Half-Day Kayak to the Maori Rock Carvings in Lake Taupo

Taupō, New Zealand

From US$86.40

Select Date and Travelers

Free cancellation
Up to 24 hours in advance.
  • 4 hours (approx.)
  • Mobile ticket
  • Offered in: English


Paddle a kayak to the magnificent Maori rock carvings on Lake Taupo with a half-day tour from Acacia Bay. You’ll learn the cultural significance behind the towering inscriptions, which were completed in 1980, and enjoy great views across the crystal-clear lake to the Tongariro Mountains. Approaching the Maori rock carvings by kayak means you can see them up close, passing native bush and tiny inlets, then floating right at the base of the cliff. Both morning and afternoon departures are available and beginning paddlers are welcome.
  • Paddling trip across Lake Taupo from Acacia Bay
  • See the Maori rock carvings from the water
  • Enjoy views of the lake and mountains
  • Chance to swim after viewing the rock carvings
  • Includes snacks and beverages on the water
  • Informative, friendly and professional guide

What's Included

  • Full instructions and commentary
  • Professional and experienced guide
  • Top-quality kayaking equipment
  • Safety gear
  • Muffin or another lovely refreshment
  • Coffee and/or Tea
  • Transport to starting Point: On request only (if you don't have your own car) Call to arrange.
  • Gear List: Please refer to our Gear list tab on our website for what to wear and bring.

    Meeting And Pickup

    Meeting point

    • Taupo Kayaking Adventures
      2/876 Acacia Bay Road, Acacia Bay, Taupō 3330, New Zealand

    End point

    This activity ends back at the meeting point.

    What To Expect

    Additional Info

    • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
    • Wheelchair accessible
    • A minimum of 2 people per booking is required
    • No heart problems or other serious medical conditions
    • Most travelers can participate
    • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 16 travelers
    Operated by Taupo Kayaking Adventures

    Cancellation Policy

    You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.

    • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
    • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
    • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
    • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.
    • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund.
    • This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund.

    Traveler Photos

    See more
    Featured review
    Great paddle with excellent, well informed guide. Good equipment and safety briefing. Coffee and muffin stop also highly enjoyable. But the absolute highlight is the carvings. Kayaking right upto them is easily the best way to see and experience them. Highly recommended


    72 reviews
    Total review count and overall rating based on Viator and Tripadvisor reviews
    Reviews by Viator travelers.
    Showing 1-10 of 72 reviews
    Well worth it
    Paula_J, Apr 2023
    I have always wanted to do this and it didn’t disappoint.A good workout with a great guide, hot chocolate and muffins and the carvings are impressive .We were able to get up close.
    Great way to exercise and see something unique
    Steve_J, Mar 2023
    Great tour for learning about the area and getting outside and getting exercise. The operators are easy to work with.
    It was a great trip. I...
    Sarah_P, Feb 2023
    It was a great trip. I learned loads and had a great time! The guides Legend and Joey were great! Legend particularly, helped us to keep going at moments , when our muscles ached!! It was brilliant and when we come again, I would do another kayaking trip. It was great to have such an experienced guide in, Legend.
    Delightful kayak trip with great views
    Mason_K, Jan 2023
    We took the kayak trip up to the Maori rock carvings, and had a delightful time. A fairly easy kayak trip up, with lots of stops for historical, cultural, and geologic discussion, arriving at the impressive rock carvings. There we had a snack provided, and enjoyed some time for swimming. Our guide, Legend, was great--friendly and knowledgeable. I really enjoyed the trip and absolutely would recommend it to others. If you're afraid of your fitness level for kayaking, I wouldn't worry too much. It's a great trip.
    This is really about being eco friendly
    Christine_B, Jan 2023
    We had gloriously sunny weather, two great guides and good company for this trip. There is a lot of history to hear and lovely scenery to be seen. Our guides were very knowledgeable and very good at making conversation which makes life a lot easier when paddling. Well done on this tour thank you.
    Highly recommend!
    Penny_M, Dec 2022
    Really nice easy family kayak trip. The Maori carvings are really impressive and our guide was excellent!
    Amazing Kayak Tour with a fantastic Guide!
    Deborah_C, Aug 2022
    We were the only two people on this tour. Our guide Legend was legendary! He was great and informative and very friendly. He mad us feel very comfortable and safe on the water. He was the type of guide that we would want to hang out with even outside the tour. He even gave us fantastic tips about the local area. We would kayak anytime or take any other tour with Legend.
    Kayaking with friends and family.
    Robin_H, Apr 2022
    Generally a very good experience. A great group activity. It was a bit rough and cold on the return journey.
    Amazing experience
    Daniela_A, Apr 2022
    That was an excellent experience. I really enjoyed the views and all the history relate to the place. Totally recomend to do in Taupo.
    Just do this!
    russell_K, Mar 2022
    Great paddle with excellent, well informed guide. Good equipment and safety briefing. Coffee and muffin stop also highly enjoyable. But the absolute highlight is the carvings. Kayaking right upto them is easily the best way to see and experience them. Highly recommended
    Fantastic time
    Grace_P, Jan 2022
    Had a really good time. Tour guides; Legend and Sasha were amazing, super friendly! Would definitely do it again 😊
    A great way to explore Lake Taupo
    PuiChi_I, Jan 2020
    It was a great way to explore Lake Taupo by kayaking and we could reach out to the Maori Rock Carving. We could come close and took picture. The kayaks were in very good condition. They had steer controlled by foot, and even a small motor that helped us to catch up with the team and saved our energy in return way! It was a small group tour with 8 persons in 4 kayaks. A good size of grouping. It was fun.
    Response from Host, Feb 2020
    Hi There. Its great to hear you had a fun tour out to the Maori Carvings - the motors definitely do help to make the trip a little bit more relaxing. Thank you for taking the time to leave a review.
    Best kayaking tour i've ever been...
    Wanyi L, Dec 2017
    Best kayaking tour i've ever been to. Lake Taupo by itself was magnificent and the rock carvings were really worth taking a look. The guide was very knowledgable and shared many local maori tales with us. The pace was just right, and the rest stop after reaching the rock carvings was very welcomed as it gave us more energy to continue on our return trip.

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