Waimangu Volcanic Valley - Waimangu, Rotorua New Zealand. Warbrick Terrace, The Emerald Pools, Inferno Crater, and Frying Pan Lake.
Emerald Pools at Waimangu, Rotorua
Warbrick Terrace at Waimangu, Rotorua
Inferno Crater at Waimangu, Rotorua


In 1886 Mount Tarawera erupted in a devastating explosion of ash and lava, ripping the mountain in two and gouging a 17 kilometre rift into the landscape. Lake Rotomahana swelled to twenty times its size and the seven craters that make up the geothermal utopia that is Waimangu, were created.

Waimangu Valley, being the youngest geothermal site in the world, shows off the beauty left behind after a volcanic eruption. Thirty years after the explosion, plant life returned in abundance and the hot pools and springs display multicoloured rock and amazing coloured water

In the Maori language Waimangu means "black water". The area was once the location of the most powerful geyser in the world; spewing black mud 460 metres (1,500 ft) into the air. While the geyser became extinct in 1904, this beautiful valley still bears the name Waimangu. The Waimangu Volcanic Valley is a 20 minute trip south from Rotorua that must not be missed.

The Emerald Pools

The Emerald Pools sit in one of the craters left behind by the 1886 Tarawera eruption, nestled amongst stunning native bushland. The lush green colour of the pools is the result of sphagnum moss, once used in healing for its extracting properties.

Warbrick Terrace

Former Waimangu guide Alfred Warbrick placed sandbags to slow the discharge of a spring, resulting in this visual masterpiece. The terrace is a rolling formation of what looks like multicoloured liquid rock; its colours a blend of gold, black, grey and rust. The unusual colouration is the result of algae, iron oxide, hydroxide and silicate deposits.

Steaming Crater Lakes

Also worth a look are the other unique and beautiful crater lakes in the valley. Watch steam rise from the tantalisingly blue Inferno Crater, and hear the crackling and sizzling of Frying Pan Lake.

See a complete list of Waimangu Volcanic Valley activities.

This week's featured activities in Waimangu Volcanic Valley are:

Featured Activities

Waimangu Volcanic Valley Self Guided Tours

Waimangu Volcanic Valley Self Guided Tours

Day Tour - Waimangu Volcanic Valley - Starting from NZ $37.00 per adult

Prime Rotorua tourist attraction, Waimangu Volcanic Valley offers self guided tours through spectacular geothermal activity in the world's youngest geothermal system. Waimangu Volcanic Valley is home to wonderful plant and bird life, thermal hot springs, steaming cliffs, volcanic craters and many more geothermal features.We are just 20 minutes South of Rotorua and 40 minutes North of Taupo. More...

Rotorua Eco Thermal Small Group Full-Day Tour

Rotorua Eco Thermal Small Group Full-Day Tour

All-day Coach Tour - Rotorua - Starting from $295.00 per person

Tour Rotorua's most popular geothermal parks and colorful lakes on a day trip led by a local naturalist guide. You'll see the Lady Knox Geyser erupt, visit the Lake Tarawera lookout and see boiling mud pools and hot springs at Wai-O-Tapu. Along the way, you'll learn all about volcanology, New Zealand's stunning flora and fauna, and Maori history from your naturalist guide. More...

Mount Tarawera Volcanic Adventure by Helicopter

Mount Tarawera Volcanic Adventure by Helicopter

Helicopter Tour - Rotorua - Starting from $695.00 per person

By Helicopter , combine the thrill of landing on Mount Tarawera (for an approximate 20 minute guided walk with your pilot) with a flight that includes spectacular aerial views of our stunning crater lakes, the renowned Tarawera Falls and the vibrant Waimangu and Wai-O-Tapu geothermal reserves. This tour highlights these amazing features unique to this region because of their location on our Faultline relative to the Pacific Rim of Fire. More...

Private Volcanic Rotorua Day Trip from Auckland

Private Volcanic Rotorua Day Trip from Auckland

Day Tour - Auckland - Starting from $400.00 per person

Explore the most spectacular volcanic features of Rotorua with this flexible full-day tour from Auckland. This tour starts off with a private guided tour of either Waimangu Volcanic Valley, or Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland. Add to this your choice of one other activity (the driver can help you pick which one). Enjoy dinner at the famous Eat St before returning to Auckland. More...

Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland Option to add Waimangu, Hobbiton or Whakarewarea

Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland Option to add Waimangu, Hobbiton or Whakarewarea

Thermal Spa & Hot Springs - Rotorua - Starting from $85.00 per person

Design your own ideal day with a full-day or half-day tour to Rotorua attractions and Hobbiton.  Experience the must-see half day geothermal wonders of Rotorua at the Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland. This convenient tour is fully customisable. 

All Tours also include a stop to see the Lady Knox Geyser Erupt before heading into Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland to enjoy a self guided walk around, exploring all the unique lakes, pools, craters and walkways that the park has to... More...

Wai Ora Lakeside Spa ResortWai Ora Lakeside Spa Resort - Hotel, Luxury Accommodation, Luxury Resort, Resort.

New Zealand's only Cultural Destination Spa Resort. Stay and indulge yourself in our 4.5 star luxury, lakeside...

Waimangu Volcanic Valley Self Guided ToursWaimangu Volcanic Valley Self Guided Tours - Day Tour - Waimangu Volcanic Valley. Starting from NZ $37.00 per adult.

Visit a prime Rotorua tourist attraction, the world's youngest geothermal system and the unique steaming landscapes and...


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