The town of Taupo is located on the shore of Lake Taupo in the centre of the North Island of New Zealand. Beautiful Lake Taupo is actually a huge volcano with a fiery history, sunk into a stunning volcanic landscape and surrounded by bush clad mountains and is New Zealand’s largest freshwater lake. Taupo town lies in the southern Waikato region and its name Taupo; which the town is commonly known as, is a shortened version of its full name Taupo-nui-a-Tia, which means "The Great Cloak of Tia" in the Maori language; where Tia is the name of the discoverer of the lake. Home to many natural attractions such as hot mineral springs, thundering waterfalls, snow capped mountains, beautiful freshwater lakes filled with trout; Taupo is a great vacation destination in both summer and winter. Muslim travelers will be able to locate some Halal restaurants and eateries in Taupo, as New Zealand is a country focused on promoting adventure tourism and is therefore interested in offering Halal-friendly facilities to the increasing number of Muslim tourists.
The lakeside town of Taupo provides a base for visitors who are looking to fish for trout, ski Mount Ruapehu and explore the local geothermal phenomena. Like most areas in New Zealand, the town of Taupo offers its visitors many outdoor activities including adrenaline pumping adventure as well as other more relaxing outdoor activities. The north east part of the lake, where the town of Taupo is located, in the banks of a large bay is where the lake discharges into the Waikato River. The river flows over one of New Zealand’s most spectacular waterfall known as the Huka Falls which is located north of the town and is only a short distance away and is one of the most visited natural attractions in New Zealand. It is the perfect location for a picnic or to take nature walks or for the more adventurous traveler, a throttling jet boat ride to the foot of the cascading waterfall would be great fun.
A few minutes south of the lake, is Tongariro National Park which is one of only a handful of sites in the world to be given dual World Heritage status due to it cultural and natural importance and a site visitors should not miss. Turangi is the trout fishing mecca of New Zealand and for tourists wishing to experience wild trout fishing, this would be the perfect spot to do so. While others can enjoy a meal of fish and chips on the shore, like the locals do, or even dine on the lakefront.
Taupo is a centre of volcanic and geothermal activity and therefore is home to many hot springs suitable for bathing, located in several places in the vicinity and are popular among the locals as well as tourists. It is also home to the only geothermal heated prawn farm where tourists could enjoy delicious and fresh prawn burgers. During winter, skiers and snowboarders flood the region, most drawn to Mount Ruapehu; which is New Zealand’s largest ski area.
Another site not to be missed is the Maori Rock Carvings at Mine Bay, on Lake Taupo, which is over 100 meters high and is accessible only by boat. It was created in 1970 and since then the cliff has become a popular tourist attraction.
Water activities in Taupo include kayaking, river cruises, jet boating and white water rafting as well as mountain biking, horse riding and hiking. Taupo is home to many tourist attractions and activities with something to suit all ages, tastes and budgets. A region rich in local history, tourists can enjoy the diversity of the many art galleries, museums and crafters of Taupo. For those interested in shopping, the town offers many boutiques along its tree lined streets. The towns shopping options are diverse as they are fun; with a great range of souvenirs, unique gifts and artwork there are many options for tourists to choose from.
The main airport that serves Taupo is Rotorua Airport, which is located 62 kilometres from the Taupo city centre. It consists of an international terminal as well as a domestic one. The airport is easily accessible by road and travelers have the option of taking the bus, taxi or renting a car to get to their destination. By road it takes about one and a half hours to travel from Rotorua to Taupo. In addition to the Rotorua Airport, Taupo also has several domestic airports close by. Taupo Airpot is the nearest at only 1.2 kilometres away.
In order to cater to the growing Muslim tourist population, the town does have a few Halal restaurants. Most of these restaurants cater to various dietary requirements, and have options for vegetarians as well as meat eaters. However, Muslim visitors must be warned that most outlets do serve alcohol and other non-Halal items. Halal restaurants in Taupo include Cafe Anatolia; which is a Turkish restaurant and Mr India Tandoori Restaurant, which is an Indian one.
There are no mosques in Taupo. The closest mosque that Muslim travelers could use is in Rotorua which is about a one and a half hour drive from Taupo. The Rotorua Islamic Centre offers prayer facilities for locals as well as Muslim tourists on Friday for Jumu'ah prayers as well as festivals and Taraweeh prayers. Muslim travelers could pray in their hotel rooms if possible before they set out on their daily excursions.