- #1726575supergoldMemberMember since: May 9, 2009
Replies: 9101supergold July 27, 2019 at 6:46 pm
Here’s a place, just outside Rotorua, I have never heard of before that looks very interesting. Orakei Korako is a little-known valley of geothermal wonder between Taupō and Rotorua. It has 23 geysers tucked away in the hillside, and the surrounding bush is a constant hiss of steam. 💫
The best bit? It has a hidden waterfall, that can only be accessed through a narrow crevice. Would you dare?
‘The Squeeze’, Orakei Korako: New Zealand’s secret hot waterfall
09:40, Jul 26 2019
It’s hidden in a geothermal valley – but you have to squeeze through a narrow crevice to get there.
We’ve just arrived at a geothermal treasure. Steam and sunlight flirt in front of us. And in the background, a hot waterfall – the temperature of a bath – thunders away. It’s a scene of such beauty and mystique that it almost feels fictitious.
Aside from a handful of locals – few people know this place exists. It’s protected by nature’s best defence: isolation. We’re half an hour drive out of Rotorua, and an hour down a river by jet boat. Then it’s 20 minutes of wading in a hot water stream down a narrow crevice. Sound a bit daunting? Well, consider this: the youngest person to do it was just three.
Orakei Korako is a little-known valley of geothermal wonder – sitting between Taupō and Rotorua. It has 23 geysers, tucked away in the hillside. The surrounding bush is a constant hiss of steam, unpredictably mushrooming as Earth vents its anger. While anybody can visit the geothermal park, getting to the waterfall is much harder. Part of the geothermal park drains into a series of rocks, which has formed a narrow gap you can squeeze through.
The only way to get to the entrance is by jet boating down the Waikato River – passing at speed under trees, around rocks and through a remote gorge. It’s the middle of winter, so the crew wrap us up in seven layers for the hour-long boat ride.
As we near the geothermal valley, the bush begins to change dramatically. Steam rises in dozens of places, from hidden fumaroles on the forest floor. We head a few more minutes down the river, to a small steam. To our surprise, as we jump out of the boat, the water is already warm – a sign of what’s to come.
Anyone over the age of three can make the journey to ‘The Squeeze’ hot waterfall, and the trip operates year-round.
Now, here’s where the trip gets its name. It’s called ‘The Squeeze’. The stream quickly becomes a narrow crack in the rock, just wide enough to squeeze through. Depending on the time of year, the water can be around your waist – or in places – you may not be able to touch the bottom.
The hot waterfall is the temperature of a bath.
It’s not so tight you need vaseline to get through, but it will test your relationship with small spaces. Our guide, Cam, has only ever had about ten people freak out and refuse to keep going.
It’s five minutes of shimmying before the crevice opens up again to thick native bush. By this time, the stream has got even warmer, leading to a thick layer of mist hanging in the air. The beauty is mesmerising.
The water levels can change depending on the time of year. You could be wading or swimming through the gap.
Before long we hear a roar of water. There’s one last squeeze to the waterfall pool, complete with a canopy of thick ferns. There is no cellphone reception, no sign of the modern world – I’m literally up a crack in a volcanic valley – sitting in a natural hot bath. Now that’s my kind of hidden gem.
Yes, children as young as three can go on the trip – they will need to wear lifejackets up to the waterfalls. The trip is not recommended for anyone with extreme claustrophobia.
CAN YOU DO IT IN WINTER?
Absolutely. We did it in the middle of winter without getting cold – the water is warm, and you’re well layered for the jet boat trip.
The water is warm, and you’re well layered for the jet boat trip so this could be a winter getaway.
MORE INFORMATION NZ Riverjet runs The Squeeze trip year-round. $189 for adults and $99 for children. See: riverjet.co.nz
GETTING THERE Riverjet is located between Taupō and Rotorua on SH5.
STAYING THERE Millennium Hotel Rotorua offers luxury rooms and ultra-comfy beds. Prices start from $220 per night. See millenniumhotels.com
Supergold-Wainuiomata (Wellington)#1727951vale019 August 6, 2019 at 6:53 pm
WOW- a hidden gem, indeed. It sounds fantastic . I wanna go there – NOW!!! Truly, I would love to do that trip but, unfortunately, I don’t think I am up to it nowadays. DAMN!! Why didn’t I find out about it a few years back.
Thanks, dear SG, for posting that – fabulous! 💋🤗#1727955vale019 August 6, 2019 at 7:00 pm
Welcome to the Utter Majesty Of NZ’s Glaciers
Upon arrival to New Zealand from their ancestral home, almost a 1000 years ago, the Maori people called it Aotearoa. “The land of the long white cloud.” That is because, in NZ, there are many white, puffy clouds that look remarkably close to earth, as if one could reach out a hand and touch them. It is a country of breathtaking, vivacious and varied natural beauty. From sky-breaking, frozen mountains to emerald meadows and even black beaches surrounded by great cliffs – it has it all. This time, we go down to the South Island, where we get to explore the majestic and epic glaciers of lower New Zealand. New Zealand has over 3,000 glaciers. Enjoy the flight over this unique, majestic place.#1728096kaiMemberMember since: January 4, 2008
Replies: 9456kai August 7, 2019 at 11:08 pm
So fabulous all of these super gold and Val
so many memories revived
not long and we will all make some more there 😎
Cheers From Kai#1728142vale019 August 8, 2019 at 4:33 pm
That picture of the fern is GORGEOUS, Kai. Just LOVE it.
Thanks for staying in touch and for your welcome, happy posts. 💋💋#1728171vale019 August 8, 2019 at 5:42 pm
New Zealand Music – Suzanne Prentice
Click the audio links to listen to the song clips – fingers crossed it works
While still in her teens, Suzanne Prentice became a household name in New Zealand for her powerful performances and recordings of mainstream country music. She would go on to sing at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, in Auckland before the Queen, and make hundreds of charity appearances. She transcended the country genre to become one of New Zealand’s most enduring and successful pop artists.
Suzanne Lena Prentice was born on 19 September 1958 in Invercargill to Rose and Bob Prentice. Bob played the Hawaiian guitar and could whistle; Rose sang in an English dance band during the war.
Prentice received her first guitar for a birthday and, years later, told NZ Women’s Weekly reporter Virginia Smith that she found “learning to play the instrument meant learning to sing as well. Before then I was really more interested in riding my bike than singing or listening to music.”
At Rosedale Intermediate, Prentice made her talent quest debut, coming second. The next year she won first prize at the 1970 Southland A&P Show then joined the Southland Country Music Association. At 13, she passed a radio audition at Invercargill’s 4ZA.
A press bio from the 1980s describes an early performance: “It was 1971, Invercargill, New Zealand, before an auditorium packed with country music fans; the act that almost brought the roof down was a demure 12-year-old. She strummed her guitar, nearly as big as herself, and then with almost unbelievable poise and complete vocal control, broke into ‘I’m Little But I’m Loud’. The crowd was ecstatic and demanded encore after encore.”
1983#1728185supergoldMemberMember since: May 9, 2009
Replies: 9101supergold August 8, 2019 at 10:20 pm
Welcome to the Utter Majesty Of NZ’s Glaciers
Stunning. Thank you Val.
New Zealand Music – Suzanne Prentice
I remember Suzanne Prentice from years ago and she was always great. The link opened easily and all those lovely links to her songs – Wow. I have saved the link on my desktop so that I can go back to it again and again. Thank you Val.
Supergold-Wainuiomata (Wellington)#1729045vale019 August 9, 2019 at 2:53 pm
Aww – thanks, SG, as I’ve said before – you really are a Super Gold!!!!
Our glaciers and mountains [plus all the rest] are stunningly beautiful and we are so fortunate that they are all within relatively close traveling distance.
I’m so pleased you enjoyed that article about Suzanne Prentice – I remember her well & I, too, have saved those links to her songs.#1729046vale019 August 9, 2019 at 3:57 pm
NZ Comedian – 1970’s.
John Morrison Clarke (29 July 1948 – 9 April 2017) was a New Zealand-born comedian, writer, and satirist. He was born in Palmerston North, New Zealand, and lived in Australia from the late 1970s.
For two days in 1976, the city welcomed back its native son, Fred Dagg. This story first appeared in the Manawatu Standard in 2009.
‘There he was, large as life and oh so familiar, signing autographs on a September afternoon in 1976 in downtown Palmerston North.
But there was something wrong. “Where are ya gumboots?” yelled a cheeky fan.
John Clarke, alias Fred Dagg, turned, quick as a flash.
“If I’d known it was goin’ to be a formal occasion,” he said, “I’d have worn them.”
LINK TO SONG
In 1988 John Clarke cameoed in Geoff Murphy’s action movie Never Say Die.
In this excerpt, Clarke plays a car salesman who is remarkably frank in selling a car to the movie’s hero (Temuera Morrison).#1729184vale019 August 10, 2019 at 4:58 pm
Kāwhia – as Kiwi as it gets!
(I took this article straight from our Grownups articles of interest, hope no-one minds 😛 )
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