Rotorua is a city on the southern shores of the lake of the same name, in the Bay of Plenty Region of New Zealand's North Island. It is the seat of the Rotorua District, a territorial authority encompassing Rotorua and several other nearby towns.
Tourism is a major industry in Rotorua, and for good reason, the tourism services are therefore well developed and visitors should definitely make a stop at the Tourist Information Centre on the main road, Fenton Street.
Rotorua is built over a geothermal hot spot. There are numerous natural vents, hot pools and other geothermal features in and around the city. Many of these are in parks and reserves. Natural eruptions of steam, hot water and mud occasionally occur in new locations.
Many places have their own private geothermal bores for heating and water for bathing although private use of naturally occurring geothermal water and steam is controlled. It has recently been refurbished. Wai-O-Tapu is also an entertaining day out.
Geologically, Rotorua is in the middle of the Taupo Volcanic Zone, which is named after Lake Taupo, the largest volcano in the area. There are four major volcanic calderas, which now contain lakes, and several more recognisable volcanoes in the surrounding area.
Rotorua is a major destination for both domestic and international tourists; the tourism industry is by far the largest industry in the district. It is known for its geothermal activity, and features geysers - notably the Pohutu Geyser at Whakarewarewa - and hot mud pools. This thermal activity is sourced to the Rotorua caldera, on which the town lies. Rotorua is home to the Waiariki Institute of Technology.