Laze away cold winter days or warm summer nights in the sacred geothermal waters of Kerosene Creek, a hot creek that cascades and flows through pristine New Zealand bush. 

Located amidst New Zealand's vibrant volcanic zone, this favourite local gem lies approximately 29.5km (25 minutes) South of Rotorua, only a short distance before the renowned Waiotapu Geothermal Wonderland. Driving South towards Lake Taupo Kerosene Creek is situated 2km down gravel forestry track Old Waiotapu Road. While easily accessible by car, once turning left off the main highway this short gravel road is often windy, bumpy and laden with potholes - care should be taken at an easy speed. 

There is plenty of parking area where the gravel road widens before being gated to prevent public access to logging areas. Valuables should be hidden from sight and vehicles always locked as unfortunately the past has seen occasional break-ins. 

There is an easily recognisable track which winds through printine bush, following the steamy creek as it ebbs and flows around bends and down cascading falls. As the entire creek is hot (approximately 30 degrees celsius), you can step into the mid-depth waters at any stage and float with the current, or walk along the forest path until you spy a spot that looks like a perfect place to soak in this serene environment. 

It is a true geothermal gem, and gives one a serene connection to the raw beauty of New Zealand's pristine nature as you soak in the steamy waters, gazing up to the towering forest canopy. Whether looking for a place to unwind in the afternoon, meet friends at night, or simply laze away cold winter days, Kerosene Creek is a magical spot to discover. 

Hint #1: As the waters begin to feel increasingly hot, I love to climb up the waterfall and lay in its cascading shallows to cool down. 

Hint #2: This is a great spot for a sneaky beer or two with friends, whether 9am or 9pm!

* Please leave this beautiful spot as you find it, taking any rubbish with you

Pack List

  • Swimwear
  • Towel
  • Bottle of Water 
  • Camera
  • Food & Beverages (Optional)
  • Torch (Overnight)
  • Tent & Sleeping Bag (Overnight)
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Activities Chillin, Camping, Photography, Swimming
Skill Level Beginner
Season Year Round
Features
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Forest
Hot Springs
River
Romantic
Scenic
Waterfall
Swimming Hole

Reviews

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Overall rating: 

Free Spa!!

There are so many hot water creeks/pools in the Rotorua area and this one would probably be the most popular with the Stray bus visiting there and tourist hot spot. Go early! I went on a Saturday and around 10 was when the Stray bus was leaving and it was fairly quiet. The creek itself is also much bigger than I expected! The first spot is smaller and the water flow is almost strong enough to feel like a massage on your back ;) the second spot is much bigger space to hang around. Going down to the bottom can be slippery so be careful! The area can be known for trouble sometimes. It's advised to try to not make it obvious you're life is in your car and bring your stuff to the other side of the creek so it's easier to keep an eye on it.

Relaxing hot spring

Really nice detour while exploring Rotorua! Really warm so you can't stay in too long! Get used to the sulphur smell cuz it ain't goin anywhere in all of Rotorua

Great Location! Beware Of Rubbish.

It is a beautiful location, and a wonderful walk. However, there is a lot of rubbish around, so be a tidy Kiwi, and pick up after yourself (and others).


Please respect the places you find on The Outbound Collective.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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