• Donna Thomas CTC, 118 South Bellevue Avenue, Langhorne Borough Pa 19047
  • +1 800-367-5494 | +1 215-741-5155 | Fax: 1-888 256 3059

16 Years as Travel and Leisure Magazine Top Travel Expert for New Zealand and Australia

Travel and Leisure says: "Donna Thomas has explored many corners of North and South Islands in search of hidden gems. She can help birdwatchers see the endangered yellow-eyed penguin or send avid trekkers on guided hikes to secret waterfalls in Paparoa National Park."


Huka Lodge - Taupo

Huka Lodge is located in Taupo, in the central North Island of New Zealand and is the only "Leading Small Hotels of the World" property in the country. Huka Lodge is surrounded by magnificent natural beauty. The crystal clear waters of Lake Taupo are fed by mountain streams and are home to some of the most sought-after Rainbow trout in the world. The spectacular and mighty cascades of water forming the Huka Falls are a short walk from Huka Lodge, on the banks of the Waikato River.

Situated in seven hectares of park-like grounds Huka Lodge has only 20 guest suites all just 20 metres from the river amongst mature trees. The suites are very secluded, offering every comfort - from mini-bar to walk-in dressing room. The suites are spacious, light and very peaceful with slatted wooden, outdoor terraces. The bathrooms all have under-floor heating. A sunken bath is complemented by a separate shower and double handbasins. The Owners Cottage offers a high level of privacy and comfort and is ideal for a private party of guests. All Huka Lodge facilities are available including dining.

The cottage features four double bedrooms and ensuite bathrooms. It is beautifully appointed with every comfort, rustic antique furniture, log fire and a small kitchen Driving by rental car or limousine generally takes three hours from Auckland, four and a half hours from Wellington and one hour from Rotorua. Huka Helicopter transfers from Auckland, Wellington and Rotorua. Enjoy the scenic wonders of the central North Island and be delivered to the front lawn of Huka Lodge. Auckland to Huka Lodge - seventy five minutes, Wellington to Huka Lodge - ninety five minutes, and Rotorua to Huka Lodge twenty five minutes Scheduled domestic flights travel daily to Taupo from Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

Your arrival point at Huka Lodge is also where guests gather to breakfast before setting off for their day’s activities, to have a drink before dinner and to sit beside the log fire reading a magazine while gazing toward the river from time to time.

A beautifully appointed room with panoramic views of the Waikato River and toward Huka Falls, the Lodge Room is a major focus. Guests are drawn to the magnificent fire, comfortable seating and its rich warm ambience.

The Lodge Room is used by guests frequently during the day and the scene for cocktail hour each evening. The terraces provide quiet spots to sit in the sun and relax during the day. It is always tempting to slip away to the Library with a book - this room can also be used for private dining in the evening.

The dining room is spacious in its proportions and elegant in design. A place where guests come together for good food and fine wine punctuated with easy laughter and conversation. Wherever you choose to dine, by the outdoor fireplace, on the terrace, or at a private table under the stars you find unique food, an extensive wine selection and impeccable service. Huka Lodge are happy to go to any length to provide an appropriate and memorable setting.

Explore the park-like gardens and flower borders or soak in the hot pools. Enjoy a game of tennis on the all weather court. Relax playing a game of petanque. A short walk beyond the gates brings you to the spectacular Huka Falls. After a hearty breakfast at the Lodge, set off early for a superb day on the Lake. Lake Taupo lies in the very heart of the North Island of New Zealand. Fed by numerous rivers and streams, originating from mountain streams, Lake Taupo has the most beautiful crystal clear waters.

The Lake is enclosed to the south by a trio of mountains - Mt Ruapehu, Mt Ngauruhoe and Mt Tongariro. The northern boundary is bordered by rolling hills and vast pine forests.

The number of potential recreational activities is vast - the famous fishing, of course, draws many to Lake Taupo's shores. A boat can take you to the many isolated bays and coves fringing the great Lake.

You may choose to try a spot of harling in the hope of catching a trophy trout, picnic in your own bay, waterski, swim, cruise by the unique Maori rock carvings or take a walk onshore.

Sunset on Lake Taupo is magnificent and best admired from an area known as the Western Bays. A barbecue on the beach can bring a day on the lake to a fitting conclusion - the stars are clearer than you can ever remember, the deep quiet only punctuated by the gentle lapping of the water.

A half or full day trip using a powerful jet boat to take you to explore fishing pools normally inaccessible to anglers. A similar trip is also available by raft on the famous Tongariro River.

Lake Taupo provides a truly aquatic playground and water skiing punctuated by swimming and picnicking is a wonderful way to spend the day. In spectacular crisp air with huge views why not try sky diving - freefall from 9,000 feet and truly know the sheer exhilaration such adventure brings.

A fast thrilling jet boat ride on the mighty Waikato River. An exciting and memorable adventure experience on one of the best of New Zealand's famous rivers. Fabulous day trips on either the Tongariro or Rangitaiki Rivers. Lots of adrenalin, lots of fun and an abundance of white water and rapids.

Depending on the season Taupo can offer hunters Red and Sika deer, duck shooting, turkey shooting and wild boar hunting. Again in magnificent, wild and challenging countryside with the best guides the area has to offer.

Again, the Waikato River is the scene for this 150 foot jump. An absolute must for all genuine daredevils and certainly one of life's achievements.

A great way to explore some splendid landscape is to take a guided trek on horse back through local bush trails.

Several great yachts are available for charter on Lake Taupo. Lie back and admire the beautiful scenery, or if you prefer, take a more active role. For a short 2.5 hour sail or as long as you like - the choice is yours.

There are eight golf courses available within a 30 minute drive of Huka Lodge. The nearby Wairakei International Golf Course is a favourite with guests and the venue for the popular 'Huka Lodge Classic' Golf Tournament held every year. Contact Reservations for information on this tournament.

Helicopter Scenic Flights ranging from 30 minutes around Taupo's geothermal, lake and river regions to more extensive flights around the mountains and streams of New Zealand's forest and World Heritage National Parks.

Limousine tours are available and Rotorua is only an hour's drive away is New Zealand's geothermal wonderland and is a major international tourist destination. A day trip to Rotorua could include visits to thermal attractions, The Agrodome, Rainbow Springs and the Buried Village, to name a few. In Taupo the Craters of the Moon and Wairakei Geothermal Borefield Information Centre and Power Station are two interesting places.

There are exciting wilderness escapes with kayaking, abseiling and/or rock climbing. All under the guidance of experienced people selected by Huka Lodge.

There are charted walking routes all noted for their natural scenery, signage detail and safety. Designed for various fitness levels and offering a number of different time options for people who enjoy walks.

Guides can also take you on special flora and fauna walks and share their knowledge of all those things so unique to the New Zealand ecosystem.

Take a mountain bike and explore some forest trails with your own picnic or join a guided four-wheel motor bike tour for a slightly faster pace.

Your helicopter awaits on the front lawn of Huka Lodge. From here you fly along the eastern edge of Lake Taupo towards the majestic Kaimanawa mountain ranges. As you approach, sit back in awe as the alpine scenery unfolds before you. Once your pilot has set the aircraft down beside the crystal waters of the Rangatiki River, you may take a short walk to one of the many secluded pools which are home to some of New Zealand's largest Rainbow trout. This is nature at its best. Re-board your helicopter for the remainder of the flight, which continues west along the Kaimanawas towards Mt Tongariro, Mt Ngauruhoe and the snow-capped peaks and crater lake of Mt Ruapehu. On a clear day visibility exceeds 50km. Descend from the mountains, head towards the Western Bays of Lake Taupo where your pilot will set the aircraft down on a remote rock shelf where a well-appointed motor launch, a sumptuous lunch and a chilled bottle of New Zealand wine awaits you. En route back to Taupo you will have the opportunity to troll for trout or you may wish to try your hand at clay pigeon shooting or swim in the crystal-clear waters of Lake Taupo.

On arrival back at the Taupo Boat Harbour, a courtesy vehicle awaits to transfer you back to Huka Lodge. White Island from Huka Lodge is a journey that includes some of New Zealand's most beautiful scenery and prominent volcanic highlights. Along the way we enjoy views of "The Wai O Tapu Thermal reserve".

Mount Tarawera appears approximately half way into the journey and from above the now dormant volcano you enjoy expansive views of mighty domes and craters formed during the 1886 eruption. Leaving Mount Tarawera you track past Mount Edgecombe before crossing the coast for White Island. On the Island we guide you on a tour, conditions permitting, that takes us past steaming fumaroles and bubbling activity to the edge of the crater lake. After leaving the Island the return trip can take in the thermal activity of the Rotorua area and the Hydro Electric Dam facilities on the famous Waikato River, before landing back on the front lawn of Huka Lodge.

Should the rigours of an active day mean you are in need of a little help or it was simply a very long flight, Huka Lodge have fully trained masseuses available in the privacy of your own suite.

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