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Top 10 photo locations in Taupo

Lake Taupo has picture perfect scenery - from geothermal wonderlands to thundering waterfalls to barren moonscapes.

1. Huka Falls

Huka Falls is a thundering 11-metre high waterfall is the most visited and photographed natural attraction in New Zealand. It's not hard to see why! The sheer volume of water flowing over the falls amounts to 220,000 litres per second - enough to fill one Olympic sized swimming pool in 11 seconds! Enjoy the walking tracks alongside the river and wander around the different viewing platforms, taking in the falls from all angles.

2. Tokaanu Wharf

Back in the 1880s, there were few roads in the Lake Taupo region. Goods were shipped across Lake Taupo from Tokaanu Wharf. Regular boat services stopped in the 1920s but this piece of Kiwi history lives on! In 2003, the wharf was lovingly restored with original beams and decking. The calm waters and stunning mountain background make for a great photos. 

3. Codger's Rock

Codgers Rock was so named because two senior members of the trail maintenance team were having their picture taken and the rest of the group said 'Hey look at those two codgers (English slang for old men) on the rock'! The location has now become a favourite rest and photo stop for mountain bikers and walkers along the Kawakawa section of the Great Lake Trail. Codger's Rock is a 3km climb from Kawakawa Bay up onto Te Kauwae headland, or 6km if you are walking or riding from Kinloch.

4. Maori Rock Carvings

The Mine Bay Maori Rock Carvings on have been hailed as one of New Zealand’s most extraordinary artworks. Towering 14-metres above the deep water of Lake Taupo, the carvings have become one of the North Island of New Zealand's biggest tourist attractions.

The carvings are only accessible by water. You can kayak, sail or cruise out to see them and take that insta worthy photo daily from Taupo Harbour. 

5. Sunsets over Lake Taupo

There's nothing quite like a sunset and we reckon a Lake Taupo sunset are one of the best. A glassy lake framed by snow-capped volcanic peaks and a wide, blue sky slowly transforming to orange, pink, red and purple. Head to Taupo lakefront to with a picnic or one of the lakefront restaurants with a glass of wine and get ready for mother nature to put on a show.

6. Mt Tauhara

The trail to the top of Mt Tauhara is a popular climb with locals and visitors. This 2.5km trail climbs to the summit at 1,088 metres, offering panoramic views over Lake Taupo and the central North Island. It is challenging and steep in places, so be prepared by wearing sturdy footwear and taking plenty of water, snacks and warm clothing as there is often a cool wind at the summit. It will definitely be worth the effort! 

7. Tongariro Alpine Crossing

Often described as New Zealand’s best one day alpine trek, this 19.4 km tramp is simply breath-taking and covers some of the most dramatic landscapes you’ll ever see. A cold mountain spring, lava flow, an active crater, steam vents, emerald coloured lakes and magnificent views combine to make this an enjoyable and memorable day experience. Make sure to give yourself enough time to stop, soak it in and capture it's many stunning photo stops. Find out more about the Tongariro Alpine Crossing here.

8. Taupo Street Art

Walk down the back alleys of Taupo towncentre and you will be rewarded with some incredible original pieces of street art. It's all thanks to the Graffiato festival which is held in the town every Labour Weekend. Take a walk around the town and feast your eyes. 

9. Tongariro River

An anglers paradise, the Tongariro River weaves its way from the sacred mountains of the Tongariro National Park through to Lake Taupo. From raging rapids, to babbling brooks it has many faces and personas. And they are all beautiful. You can cycle or bike along the Tongariro River Trail, try trout fishing or have a white water rafting adventure. 

10. #LOVETAUPO lettering

Do you #LOVETAUPO? It is hard not to when you see this giant lettering! Located on Taupo town's lakefront, the #LOVETAUPO lettering has quickly become an icon of the town and a must-stop photo spot.



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