Huka Honey Hive

Huka Honey Hive located in the Wairakei Tourist Park is New Zealand’s largest showcase of honey products.

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Pohutukawa Honey on display at Huka Honey Hive

Huka Honey Hive is located 65 Karetoto Road (off Huka Falls Road and SH1). It is open daily from 9am to 5pm in the summer and 10am to 5pm in the winter.

On the left side of the store is an educational area with live bees in glass hives and a variety of displays on bees and the honey making process.

Glass hives

Glass hives

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Antique beeswax press

A large part of the space is taken up with very well presented displays of the various honey and bee related products they sell.

Undoubtedly the most popular attraction at the Honey Hive is the free tastings of honey, and mead wine and liqueurs. There is a limit to tastings but there is no pressure by staff to buy.

There is also an onsite lounge that serves honey flavoured ice cream and hot and cold beverages. I had a Lemon Drone for $7, which is a spider (Charlie’s Honest Fizz Lemonade poured over Kapiti Pohutukawa Honey Ice Cream). Single scoop ice cream is $4, double scoop $8, and ice cream sundaes are $7.50.

Free honey tasting

Free honey tasting

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Candles

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Buzzy bee toys

Bee soft toy display

Bee soft toy display

Taupo Volcanic Activity Centre

Taupo’s Volcanic Activity Centre is an interactive educational centre where visitors can learn about the earth’s volcanic forces and the Taupo Volcanic Zone located in Wairakei Tourist Park.

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Taupo’s Volcanic Activity Centre

The Taupo Volcanic Zone is an area 350 km long by 50 km wide from Tongariro National Park through to Rotorua and out to the Whakatane submarine volcano just past White Island.

Taupo’s Volcanic Activity Centre is located at 114 Karetoto Road (at the T intersection). It is open Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm and weekends 10am to 4pm. The centre is closed Christmas Day, Good Friday and ANZAC Day morning. Children (5-15) are $7, adults $12 and seniors and students are $10.

There is parking outside the centre. Alternatively the Taupo Connector bus departs from Taupo I-SITE and Visitor Information Centre and arrives at the Volcanic Activity Centre.

Taupo Volcanic Activity Centre

Taupo Volcanic Activity Centre

When I visited few of the buttons on the interactive displays did not work, so some of the displays are in need to some maintenance but other than that it has interesting well presented informative displays.

There are models that show a live geyser and tornado. Visitors can control the tornado to make their own twister.

Visitors can also an earthquake equivalent to 6.3 quake on the Richter scale in the earthquake simulator. 6.3 was what Christchurch earthquake at 12:51pm on February 22nd, 2011 was on the Richter scale.

Earthquake stimulator

Earthquake stimulator

There is a also cinema, which is regularly running short films, such as footage from the Christchurch earthquake and Mt Ruapehu erupting.

There is also a gift shop, which sells a variety of books, DVDs, puzzles and posters. They also sell gems and rocks.