|Orakei Korako Geothermal Area - Orakei Korako, The Hidden Valley, Rotorua New Zealand - Ruatapu Cave and Waiwhakaata, The Pool of Mirrors|
The Hidden Valley
Situated between Rotorua and Taupo, it is a 40 minute drive from Rotorua, but the wonders of
The Hidden Valley are well worth the trip!
A true gift from nature, Orakei Korako literally means "The Glittering Place of Adorning", a
place where Maori women used the hot springs to bath and beautify themselves for ceremonies, amongst
the glittering silica terraces. As as the local Maori once did, nature has adorned itself
spectacularly in this awe-inspiring park, its natural beauty preserved by isolation from the outside
Situated on the Waikato River as it enters Lake Ohakuri, The Hidden Valley is only accessible by
a boat service which departs on request. It really is an untouched paradise, retaining the
tranquillity and phenomenal beauty of what Lonely Planet described as "... possibly the best
thermal area in New Zealand and one of the world's finest".
The Wonders of the Valley
Enjoy views over boiling hot springs and mud pools and the wondrous silica terraces that form the
base of the valley. The terraces are believed to be the largest of their kind since the Tarawera
eruption destroyed the famous Pink and White Terraces in 1886.
Up to 35 active natural geysers erupt freely and unpredictably lasting. Orakei Korako remains the
largest and most variable geyser field in New Zealand. The most well known of these, the Diamond
Geyser, has eruptions that can last from a few minutes to many hours, ejecting boiling water as high
as 30 ft (9 metres) in the air.
Within The Hidden Valley is Ruatapu Cave, one of only two geothermal caves in known existence, a
rare experience and one not to miss! The cave, whose name means "Sacred Hole", extends 120 ft
(37 metres) down into the earth. Ruatapu hides a remarkable thermal hot pool at its bottom called
Waiwhakaata, meaning "pool of mirrors".
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