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O Huka Falls Rd,
Wairakei Tourist Park, Taupo.
Telephone: 07 374 8375
POWER OF THE PLANET
Bringing to life the explosive
past and present volcanic and
geothermal features of the Taupo
Volcanic Zone. Discover the the area's
fascinating volcanic and geothermal
secrets through hands on int eractive
displays that make learning both
easy & fun for all ages.
'Taupo's Friendliest Motel'
All your accommodation
250 Lake Tce, SH 1, Taupo Ph: 0-7-378 2715 Fax: 0-7-378 2390
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.chelmswood.co.nz
Reservations: 0800 238 238
• 36 units: comprising of Economy Studios,
Lake View Studios (with in-room thermal pool)
and Family Suites each with a private thermal pool.
Sky Guest Select 40 channels
• Heated outdoor swimming pool,
spacious Redwood Sau na and SPA pool
• BBQ area, fuction room & children's play a rea.
Ta riff: $99-$325 per unit
Flights range from the 10-minute long A Taste
of Taupō at $75 per person to the two- hour
Orakei Korako flight at $265 per person which
takes in Taupō Bay, Acacia Bay, Rangatira Pt,
Whakaipo Bay, Craters of the Moon, farmland and
forests, to Orakei Korako. Land on the Waikato
River, walk through the geothermal paradise then
back up and over Huka Falls and the town.
There are also flights available to Rotorua and
White Island, along with the Taupō Trifecta, a
three-hour experience which covers Taupō Bay,
Boat Harbour, Craters of the Moon, farmland and
forest, Orakei Korako. Travel through canyons
and scenery otherwise inaccessible and then
experience the famous jet boat spin. Bookings
are essential for this flight. Five to 15 year olds are
half price and under fours are free. Family rates are
I have to say, Taupō looks pretty cool from the air.
It is not something we all get to do, see our town
from a different perspective; you get to see parts
of the area you might not otherwise get to, which
makes it worthwhile in my book.
I went up in the air with Neil Kemp from Taupō's
Floatplane and was lucky enough to tag along on
a trip to Orakei Korako with Karon and Bill Coombs
from the Blue Mountains in Sydney.
I had never been in a floatplane before and
found it a little strange to be taxiing along the
water rather than a runway.
But I needn't have worried and the view over the
lake was much nicer than any airport I've been to.
Karon and Bill were staying in Rotorua and had
come down to Taupō for the day.
"We don't have a lot of time and sometimes the
only way to see a place is from the air, " Karon said.
Neil flew us out over Acacia Bay and Rangatira
Pt and showed us the Maori carvings before we
headed out past Kinloch.
On our way back we flew over the Huka Falls and
We landed on the Waikato River and since the
Orakei Korako trip includes time for passengers to
explore, Bill and Karon set off for a walk while Neil
and I enjoyed the sunshine.
Neil is one of the owners of Taupō's Floatplane
and has been flying floatplanes for 12 years.
The business is the only one in Taupō that has
floatplanes. The only other one in the North Island
is in Rotorua.
One of the most popular trips on offer is the
trip out to Mt Ruapehu. "Even though I've seen it
a thousand times you see something new every
time, " said Neil, adding that while some days he
can do the same trip multiple times it is "hardly
While out in the plane Neil spoke about the
geography of the area using his own local
knowledge - he is born and bred here - but did
admit he used to fly a volcanologist around who
he may have got some tips from.
Neil estimates New Zealanders make up around
30 percent of his clientele and says he gets all
kinds of people of all ages come for a flight.
And he has seen it all, from having a passenger
propose over the top of Mt Ruapehu to having
people mow words into a paddock and then have
Neil fly them over the top.
"I've done everything you can imagine over the
past few years."
Novel view of Taupō sights
Taupō Times reporter Caitlin Madden took the opportunity to get a birds-eye view of the Taupō area
with a trip in the Taupō floatplane.
Travel through canyons and
scenery otherwise inaccessible
and then experience the
famous jet boat spin.
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