Generic filters
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Search in excerpt

Travel Guide

Turangi Guide - Things to See & Highlights

  • 4 minutes

Taupo, North Island

Turangi – Where New Zealand Holidays are Created

Turangi, with the Tongariro River in its backyard and the river’s rainbow trout is a fishing paradise. The fishing capital has National Trout Centre, Lake Taupo several kilometres away and Tauranga-Taupo River offering great fishing locations.

Enjoy easy access to Whakapapa ski fields, Tongariro Alpine Crossing trail and Tokaanu’s gem, the geothermal hot pools should be enough for the most jaded palate.

Outdoor enthusiasts the Tongariro River Trail is gloriously family friendly with numerous short sections or the challenge of a 15km mountain bike ride.

Mini guide

Why stay in Turangi, Central North Island, New Zealand?

Turangi is an ideal hub for holiday activities based around the central North Island plateau. Soak in the views of Lake Taupo. Enjoy the sights and sounds of a premier visitor destination a short distance away, Taupo but without the crowds. Turangi is a great place to stay when you are stretching your holiday budget to include special activities such as Taupo bungy jumping. And the best bit, there is plenty to do and see around Turangi.

Where is Turangi, New Zealand located?

Turangi is located on the flats of the Tongariro River and near the pristine Kaimanawa Ranges. Turangi is a natural base for international fly fishing fans intent on bagging a trophy trout. Turangi is relaxed gateway for visitors exploring Tongariro National Park’ s awe-inspiring beauty and adventures.

What is the best time to visit Turangi, North Island, NZ?

The best time to visit Turangi is year round as summer, the Tongariro River offers fly fishing, awesome walks through native bush and adventures in nearby Taupo. Winter wonders at Whakapapa ski field in the Tongariro National Park.

  1. Turangi Visitor Centre

The Turangi visitor centre has its own mini earthquake experience. Plus helpful staff to give you tips where to go and what to do around Turangi. The visitor centre situated at the southern end of Lake Taupo (Turangi town centre) is a gateway to the Tongariro National Park, Tongariro Alpine Crossing as well as ticket agent for the impulsive white water rafting half day tour you want to join. Look for the corrugated volcanic cone surrounding the entrance way and you’ve found the right spot.

Turangi visitor centre, New Zealand @TripAdvisor
@Turangi visitor centre
National Trout Centre, Turangi, New Zealand
National Trout Centre, Turangi
  1. National Trout Centre

National Trout Centre is out of town, a mere 3km down State Highway 1 and is a must do for families, fly fishing fans or visitors who relish the outdoors. The location is the Tongariro River, native bush juxtaposed with hydrangea bushes and trout swirling in the eddies of the streams. Trout are shimmering, bright glorious looking pin up fish whose glamour makes the Centre feel alive.

  1. Turangi walks and hikes

Turangi is home to tremendous walks and hikes from easy family strolls to multiple day tramps. Turangi is framed by Kaimanawa Forest Park and Tongariro National Park on the other side. Remember to check walks in the parks from the wheelchair accessible Tokaanu geothermal walk to hikes up to the summit of Mt Urchin to savour the views of Lake Taupo nestled in its forest setting.

And, of course the iconic New Zealand Great Walks, Tongariro Alpine Crossing.

Couple on wooden brown jetty on calm relaxing Lake Taupo, North Island, New Zealand, NZ
Lake Taupo, North Island
White water rafting, Turangi, New Zealand
White water rafting, Turangi
  1. Turangi water sports – adventure activities, Tongariro River

Rafting, kayaking or jet boating the river offers visitors adventure water sport entertainment.  Jet boating or rafting the river is one of the more popular tour attractions. Its exhilarating and immediate with a rush of pleasure as you navigate a fast flowing river. Tongariro River Rafting even takes guests to the local hot pools to get toasty warm in winter. You will paddle through the heart of the Great Lake Taupo region, enjoying stunning scenery you can only access by water. Towering pine forests, native bush and volcanic cliffs surround you on your epic Tongariro River journey.

Check out our article 10 best things to see in Turangi: must-visit attractions with a bucket activity list for you to share with family and friends.

  1. Tongariro River delta kayaking

Kayaking the delta area of the Tongariro River as it enters the vast expanse of Lake Taupo. The channels, swampy area and rich birdlife make this a magical place for kayaking. It is likely you will encounter dedicated fishing buffs spending a day on the lake.

Tongariro River walks, New Zealand
Picturesque Tongariro River
Soaring flight gull

Twitchers look out – NZ birds – black billed native gull

Look out for the black-billed gulls, easily identified by their long, thin black beaks. This gull is only found in New Zealand is an inland gull, nesting largely on braided river beds in the South Island. A small percentage has made the Turangi area home.

  1. Tongariro river fly fishing

The Tongariro delta is a prime spot for fly fishing. Catch fish as they prepare to enter the river to spawn. For the special fishing spot a local guide or your accommodation provider will give you tips. The delta is only accessible by boat with the nearest boat ramp at the Tokaanu Wharf. The well maintained concrete ramp is close to the Tokaanu Marina. Visitors will require the appropriate fish licences and permission to use the boat ramp.

Tokaanu ramp requires a ramp permit to use the Department of Internal Affairs’ facilities. Permits are available from most local dairies or service stations.

Fly fishing Tongariro River, Turangi, New Zealand
Fly fishing Tongariro River

There is boat river access via the Tokaanu southern ramp however care needs to be taken. This is adjacent to the original wooden jetty.

It’s a perfect day when Fly Fishing Guides Taupo Turangi Central North Island New Zealand NZ take guests to the secret spot where the trout run. A day with fellow dedicated fishing locals probably means you will return.

  1. Winter ski & snowboard from Turangi

Let’s get you on the slopes with the reasonably priced accommodation options in Turangi. The town is 45 minutes away from the largest winter sports fields on the slopes of Mt Ruapehu. Whakapapa is a veteran for winter holiday visitors with gondolas, chairlifts, cafes and equipment rental.


You really don’t need to even ski or snowboard, visit the highest cafe in New Zealand and people watch.

  1. Go South & explore Lake Rotoaira & Lake Otamangakau

Grab a selfie in a unique location at Lake Otamangakau  with yourself on a paddle board (SUP) at over 600 metres above sea leve. Amazing place, a created hydroelectric power lake and a sweet spot for trout fishing. Lake Rotoaira is the location of the rugby All Blacks haka. Visit the spot where the chant began.

Lake Rotoaira seen from Tongariro volcano in the New Zealand
Lake Rotoaira seen from Tongariro volcano in the New Zealand
@Turangi Golf Club
@Turangi Golf Club
  1. Turangi golf club

Where passionate locals formed a golf club in 1971 without greens / golf course. Today enjoy The Tūrangi Golf Course with its 18 holes, par 72 from both tees. The length from the white tees is 5738 metres and 5145 metres from the yellow tees. The course is reasonably flat and has water features and good tree coverage. Autumn is a spectacular time with the tree foliage showing amazing colours. Visitors are always welcome. There is a range of electric and petrol carts available for hire at the club. Please contact the club to book in advance to secure a cart.


Lake Taupo side road exploration – Turangi to Taupo.

Turangi is a short scenic drive away from Lake Taupo. Pass beaches, camping grounds and turnoffs to the Great Lake (Taupo). Turn left and follow the road to quiet places where pumice beaches are virtually empty and enjoy the clear blue water of Lake Taupo. It is likely you will see on the horizon the sparkle of the tourist town Taupo. Relish the sense of capturing the holiday spirt of exploring Taupo’s side roads.

TAUPO is a premier destination and, if you are short on time check out 3 days in Taupo inspiration & tips for families and friends and pick out the activities that suit you and your family.

Where is Turangi located in New Zealand?

Turangi was originally created as accommodation for workers on the massive hydroelectric schemes in the 1950’s. Now primarily a visitor destination located on the bank of the Tongariro River. Turangi is 50 km from Taupo on State Highway one, the connection winds around the lake with splendid lakeside views and beaches.



The best way to explore Turangi and Tokaanu and beyond is by vehicle. Turangi is not on the usual tour bus routes creating a place less travelled and a favourite destination for visitors who want an experience less ordinary.

How to get to Turangi, North Island, New Zealand?

  • Nearest airport is Taupo (50 km)
  • Daily Intercity public bus service
  • Excellent road connections with state highway one passing the town

Where to stay in Turangi?


Check 7 camping grounds in Taupo


Our editors independently visit tour operators, purchase tickets, pay for accommodation, and rate products and places. We are not paid to go on a tour or visit a place. We only make money if you decide to purchase a product through our website links. You will not pay any extra, that is guaranteed.

We promise to never accept free products from manufacturers in return for boosting their products. Our independence and reviews is funded by your purchases and affiliate commissions, at no additional cost to yourself… read more about our affiliate programme in the terms and conditions HERE.



Best Bits travel guide is published by Owned and managed by PacificJane Ltd.

Related articles


If you have a query about content, travel deals or anything else, our team is happy to answer all your questions 🙂

    Your information is secure, no third party involved.
    100% Safe, secure, privacy guaranteed. Privacy Policy.