On sunny days, it’s often smooth as glass and as blue as the sky above. When it’s overcast, it can be wreathed in mist and dark green like pounamu (Māori for jade).
Whatever the weather, a scenic boat cruise by launch, yacht or steamboat always has plenty to see. From native water birds, beautiful bush-clad coves, the evocative Mine Bay Māori rock carvings that tell the story of the great Māori high priest Ngātoroirangi, or even just the clear, rippling water with its amazing depth visibility.
For those with a taste for adventure, a jet boat trip on the Waikato River combines thrilling action with the chance to see spectacular natural features like the Huka Falls, Aratiatia Rapids or the ethereal Tutukau Gorge up close.