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Aratiatia Rapids Walk

» iSee
»» Outdoor Activities
»» Walks and Bikes Rides

Business Type: Walk


Aratiatia Rapids Walk, Taupo

Address: Huka Falls Road, SH1, Taupo Taupo & Tongariro


From the Huka Falls, cross the bridge and take the walking track to the left. The trail follows the Waikato River, leading behind the last viewing platform over Huka Falls before climbing to the cliff tops for glorious views of the Waikato River. From here, it drops back down to the river, leading to the Aratiatia hydro dam and rapids.

You can stop for a picnic area at Aratiatia Reserve.

Source: Great Lake Taupo

There are several excellent vantage points on the high rock bluffs that dominate this turbulent stretch of the river.

At Aratiatia the Waikato River falls naturally 28 metres in the space of one kilometre.

This surging water has been harnessed for environmentally-sustainable hydroelectric power.

There is a scenic reserve off Aratiatia Road which is used for recreational walking, mountain biking, sightseeing, and boating.

There are walking tracks and viewpoints, picnic areas, toilets, and a boat ramp.

A scenic two-hour hiking trail between Huka Falls and the Aratiatia Rapids offers excellent views of the Waikato River.

It passes through a 142 hectare reserve on the shores of Lake Aratiaitia at the top of the rapids.

The Aratiata Rapids were also used for a scene in Peter Jackson’s latest movie The Hobbit in which film crew dropped 20 to 25 barrels down the rapids from a dam's spill gates each time there was a dam release. The scene is part of an escape where Bilbo Baggins rescues the dwarfs from elves by hiding them in barrels which float downstream.

The scene was the only part of The Hobbit to be filmed in the area and don't worry - no actors or stunt crew were forced into the barrels.   


Starts at Huka Falls, SH1, Taupo, Central North Island

Photo Gallery

By <a href=>elbroka</a> on <a href=>Flickr</a>

By elbroka on Flickr

  • By  <a href=> bkoger </a> on <a href=>Flickr</a>
  • By  <a href=> gouldy </a> on <a href=>Flickr</a>
  • By  <a href=> pshaw </a> on <a href=>Flickr</a>
  • By  <a href=> bkoger </a> on <a href=>Flickr</a>

Click here for Slideshow. You can also click on any of the photos to start slideshow.

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