Ready to experience Rotorua’s best places to see? We’re here to help you navigate our fantastic city, no matter what your budget. Check out this essential guide to Rotorua transport that you’ll need to reach our world-famous Luge and Gondola - plus many more fantastic Skyline attractions.
Here are the top transport options for getting to and around Rotorua:
- Domestic Flights to Rotorua
- Driving to Rotorua
- Rotorua Airport Transfers
- Bus services and routes
- Shuttle Buses
- Car Rentals in Rotorua
- Campervans and Motorhomes
- Mountain Biking Trails
- Bike Tours
- FAQ's about Rotorua Transport
Getting to Rotorua
Domestic Flights to Rotorua
Our national airline, Air New Zealand, flies direct from Wellington, Auckland and Christchurch. Check out up-to-date flight services online at the Rotorua Airport website.
Driving to Rotorua
North Island roads leading to Rotorua are sealed and well signposted. If you’re keen to make your own way around town, you should make sure to book in advance at your chosen car hire company.
Alternatively, you can take the reliable InterCity Rotorua bus service, which also provides group tours.
Getting around Rotorua
Rotorua Airport Transfers
The airport is a convenient 10 minutes from town - grab a taxi, take an airport shuttle or use Rotorua’s public transport services. You’ll find the shuttle bus airport service located outside the arrival gate.
Bay Bus Route 10 will take you downtown. You can find the airport drop-off and pick-up stop located outside the departure gate. Check out the BayBus Rotorua public transportation site for the latest timetables, service updates, and transport information.
Public transport in Rotorua
Bus services and routes
Rotorua buses operate 11 routes from the Arawa Street interchange. View timetable information and route maps online at baybus.co.nz. Buy tickets from the driver or a day saver pass from your local tourist information i-SITE.
Taxi companies in the area include:
- Rotorua Taxis - 07 347 9797
- Taxi Cabs Rotorua - 0800 500 000
Shuttles offer a cost-effective travel service between your accommodation, ski resorts, and other great attractions. Book online or over the phone - and remember to get in early if you’re booking during a peak season.
Rental transport options in Rotorua
Car Rentals in Rotorua
For self-drive travel options, you’ll find a suitable rental car company online at rotorua-airport.co.nz.
Campervans and Motorhomes
Bring the family on the NZ journey of a lifetime and hire a campervan or motorhome. Driving and stopping to stay overnight at your chosen destinations, you’ll find plenty of holiday parks to experience total serenity and New Zealand’s extraordinary beauty.
Biking options in Rotorua
Best Mountain Biking Trails
Enjoy 12 exhilarating bike tracks at Skyline’s mountain biking park. Hire a bike or bring your own. The local Bay Buses are equipped with adult bike racks - take route 1 from the CBD and get in on the action!
Rotorua Lakes Council actively promotes bike riding around town, with an urban network of tracks set up around town. Get ready to absorb incredible historical, geological and cultural sights on a Rotorua City ride.
FAQs and tips for driving around Rotorua
How long does it take to drive around Lake Rotorua?
You can wheel around Lake Rotorua by car in only 45 minutes!
How much does petrol cost in Rotorua?
Currently, petrol costs between NZD $2.08 and $2.17 per litre (2021).
Where to go in Rotorua on a rainy day
1. Skyline Rotorua!
Enjoy a glass of wine at Volcanic Hills Winery, or rug up warm, poncho and all and ride the Luge! Not much stops the Skyline Luge from operating, certainly not a little bit of rain. It only adds to the adventure! Blast down the track leaving only a wake behind you.
2. Motion Entertainment
Five minutes from the CBD is the largest indoor entertainment centre in New Zealand. Enjoy laser tag, mini-golf, escape games, the trampoline park and more.
3. The Zorb!
Roll down Mt Ngongotaha on one of four tracks inside a giant inflatable ball - with or without water.
4. Te Puia and Whakarewarewa Cultural Experience
Experience New Zealand culture and visit the Te Puia Maori Art And Crafts Institute and the Living Māori Village. Watch daily indoor cultural shows and learn about life in the village.
5. Epic Jet Boating Rides
Watch the scenery whizz past as you zip across the water on an exhilarating, high-octane jet boat ride - yes, it still heads out in light rain!
What are the best free things to do in Rotorua?
Do you have an interest in local history, traditions and culture? Check out the Arts Village, the Rotorua Museum, and the Te Amorangi Trust Museum.
Visitors to these historical gardens can enjoy walking around the colourful monuments, public art, assorted flowers and ancient trees.
Lady Knox Geyser
Watch the impressive daily eruption of one of the oldest and most extensive geothermal systems in NZ.
Sit back, relax and rewind in one of Rotorua’s many healing mud pools.
Where are the best adventure activities in Rotorua?
You’ll find some awesome outdoor adventures at this local attraction for tourists to get the blood pumping:
- The Luge - Zoom downhill through the Whakarewarewa Forest on a gravity-fuelled cart.
- Mountain Biking - Head to the Skyline MTB Park to access 12 kilometres of world-class trails. Please bring your bike on the Gondola or hire one from our amazing collection.
- The Skyswing - Swing over Rotorua reaching speeds up to 150kph, 50 metres above the ground.
- The Zoom Zipline - Race family and friends down Mt Ngongotaha at speeds up to 60kph.
Read our Skyline blog for more inspiration for your visit to our incredible adventure destination.