Helicopter flight to White Island Volcano with Rotorua Cultural Experience
Nature's Fire and Fury Tour: Volcanic Expedition with Māori Culture Experience TR 71
This full-day luxury shore excursion from Tauranga offers a once in a life time opportunity to fly to White Island by helicopter and walk to the edge of an active crater, over hot streams, past steaming volcanic vents and colorful sulfur formations, before viewing a privately owned volcano’s long abandoned mining ruins.
This somewhat lunar experience on New Zealand’s only permanently active off shore volcano is breathtaking and when combined with the helicopter flight above the lakes and the Bay of Plenty is a unique and surreal lifetime experience. Land transport is provided by a 7-seat 2016 Mercedes vehicle which will pick you up at the port of Tauranga transporting you to your helicopter and on return from the volcano will take you to Whakarewarewa – The Living Māori Village for lunch and a privately guided tour. Reserved front seats to watch a cultural performance including the Haka. Along with a traditional Hangi Meal (Maori traditional Meal).
This discerning luxury tour itinerary is for cruise ship passengers disembarking at the port of Tauranga. You will travel in a Mercedes 2016 seven seater passenger vehicle and journey to Rotorua to your helicopter for a flight to New Zealand’s only permanently active volcano, "White Island". Arriving overhead the volcano you will enjoy aerial views of the active crater before landing on this lunar like surface. Here embark upon a leisurely guided tour of the island's crater floor to view active steam vents 'fumaroles', hot streams, vibrant sulphur formations and the steaming crater. This landscape is constantly changing as the activity forms new features and removes old ones. The crater lake changes in depth and temperature so that from one day to the next the landscape is different.
Part of your tour includes a walk through crumbling mining ruins to view the weathered remains of what was a working factory built in 1923 and abandoned in 1933. Tours on this privately owned volcano are conducted by your pilot / guide whose wealth of knowledge about the island's history and geology enhances the experience. Your return flight to and from the island takes in aerial views of the wider Bay of Plenty giving ample opportunity for stunning photographs.
Upon landing back in Rotorua your Mercedes vehicle will drive you to Whakarewarewa Valley to Te Puia where you will encounter bubbling mud, pools of boiling water and stunning geysers. The Pōhutu geyser is the star of the show! Pōhutu (‘poor-hoo-too’) is the largest active geyser in the southern hemisphere. She erupts once or twice every hour and sometimes reaches heights of 30 metres (100 feet). Pōhutu means ‘constant splashing’ in Māori. For hundreds of years, the many geothermal hot pools in Te Whakarewarewa Valley have allowed the Māori people to use hot water for cooking, washing, bathing and preparing flax. "Ngāraratuatara" This cooking pool is named after the tuatara (too-a-tah-rah), an ancient lizard-like reptile only found in New Zealand.
Today, Ngārara-tuatara is used for Ingo, a unique cooking experience where fresh ingredients are lowered into the boiling water in baskets woven from flax. This cooking style is the same as locals have been using here for centuries and the hāngi (haa-ngee) is another popular Māori cooking style. You will experience this as lunch is included in your tour adding another unique experience to your day.
You will have a Private "Whakarewarewa – The Living Māori Village" guide to explain this strange and thought provoking landscape before being seated in reserved seating to watch a concert and cultural performance that will not just move and entertain you, but enable you to ‘get inside’ there fascinating culture. Surrounded by the beautiful carvings of their ancestors, you will experience entertaining stories told through song and dance, with plenty of surprises thrown in.