Wai-O-Tapu Geothermal Wonderland

Hot pool at Wai-O-Tapu
Hot pool at Wai-O-Tapu

We only had a few days in North Island, so after visiting the fantastic Zealandia wildlife sanctuary in Wellington and the predator-free reserve on Kapiti Island, we had a long drive north to Rotorua. We spent a night in a campsite beside the worryingly-high waters of Lake Rerewhakaaitu (so high, in fact, that we couldn’t pay for the campsite because the booth was under water!) and the next morning headed to the Wai-O-Tapu Geothermal Wonderland. This isn’t nearly as tacky as the name might suggest, and if, like us, you only have a few hours in the area it’s a great way to pack in as much of the geothermal features of the region as possible.

This is actually three different recordings each fading into the next. First we hear the calls of nesting Pied Stilt (Himantopus himantopus leucocephalus) against a general background of geothermal activity, followed by two close-up recordings of small steam vents.

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