SH5 as seen from the summit of Rainbow mountain

Image: Lukas Marek | Creative Commons


Walk or mountain bike past geothermal features, or up to 360 degrees views of the surrounding mountains and lakes.

Place overview


  • Mountain biking
  • Walking and tramping

Find things to do and places to stay Rainbow Mountain, Waiotapu and Te Kopia Scenic Reserves

About this place

Nature and conservation

Rainbow Mountain

Rainbow Mountain is significant in botanical and scientific terms, containing a complex mixture of plant species, some of which are rare and unique to geothermal areas.

From its volcanic origins, Rainbow Mountain (Maungakakaramea, meaning ‘mountain of coloured earth) has cooled over recent years.Though places are still smouldering, the native vegetation is regenerating.

Getting there

These scenic reserves are accessed from SH 5 south of Rotorua.

Parking, picnic facilities and toilets are provided at the base of Rainbow Mountain, just past the turning for SH 38.


Rotorua Office
Phone:   +64 7 349 7400
Fax:   +64 4 471 1117
Address:   99 Sala Street
Rotorua 3010
Postal Address:   PO Box 1146
Rotorua 3040
Rotorua i-SITE Visitor Information Centre
Phone:   +64 7 351 7324
Fax:   +64 4 471 1117
Address:   1167 Fenton St
Postal Address:   Private Bag 3007
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