• A family looking over a waterfall in Taupo

    Play the ultimate game of I-Spy aboard Rapids Jet in Taupō

March 19, 2023

As the school holidays approach, parents often find themselves looking for fun family-friendly activities to keep their kids entertained. If you happen to be in Taupō in New Zealand, one activity that stands out is Rapids Jet. Not only is it a thrilling adventure for all ages, but it also offers plenty of opportunities for spotting local treasures and highlights along the way. 

Starting from the Huka Falls Jet base in Taupō, the Rapids Jet takes you on an exhilarating ride through the Waikato River, where you’ll encounter breathtaking views of the Aratiatia Dam, Nga Awa Purua Rapids, and even the filming locations of Yogi Bear and the famous Hobbit barrel scene. 

The Aratiatia Dam is a man-made marvel that was built in the 1960s to provide hydroelectric power to the region. Every day, the dam gates open, unleashing a torrent of water that rushes down the river below. The Rapids Jet ride takes you up close to the base of the dam, giving you a unique view of the water as it cascades down. 

As you continue along the river, you’ll also pass by the Nga Awa Purua Rapids, a natural wonder that boasts some of the most powerful rapids in the world. With names like the “Toilet Bowl” and “The Mother,” these rapids are sure to get your heart racing. 

For movie buffs, the Rapids Jet ride offers a chance to visit some iconic filming locations. Yogi Bear was filmed on location along the Waikato River, and you can see some of the scenes that were shot during the ride. The famous Hobbit barrel scene was also filmed in the region, and fans of the movie can experience a part of Middle earth as they ride along the river. 

But it’s not just man-made and cinematic marvels that you’ll see on the Rapids Jet ride. The river is also home to a variety of native flora and fauna, and you might spot some of the local wildlife as you zoom along. Keep your eyes peeled for birds such as herons and kingfishers, as well as fish such as trout and eels. 

To make the ride even more fun, turn it into an “i-spy” game for the kids. See who can spot the most wildlife, identify the different types of flora along the riverbanks, or find the filming locations first. It’s a great way to keep the whole family engaged and entertained. 


If you have more time to spend in the Taupō region, there are plenty of other family-friendly activities to enjoy. Take a boat cruise on Lake Taupō to see the stunning scenery and learn about the local history. 

All in all, the Rapids Jet ride is the perfect family activity for school holidays or a weekend getaway. It’s a thrilling adventure that’s sure to get your adrenaline pumping, and it offers plenty of opportunities for spotting local treasures and highlights along the way. So why not book your family in for a ride today and get ready for an unforgettable experience? 

Laugh, scream, and feel alive as we blast through the mighty Waikato River. Get ready for non-stop fun! 💦💥 #RapidsJet #JetBoatingNZ #TaupoThrills #NaturePlayground #AdrenalineRush #ExploreTaupo #RiverAdventure #AotearoaAdventures #PureNewZealand #NZMustDo #ExploreNZ #KiwiAdventures #TravelNZ
“The 1st rapids are exhilarating, the 3rd set were monstrous, what an adrenalin rush. 5 stars out of 5 🌟🤩⭐️🌠🖖” Thanks for this incredible Google Review, Jay! #RapidsJet #JetBoatingNZ #TaupoThrills #NaturePlayground #AdrenalineRush #ExploreTaupo #RiverAdventure #AotearoaAdventures #PureNewZealand #NZMustDo #ExploreNZ #KiwiAdventures #TravelNZ #googlereview
Nau mai haere mai i te ngā wai rere o te awa. We welcome you to come experience the rushing waters of the river. Happy Te Wiki O Te Reo Māori! (Māori Language Week). How will you celebrate? #RapidsJet #JetBoatingNZ #TaupoThrills #NaturePlayground #AdrenalineRush #ExploreTaupo #RiverAdventure #AotearoaAdventures #PureNewZealand #NZMustDo #ExploreNZ #KiwiAdventures #TravelNZ #maorilanguageweek #tewikiotereomaori
Rapids Jet: Defying gravity since ’93 🚤 📷: @Steve Penny #RapidsJet #JetBoatingNZ #TaupoThrills #NaturePlayground #AdrenalineRush #ExploreTaupo #RiverAdventure #AotearoaAdventures #PureNewZealand #NZMustDo #ExploreNZ #KiwiAdventures #TravelNZ
Explore the breathtaking beauty of the Huka Falls area on two wheels. Crisp air, stunning scenery, and plenty of photo ops await – there’s a ride for everyone, no matter your skill level or cycle experience 🚴‍♀‍ Journey along the 14km-return Huka Falls to Aratiatia Dam Trail and you’ll be rewarded with river views, lush native bush and hidden geothermal wonders. Time to strap on your helmet and start pedalling! #rapidsjet #taupo #nzmustdo #jetboat #holiday #getaway
Life is like a river – it's full of twists, turns, and unexpected rapids. Embrace the unknown and ride the waves to exciting new horizons! 🌊 #rapidsjet #nzmustdo #nature #travelgram #taupo #northisland
Caption this! 💦 #jetboat #taupo #nzmustdo #funtimes #adrenalinerush #thrills #purenewzealand
From the heart-racing to the awe-inspiring – our combo with @tepaturotorua is sure to ignite all your senses 🤩 Prepare to be amazed by the power of the Waikato River’s rapids, and captivated by traditional Māori performance and cuisine. Their current Tū Te Ihi winter celebration pays tribute to the time of year when the Matariki cluster of stars sit high and bright in our winter skies, as we reflect on the legacy of our ancestors and acknowledge the year that has been. Book via the link in our bio! ✨ #RapidsJet #Taupo #TePaTu #Rotorua #MaoriCulture #nzmustdo
Looking for a thrill that will leave you breathless? Look no further! Our jetboats are fueled by adrenaline and designed for speed 🚤😍 www.rapidsjet.com
Travelling around Aotearoa to catch all the football action? ⚽🏆 Just two hours from Waikato Stadium, and right by Taupo and Rotorua, our fast-paced jetboat ride is the perfect way to keep up the thrills between games! #nzmustdo #travelgram #mustdonewzealand #rapidsjet #jetboat
The gates of Taupō's Aratiatia Dam are released several times per day, turning a calm and peaceful trickle into the roaring, thunderous Aratiatia Rapids! View this spectacular sight from a series of lookouts, then come play in the rapids with us aboard our bright-yellow jetboats 🚤🌊 #AratiatiaDam #rapidsjet #nzmustdo #ifyouseeknz #spectacle #instatravel