bike locations in New Zealand with views of the forest, the Rotorua lakes as well as various mountains.