Taupo, Central North Island, New Zealand
At a Glance
Huka Lodge is a must for those who seek comfort in culinary adventures and outdoor pursuits, to experience all of this we highly recommend a minimum of three nights here.
Located on the banks of the Waikato River which is notably the countries longest river this is arguably New Zealand's most exclusive and well-renowned luxury lodge.
Whether a leisurely game of golf is for you or jumping on a 30-minute jet boat through the falls is more up your street this property is perfect.
We don't like to name drop and we like to leave a few surprises but trust us when we say you are in for a treat when it comes to dining at Huka Lodge. Meals are served in the cosy main lodge and gives the perfect opportunity to share your days activities with other guests.
For those looking for plenty of space whether for a large family of maybe a celebration there is the charming four-bedroom cottage which offers views over the mighty Huka Falls.
Best time to Visit
Good time to visit
Average time to visit
The climate in New Zealand is incredibly pleasant, with warm and balmy summers and cold crisp winter months with wonderful clear, blue skies. The warmer high-season months of November to April are perfect for outdoor exploration. The colder months of June to August are the best time to ski.
Both North and South Islands are drier on the east coast, rather than on the west, where mountain ranges act as a trap for the moisture-rich winds from the Tasman Sea. It is also worth remembering that it is usually a few degrees cooler on the South Island than the North Island and as New Zealand has a maritime climate, the weather can change rapidly.
Supremely situated on 8 hectares of private parkland on the bend of the mighty Waikato River, the luxury, iconic Huka Lodge is a haven of hospitality, tranquillity and activities in an unrivalled riverside location on the outskirts of Taupo.
Huka Lodge is an exclusive, stylish and private lodge surrounded by magnificent natural beauty. Attention to detail and high levels of service, cuisine and comfort all make Huka Lodge one of New Zealand's finest lodges. There are so many cosy places to curl up with a glass of wine and a book that you may never feel the need to leave this relaxing retreat but a short walk from Huka Lodge takes you to the banks of the mighty Waikato River, where the river flows down to the spectacular azure-blue cascades of the Huka Falls. This is just a taste of the vast range of dazzling sites and activities that await you in this spectacular region.
The peaceful Lodge Suites offer every comfort. Light, spacious and secluded they feature outdoor terraces and are ideally located just 20 metres from the river amongst mature trees. For those wanting privacy and what is effectively their own home, the four bedroom Owner's Cottage and two bedroom Alan Pye Cottage both have been exquisitely designed and appointed and not only have all the facilities such as fully equipped kitchens (perfect for self catering or for one of Huka's chefs to whip up a delicious feast) but also their own private infinity swimming pools with heart stopping views of the extraordinary surrounds.
The main lodge is home to cosy fireplaces, comfortable chairs and is where guests can gather at breakfast or in the evenings for drinks and canapés to chat about the adventures of the day. Meals can be served here or there are over twenty venues, inside and out, perfect for private dining including the wine cellar, jetty pavilion and the orchard - wherever you choose, the standards for cuisine and service here are exacting and each meal is treated as special.
The activities at Huka Lodge really are endless. From the adrenalin rush of sky diving, white water rafting, jet boating or even bungee jumping to the more relaxing pursuits such as horse riding, sailing, trout fishing and private picnics. The crystal clear waters of Lake Taupo are fed by mountain streams and are home to some of the most sought-after Rainbow trout in the world. Fabulous soothing massage and beauty treatments can be enjoyed in the comfort of your room whether you have had a busy day adventuring or have spent it relaxing by the lodge's tranquil swimming pool.
There are 18 Junior Lodge Suites, a Lodge Suite, a four-bedroom Owner's Cottage and the two-bedroom Alan Pye Cottage. The luxurious Junior Lodge Suites are simple, spacious and light with decadent bathrooms and dressing rooms and the feel of a real retreat with panoramic views of rushing water. The exclusive Huka Cottages are spectacular with both the Owner's and Alan Pye Cottages enjoying their own private stunning infinity pool, spa pool, kitchen, living room and den. There are also six single Escort rooms, simple single rooms that can be used for any staff accompanying guests on their holiday or for children, they can be interconnected with Junior Lodge Suites.
Huka Lodge welcomes children and can provide cots, extra beds and car seats where needed. The Lodge Suites interconnect so are great for families as are the two private cottages where you can choose to self cater. Babysitting is available and children will love the swimming pool, spa pool, mountain bikes, tennis and petanque on site. Children are welcome in the lodge's restaurant for breakfast and lunch and the lodge can provide high chairs, children's menus and children's packed lunches.
Private dining venues are endless at Huka Lodge with the Trophy Room, Library and outdoor deck with fireplace all being very atmospheric. A private chef can also come to any of the cottages with kitchens. The main lodge is used for breakfast and evening drinks where guests can assemble and share stories of their day as well as fine cuisine and wine. There is a tennis court, petanque and croquet as well as a pool complex with one main pool and two spa pools, and indulgent in-room spa treatments.
Tennis is available on site and mountain bikes are provided for guests who want to explore independently. The surrounding region offers a huge array of activities including hot pools, lake activities, fly, jet & raft fishing, water skiing, tandem skydiving, jet boating, white water rafting, hunting, bungee jumping, horse riding, sailing, kayaking, rock climbing, abseiling, golf and scenic helicopter flights.
Charlotte Winter (Staff)
During my time in New Zealand, I was constantly told that Huka Lodge is the luxury lodge that all other properties compare themselves against and, as a result, the lodge had a lot to live up to. However, as soon as we arrived, we were shown what it's all about - excellent service. Upon arrival we handed our car keys over to the valet team and were swiftly whisked away through to the main lodge room for check-in where we enjoyed a warming hot chocolate in front of the fireplace. After a quick tour around the grounds and a close up visit to the fast flowing river, we were shown to our room. The Junior Lodge Suites are the lodge's entry level room but they feel anything but. They are very spacious with a gorgeous bathroom, alpine-esque interiors, and fabulous views across to the river. However, if you're a larger group, it's well worth opting for the Owner's Cottage which is made up of four bedrooms, a private pool and dramatic close-up views of the river.
Although the weather didn't play ball when we were there, as we were travelling through their winter time, the lodge has some super facilities on offer that are well worth making the most of, including a heated swimming pool, tennis courts and croquet set. Make sure you spend a few nights here so you can take advantage of the facilities, as well as taking part in experiences in and around Taupo.
In terms of food, fine dining is on the menu here. Included in the rate is a stunning five course tasting menu, which uses locally sourced ingredients and produce. The food here really was exquisite.
Anna Chaplin (Staff)
Having heard so much about Huka Lodge I was excited to see it and I have to say it didn't disappoint at all. Located on the Waikato River, Huka Lodge invites you to relax amongst the nature that surrounds it. The main lodge where the dining areas are found is warm and inviting and you can feel the history running through it. What I really loved about Huka Lodge was the gardens and open space that stretched across to the river. It really is so peaceful and I was even greeted by some little ducks as I opened my door out to the view. The food is outstanding and the rooms are an inspired twist on a modern Swiss chalet. I highly recommend fitting in a trip to this place if you can!
Jules Maury (Staff)
Nestled on a bend of the mighty Waikato River minutes from the magnificent Huka Falls, Huka Lodge is a beautiful jewel in the Luxury Lodge Collection of New Zealand. Spacious Junior Suites are decorated in a contemporary and beautiful fashion, all with wonderful sweeping views to the river. The jewels in Huka's brown are The Owner's Cottage, a four bedroom retreat overlooking the river along with the Alan Pye two bedroom cottage at the other end of the property. Both are truly anything but a cottage designed with fantastic flair, eclectic taste and simply beautiful furniture, with all rooms overlooking the infinity pools and grounds to the river. Tennis, croquet, fishing and iconic 'must do' moments like the Three Volcanos by helicopter before breakfast' are all what Huka is about. Time has stopped here and the service, location, dining, charm is simply second to none. A MUST on the New Zealand circuit if you can.
Katie Kennard (Staff)
Undoubtedly one of the most beautifully designed lodges on a relaxing riverside setting just outside Taupo. Huka Lodge is the longest standing lodge in New Zealand. It has been recently redesigned, keeping the old structure however it is now exceedingly comfortable and has an elegant feel to it. It is incredibly relaxing particularly down by the river. There are two larger cottages on either edge of the property that would be perfect for larger groups, all with their own bathrooms and private sunbathing decks. These also have stunning infinity pools. The communal areas that are shared by the other 20 lodges are well hidden, so personal privacy can be achieved quite easily, including spots by the swimming pool, veranda, croquet lawn, tennis court and 21 dining options.
Set in a low gorge 300 metres upstream from the Huka Falls, this hotel started as a simple fishing lodge on the banks of the Waikato River and the area still produces trophy size rainbow and brown trout. The Swiss-styled chalets, with overhanging unpainted eaves and a circumambient wooden balcony, house 20 suites. Guests can drink, eat and warm themselves at an ingenious outside fire, placed back to back with that inside the main sitting room. The Owner's Cottage, hidden from view within the park-like grounds, offers the ultimate Huka Lodge experience with four sumptuous rooms. Golf, horse trekking, nature walks, kayaking, aquatic adventure and a wide variety of recreational pursuits are available nearby. Within the grounds, guests have the use of both swimming and spa pools, tennis courts and can play both croquet and petanque. Breakfast, pre-dinner cocktails, a five-course meal, the use of all lodge facilities and Taupo Airport transfers are included in the price.
A Private Full Day Tour of Taupo
Explore the sights of Taupo on a full day private tour in a luxurious Mercedes.
A private tour of Hobbiton - A Tolkien Day Out
Enter the world of Tolkien and discover the magical setting made famous by The Lord of the Rings trilogy and The Hobbit. Once quoted by Peter Jackson as being 'a slice of ancient England', discover the hobbit holes on a guided tour of the movie set.
Cruising Lake Rotoiti onboard Tiua (Shared)
Enjoy a luxury eco cruising experience aboard Tiua – a luxury 53ft catamaran, moored on the idyllic shores of Lake Rotoiti.
Discover the Waitomo Glowworm Caves (Shared)
Sail under a canopy of the thousands of tiny glow-worms that illuminate the Waitomo Caves, their incredible luminescence creating a magical serenity as you glide through the waters of the Waitomo River.
Fly Fishing Taupo - Privately Guided
Get to experience first hand the world renowned Taupo fishery. With your private guide you can be assisted in the art of fishing and finesse your skills in this beautiful and largely unexplored area.
Huka Jet Boating (Shared)
Experience the sheer adrenaline rush of the Huka Falls Jet, as you speed along the Waikato River at an incredible 80km an hour.
Lake Rotorua and Lake Rotoiti Full Day Private Kayaking Adventure
The waters of Lake Rotorua and Lake Rotoiti are yours to explore by kayak as you spend a full day in the scenic surrounds of the lake with your private guide.
Mine Bay Rock Carving Tour (Shared)
Beginning in the sheltered waters of Acacia Bay, explore the secluded Rock Carvings at Mine Bay in the heart of Lake Taupo.
Pure Rotorua Experience (Private)
Experience the best of Rotorua, with a scenic helicopter flight, immersive encounter with a Maori community and a flight to the lunar landscape of the White Island, topped off with a luxury sailing trip to soak in the geothermal waters of the hot pools.
Rainbow Springs and Kiwi Encounter (Shared)
Rainbow Springs is set in 22 acres of beautiful native trees and streams and is home to a huge variety of New Zealand’s wildlife, particularly the shy but iconic Kiwi. This is the place to come face to face with New Zealand's famous avian inhabitant.
Te Po Evening Experience at Te Puia (Shared)
Immerse yourself in Maori culture with an evening of storytelling, food and entertainment, as well as a chance to visit some of Rotorua’s stunning natural sights.
Te Puia Daytime Experience (Shared)
Home to the New Zealand Maori Arts and Crafts Institute, Te Puia is a cultural centre just 5-minutes from the centre of Rotorua. Immerse yourself in Maori culture and visit the Pohutu Geyser during your visit to the Te Whakarewarewa Geothermal Valley.
Tongariro Crossing (Private)
Often described as the best one day hike in New Zealand, the Tongariro Crossing provides an opportunity to experience some of the most scenic, volcanically active areas of New Zealand, to the saddle between the Tongariro and Ngauruhoe mountains.
Active New Zealand
Waiheke Island, Taupo, Nelson, Kaikoura, Christchurch, Franz Josef & Queenstown
from £11400 pp inc flights & transfers for 16 nights
- The perfect holiday for thrill seekers and adrenaline junkies
- Bungy, sky dive, hike, ride, ski and surf your way across New Zealand
- Explore some of the most beautiful landscapes on earth
New Zealand in Style
Waiheke Island, Taupo, Hawkes Bay, Wairarapa, Nelson & Queenstown
from £11300 pp inc flights & transfers for 14 nights
- Showcasing the most luxurious and exclusive properties in New Zealand
- Combines the highlights of both the North and South Islands
- A perfect itinerary for those looking for luxury, seclusion, stunning landscapes and exceptional cuisine
New Zealand in Ultimate Luxury
Bay of Islands, Taupo, Hawkes Bay, Christchurch & Glenorchy
from £20200 pp inc flights & transfers for 17 nights
- Explore New Zealand from the comfort of New Zealand's most exclusive Super Lodges
- Enjoy sublime food, exceptional service, sumptuous accommodation - the utmost luxury in every respect
- Each property sits in an entirely unique location, from wild cliff tops and rolling farmland to beside roaring rivers and crystal clear lakes
Location & directions
Taupo, Central North Island, New Zealand
Huka Lodge is situated in Taupo, in the central North Island of New Zealand. The Lodge is nestled amongst 17-acres of mature and manicured gardens on the banks of the mighty Waikato River, upstream from the Huka Falls.
How to get there
Scheduled domestic flights travel daily to Taupo from Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. Alternatively, helicopter transfers from Auckland, Wellington and Rotorua are available and land on the front lawn of Huka Lodge. Driving takes approx 3-4 hours from Auckland, 4.5-hours from Wellington and 1-hour from Rotorua.
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