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Plants in the Lake Tarawera Scenic Reserve have regenerated since the 1886 Mount Tarawera eruption which dramatically changed the landscape around the volcano.


The 1886 eruption of Mount Tarawera drastically changed the area around the Lake Tarawera Scenic Reserve.

Place overview


  • Boating
  • Camping
  • Scenic and nature tours
  • Walking and tramping
  • Check, clean, dry
    Stop the spread of didymo and other freshwater pests.

    Remember to Check, Clean, Dry all items before entering, and when moving between, waterways.

In this section

Find things to do and places to stay Lake Tarawera Scenic Reserve

About track difficulties

    About this place

    Getting there

    Access to Tarawera Outlet is from Kawerau township (off SH 30 between Rotorua and Whakatane) via private forestry roads which require permits. The forest gate is closed during the hours of darkness. The forest road may be closed in summer when fire risk is high.

    Permits cost $5 and must be collected on the day of entering the forest roads from:

    Kawerau Information Centre
    Plunket St, Kawerau
    +64 7 323 6300
    Open daily 9am - 4pm (8am - 6pm from December 15 to January 29)

    Also available from the Kawarau Online website.

    A number of DOC approved commercial opperators provide tours , boat charters and transport options in the Lake Tarawera Scenic Reserve.

    Know before you go

    Dogs, horses, vehicles (including bikes and motorbikes), fires, removal of plants or animals, camping outside designated areas and hunting without a permit are not permitted.

    Campers are advised to use gas cookers.

    Stop the spread of Rotorua pest fish brochure.
    Stop the spread of Rotorua pest fish brochure. View larger (PDF, 1,110K)

    Stop the spread and keep Rotorua lakes free of pest fish

    Report any sightings of koi carp (3-70 cm) or catfish (3-40 cm). Other fish of particular concern are rudd and gambusia.

    You can help by photographing any specimens caught and forwarding to your local DOC office and by following Check Clean Dry protocols.

    Invasive species are a problem because they reduce water quality and can compete with native species and trout.

    For further information, or to report suspicious fish, contact your local DOC office or phone 0800 DOC HOT.


    Tourism Rotorua i-SITE Information Centre
    Phone:   +64 7 351 7324
    Address:   1167 Fenton St
    Email:   rotoruavisitor@doc.govt
    Full office details
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