Make your way to the lakefront helipad in Rotorua and board your helicopter for the flight to Mt Tarawera. Your pilot takes off over the crater lakes of the Northern Lakes district before treating you to expansive aerial views over the lunar-like landscape of the volcano, which includes a 5-mile-long (8-km) rift.
Soaring over Lake Tarawera, the helicopter circles the volcanic terrain, including a vast crater system formed by the 1886 eruption, which covered the village of Te Wairoa and took 153 lives. Learn about the destruction of the Pink and White Terraces — waterfall pools that drew 19th-century tourists to the shores of Lake Rotomahana.
Upon landing, disembark the chopper with your guide and explore Mt Tarawera on foot. Walk past otherworldly craters and volcanic domes and compare the region’s geologic history with Maori legend as you listen to colorful commentary.
After your 20-minute exploration on the ground, re-board the helicopter for the return flight to Rotorua.