Travelling New Zealand, you may either contemplate great and often breathtaking nature wonders or live thought some extreme man-made pastime ideas. You can also learn about the country heritage – the Maori culture and Western culture settlement history. Not including the local dishes, wine, and cheeses, of course.
One of those natural wonders you man contemplate is for sure Wai-O-Tapu, the so-called Thermal Wonderland. Wai-O-Tapu is located in the Taupo Volcanic Zone on the North Island of New Zealand. Wai-O-Tapu is a ring-fenced reservation covered with collapsed craters, colorful geothermal pools, bubbling mud pools, and dramatic geysers. The pools vary in size, shape, and color, with hues ranging from vibrant greens and oranges to deep blues and reds.
You walk a forest and bushes down and up the hill (the paths are defined and well-marked). From time to time, you stop at a lake or a crater of not-typical color from dark mud to candy green or blue. As many of the waters are hot, fumes are sometimes all around you.
The absolute highlight is the Champagne pool with its hot and sparkling deep blue-green water surrounded by orange fossils. Walking the paths of the Wai-O-Tapu, you will see it from a different perspective. How vicious it is you feel on your way back as you have to pass carefully by through fumes that come with its bubbles. Its colors are however, that seducing that you are in a desperate need to stay, watch and take photos. Yes, indeed, the champagne pool is toxic in the actual word’s meaning.
The Champagne pool of Wai-O-Tapu
The place is excellent for taking photos. The colors you see in pictures are the colors you see in reality. Wai-O-Tapu is on a definite must-see list while in New Zealand. Below some photo impressions made within only two hours of a slow walk. Below some foto impressions.
Wai-O-Tapu is a Maori name that translates to “sacred waters.” The name reflects the area’s importance to the local Maori people, who have a deep spiritual connection to the land and its geothermal features.
The area around Wai-O-Tapu has been considered a sacred site for centuries, with the Maori people using the hot springs and geothermal features for bathing, cooking, and healing. The Maori people also believe that the area is home to spiritual entities, including guardians and ancestors, and that the natural phenomena are a manifestation of their presence.