Rotorua VS Dunedin/Otago Peninsula

Aug 28th, 2005, 03:04 PM
  #1  
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Rotorua VS Dunedin/Otago Peninsula

We had planned to fly out of Queenstown to Rotorua and spend 1&1/2 days 2 nights in the area and then drive to Auckland the following morning in time to catch a flight out at 4pm to Sydney.Then I read about Dunedin/Otago Peninsula and now am thinking we should change our flight out of QT & drive from TeAnue to Dunedin(4 hours drive?)after coming off of the overnite Milford trip. Then we would have 2 full days and 3 nites to explore the area and fly out direct from Dunedin to Auckland (or have 2 nites 2 days & drive back to QT to catch the plane out of there to Auckland.) Is it worth the extra expense of changing the plane reservation to stay and see Dunedin/Otago Peninsula area? Or should we not miss Rotorua? Any advice about the 2 areas will be appreciated.
We will have already spent 7 days seeing CC, glaciers,QT, Doubtful, and Milford.
Thanks
judypudyva is offline  
Aug 28th, 2005, 04:01 PM
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It depends what interests you most and where you've been before. Rotorua has Maori cultural activites and thermal sites. The thermal sites are less impressive than those at Yellowstone.
someotherguy is offline  
Aug 29th, 2005, 11:29 AM
  #3  
Jed
 
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Having been to Rotorua and Dunedin (and Yellowstone), my opinion is that Rotorua is the more interesting, for the thermal sites and Maori culture.

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Jed is offline  
Sep 1st, 2005, 06:00 PM
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My vote would be to see Rotorua. The thermal sites are so very different from anything I've seen before ( I haven't been to Yellowstone). The thermal areas are amazing. We went to both Wai-o-tapu and Whakarewarewa ( the later being where the Maori village is) and and we were so glad we went to both.
we also enjoyed a AIX spa treatment at the Polynesian Spa ( reated one of the top ten in the world....it was wonderful)

Although I really enjoyed Dunedin and Otago, it was not unique, although very pretty. The main reason to go to this area, In my opinion, is to see the penguins and other wildlife. If you are a huge penguin fan, That would be the only real main reason to go to Otago.

So, I'd suggest sticking to your original plan
Have lots of fun.
kodi is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2005, 08:10 AM
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Kinda depends what you like. That drive from Te Anau is more like 6 hours and not really all that interesting. Dunedin has a different feel than any of the other NZ cities, and the Tunnel Beach walk nearby turned out to be a highlight of the trip. If you go dont miss that. Otago Peninsula was STUNNING. we did the penguin tour, which was highly enjoyable. Rotorua is a bit touristy, Polynesian Spa is nice but I dont think its worth a special trip on its own, Wai-o-Tapu however is first rate!
CubeNY is offline  
Sep 2nd, 2005, 09:44 PM
  #6  
 
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Hi,
Just so you don't gethe wrong idea. Te Anau to Dunedin takes 3.5 - 4 hours, less if you put your foot down. The route is Te Anau-Lumsden-Gore-Dunedin. Not sure which way the previous poster went, but I suspect it may have been via Invercargill, or even the Southern Scenic Route through the Catlins. (this can take up to 8 hours)

Between Dunedin and Rotorua, My vote would be for Rotorua, although compared to Yellowstone it's a poor cousin. THe maori thing is Ok if you are into that. THe Tamaki Brothers attraction is very good. Sort of a Hollywood version of Maori life and culture. What you would expect from what you see on TV, if you see anything about it at all in the US.

Whakarewarewa on the other hand is Maori life and culture in the raw. It's promoted as a working maori village, so you see the old cars in the back yards, derelect caravans beside the road, and houses in various states of disrepair.. You may gather I was not impressed, in fact it sucked and I won't be going back.
Rotorua is a nice little city, and the surrounding thermal attractions are worth a visit, but Yellowstone it ain't
vbca is offline  
Sep 7th, 2005, 09:51 PM
  #7  
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Thanks for all of your replies. I think the decision is coming down to $$ for flight out of Dunedin to Auckland (cost more then expected)and it would make for a very long day flying from Dunedin to Auckland to Sydney to Cairns. (flights scheduled) Any advice for cheap airfare? Dunedin and Otago does seem more interesting since we have been to Yellowstone, but maybe a day in Rotorua and a drive to the caves on way back to Auckland would work. Any advice on a Mouri dinner if we do go to Rotorua? Advice where to stay there?
judypudyva is offline  
Sep 8th, 2005, 11:44 AM
  #8  
Jed
 
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We went to the Matai hangi in Rotorua. It was OK, and I am not sure if it is better or worse than the others. But as I understand, it is smaller. There were around 200 people, and we were able to get a front row seat for the 'show'.

On Expedia, I get a rate of US $168 for DUD-AKL. On AirNZ, the lowest rate (for Oct 11, a date I just picked) is NZ$123!!!!

For Rotorua, would you prefer a hotel, motel, B&B?
Jed is offline  
Sep 8th, 2005, 03:02 PM
  #9  
 
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We stayed at the Lake Plaza in Rotorua and attended the Mai Ora concert and hangi at Te Whakarewarewa. There were probably 70-80 people there (this was April 2004).

The concert and food were good - not overly touristy and we enjoyed spending the evening there.

Lee Ann
ElendilPickle is offline  
Sep 12th, 2005, 08:31 PM
  #10  
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Thanks for the flight info--cheaper then I could find on the site myself for Oct 9th.
Could stay in anyplace with character, lake view, or amenities. Was looking into Grand Tiara,Lake Plaza, Park Heritage, or Novotel---byt they may be to much like Conference center hotels. Any suggestions?
I was looking into the Tamaki Maori hangi--.
judypudyva is offline  

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