Taupo could be considered Queenstown’s northern brother. Full of natural wonders (including New Zealand’s largest lake) in which you can partake in a myriad of heart-racing extreme activities, Taupo attracts visitors both permanent and temporary alike. Whether you’re taking a jetboat to the mighty Huka Falls or skydiving over the enormous lake, Taupo is sure to leave you begging for more.
The Tongariro Crossing is also nearby, so you can take in a view of Lord Of the Rings’ Mordor on a first-hand basis – and even take a trek up Mount Doom itself. This is a place you won’t want to miss when you first land in NZ.