Waitangi Soda Springs

Waitangi Soda Springs
Waitangi River, Lake Rotoma
Phone: (07) 3620 788
**Please mention nzhotpools.co.nz when you call**

It has been upgraded and much improved. There are changing sheds and the water is deeper. Cost is $10 per adult (cheaper with a concession card). [Geoff Pooch, Hamilton]

A good sized pool that drains via a concrete race into a lower deeper pool. Hotter at the top end of the pool. Enjoy the hot water bubbling up around you while streams of warm (and sometimes cooler) water pass you by. The water has a very high iron content and will stain togs after multiple visits so don’t wear your designer swimwear! [Shelley, Tauranga]

Quiet, very clean place. But water bit hot +44 C on a surface. [Andrey, New Zealand]


If driving from Rotorua, take SH30 towards Whakatane. Turn left at Manawahe Road, just before the petrol station. The pools are on your left about 200 metres from the intersection of SH30 and Manawahe Road where the road curves./n

From Whakatane, take SH30 towards Rotorua and turn right into Manawahe Road about a km after the Rotoma petrol station. [W. Sickling, Auckland]

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Bather Reviews
It was fabulous. Quite unique. The balance of hot and cold throughout the pools made it easy and fun to navigate. Nice depth for young children. Very relaxed and casual. Nothing too flash which made it quite cosy. The staff were very friendly. The hours are extensive! A must to experience!
Rating: 9/10
Wayne Freeman - Auckland
02th October 2019
We are visiting from Australia and have enjoyed the hot springs now and previous visits 2 years ago . We love the natural surrounds and the peaceful location . The hot springs are so relaxing and the natural setting is great. A must when you are visiting Rotorua area.
Rating: 9/10
Helen - Innisfail
22th December 2018

I have been coming here since a kid. It's always had the little dam, don't know why people think this is new? Never had a problem with mozzies, probably happens sometimes though I guess. Water is always scummy, natural texture, sure beats non-natural pools. The iron/manganese can discolour your togs, it'll rinse out. $8 a swim sweet as. People have jobs. This is important, and they give you changing sheds and maintenance. Will always go back.

Rating: 8/10
Kent - Rotoiti
03th November 2018
I remember going there as kid in the eighties. I will always remember one experience I had there. I was in a pool and started talking to a guy, mid to early twenties with long blond hair and black roots. This guy was able to tell me accurately information about myself that someone only who knew me intimately would have known. The memory of that experience has left a lasting puzzle to this day, since then I have always associated the springs with the intangible and the presence of the supernatural.
Rating: -/10
Max - NZ
15th August 2017
Who do you people think you are whineing and carrying on about the entry fee? Shameless!! This is a privately owned stream on privately owned land. The owners have every right to charge you for the privilige of its use. So you used to come here for free? Well lucky you but now you have to pay. Simple really get over it.
Rating: 10/10
Monique - NZ
17th June 2017
Loved this place! It was quiet, peaceful and just off the beaten track. Went here early in the morning (about 8:30 am) and practically had the place to ourselves apart from one local lady who was very informative about the springs and its healing properties. Kids loved it as it wasn't too deep. So much more authentic than many of the commercial operations back in town. Really affordable for a family of five. Highly recommend the Soda Springs.
Rating: 10/10
Joanna - Melbourne
24th September 2016
This was a great place, ive been going there since like forever 1985, a little off the main road but was worth it, nice and open with no buildings, free for everyone as nature intended, so yeah not happy that this has become a money grabber, when ever i visited i would to do my bit to maintain the place, but last time i visited these buildings were there and they wanted a fee so i offered a donation which was refused, so have never gone again so sad really,should have been left alone, maybe a sign stating where you could leave a donation, this was free in open 24hrs a day now people dont know when its open 0/10
Rating: -/10
Kevy - NZ
19th June 2016
due to the disrepect by many back in the days, rubbish, broken bottles everywhere, in out and around the baths .. basically it almost went from a Nice Free Clean baths to a rubbish tip so owners decided to put a stop to it. The results is what you see now, lovely, clean maintained always. If one feels paying an entry is wrong, i suggest one goes elsewhere ..
Rating: 10/10
mar - rotorua
14th July 2016
So lovely to find a heated spring that was not just a swimming pool. Lovely natural surrounds, peaceful (only 3 others there), friendly host, inexpensive and just out of Rotorua. Would recommend to anyone.
Rating: 9/10
Cheryl - Q'ld Australia
01th April 2016
Tena koutou nga iwi, nga hapu nga whanui. I have been travelling to Gisborne and back to Taranaki for many years to surf. It takes 7 long hours, It is the perfect place to stop and refresh. When I jump back in the car I feel so gooood, happy to drive and alert again, The water, the water fall massage, the tiny massaging stones and mud that I wash my skin with makes this experience so good.. I hope the whanau make enough to make a good living,"Soda Springs, more than just a hotpool" kapai to mahi, Tika, te kaitiaki te taonga nga mihi nui
Rating: 9/10
JM - Waitara
03th October 2015
Grew up nearby (Rotoiti), regular visitor in 1970's & 80's, also on occasion in 60's. Very relaxing apart from irregular yobos who would visit. Locals did the best they could to maintain it. I miss burrowing my feet into the hot pumice :)
Rating: 8/10
Matiu - Perth
02th December 2014
I wasn't going to stop here but decided to have a try - the appearance of the pool was great from a distance but up close there was an oily scum and brown floaties which were quite offputting, but it was explained that they were natural occurrences leaching from the surrounding rocks and bush. The water itself was divine, just the right temperature right near the steps and ramp, and the gravelly bottom felt great underfoot. The caretaker, Jo, kindly gave me a bottle of coconut oil to slather exposed skin with as the sandflies were rampant, even though it was a cool day. However I neglected to put it on my legs when I got out, and got attacked something severe. I used a whole tube of anti-itch cream in the next couple of hours, but ended up in Emergency at Tauranga Hospital at 2 a.m. next morning with a severe allergic reaction to the bites. Fixed with antihistamines, but not a pleasant experience. The sandflies are thick and thirsty in the changerooms, so be warned!
Rating: 7/10
Jane West - Australia
28th May 2014
We went here yesterday and were blown away at how much work had been done. From a creek with poor access it is now a beautiful pool in a natural setting. Well worth the money to get in, we came here in the 1970's and 80's for free . Changing rooms, toilets and a beautiful picnic area. Well done we will be back again soon. member these are soda pools don't wear your best bathing suit. Mine was fine but they could discolour.
Rating: 8/10
Pauanui Princess - Auckland
23th May 2014
What a gem of a place. Only found out about it through my mate, who insisted we visit it on the way home to Gisborne. Highly recommend. Can't wait to take my kids there in the July school hols.
Rating: 10/10
Lisa Smith - Gisborne
22th May 2014
Reading some of these reviews I feel a bit annoyed that this website is allowing it to be a tit-for-tat slanging match with some rather rather racial undertones happening. OK, the springs use to be free and very natural, now there is an entrance fee, changing sheds and the sides of the spring have got a wooden wall surround which has made it a bit more 'commercial'. What's to grumble about? The caretakers of this place are doing a good job. You want free, go to Kerosene Creek. You want pristine go to Poly Pools.
Rating: 7/10
Peter - Rotorua
13th April 2014
Absolutely love this place. Beautiful, peaceful and well looked after!
Rating: 10/10
Kassey Downard - Rotorua
09th December 2013
I haven't been here since I was a kid and didn't even realise they charged until I drove out late one night and it was CLOSED :o Good on you for charging I reckon. It wasn't well looked after by the general public. And yes it is expensive in town! My husband and I pay $17 each for general bathing at the poly pools and that's with our locals card. Without it admission is $25!!! I have yet to visit Soda Springs since its upgrade, mainly because I live right next to the poly pools and we also sometimes drive out to Hot and Cold because I work late. Also to everyone moaning, your complaining is made even worse by your poor grammar!
Rating: -/10
R Haumate - Rotorua, NZ
10th November 2013
Our family had a bach at Rotoehu in the late 1950's. We spent many wonderful evenings in the Soda Springs. There was a tiny shop there as well as change rooms. An ice cream was usually enjoyed after a soak and the best sleep ever. I'll be visiting next month and will call to relive old and fond memories. Thanks to the traditional owners fopr their generosity in sharing this treasure with us all over so many years.
Rating: 10/10
Erik - Barossa Valley Australia
25th October 2013
Well, another amazing visit yesterday and today. Water was amazing, as we're the people we met. We will be back to nurture our spirits and be at peace in this beautiful place. Two generations in the healing waters, through the changes, but the water hasn't changed and that's the gift.
Rating: 10/10
Marie McDonald - Morrinsville
07th July 2013
My first time here and a wonderful experience. Very nice considering that nearby pools in town charge almost double the price. I think a small price to pay for changing facilities and such...my only grip is that you need to have warning signs in the changing rooms to not put your head under the water. Our overseas friends who are new to hot springs dived straight in before we could let them know.
Rating: 9/10
HT -
23th June 2013
Kia ora,Aaahhh tino pouri au ki te kite ,ae marika kua taiapahia tenei taonga.I too would travel miles just to bask in these waters at some ungodly hour and enjoy the surrounds.I possess some very fond memories of that place and the local people.Visited there with my wife to be and travelled from Kaitaia in one night to prove a point to my dis-believing mokopuna that such a place existed a few years ago.The absolute delight on her face was joy enough for me.Well I s'pose this had to happen one day and I hold no animosity to the people whom have chosen this path-good on ya!
Rating: -/10
Bowdy Christie - New Zealand
16th April 2013
For many years, mates of mine used to take road trips from Auckland down to these pools as a spur of the moment event. Just jump in the car, and down we would go. Usually ending up at the pools well after midnight.

For hours we would soak and watch the stars, lying as flat as we could in various places to get just the right amount of temperature. Or, enjoy the little concrete slip at the far end with the rushing water (someone always would loose their togs, if we were wearing any at all.) The deeper section after the rushing water was the perfect place to sit and let it beat your shoulders, giving you one rather nice massage.

When we left, I would always clean up any trash I found. We didn't drink, or play loud music, we left the lights turned off, helped other people there with jumps should their batteries be flat.. All in all it was very calming and enjoyable experience. It was in essence a commiserating with nature and good will with all who were attending. I sorrily wish I could convey in text just how calming and centering the place was.

I've not been out there in several years, and wanted to bring a friend to 'Experience what NZ is really about.' I was very dismayed to learn that the entire area has been completely commercialized. Fences, Admission fees, the entire pools have been dredged to make them deeper (thereby destroying how awesome it was) There's even lights all around the peripherie which conflict with seeing the stars. Its as if they went out of their way to completely destroy the experience.

I'm reading a lot of reviews here of people chastising those who balk at the fees, claiming Maori rights and the need to pay some semblance of homage, and that 'payment' is 'money' - That seems pretty disgraceful.

Every time we visited these pools, we absolutely paid. By quiet respect, with cleaning as best we could, respect towards our fellow man and the nature around. We went there to be one with the land, not the 'privilege' of paying $8 to spend 30 minutes soaking in hot water. I can do that at home in the tub, for far less.

Suffice to say I'm very sad to see what happened to these pools, they've completely destroyed this unique part nature in the interests of profit. I wanted to show my friend 'What NZ is really about.' Well, perhaps I should take them to these pools after all, as that does seem to be the case.
Rating: 1/10
Kalt - New Zeland
22th February 2013
To Paki Pooha what buzz or planet are you on???? These hot mineral springs are not funded by the government kare!!! hence the reasons for charging you kare! to use OUR PRIVATELY OWNED resource. btw we don't want you back at the pools using our precious taonga with that attitude so just take your grumpy negative waha to the poly pools and dont come back now ya hearrrrr
Rating: 10/10
Pukaki Grant (My Tipuna Eruini Te Tikao) - Rotorua
19th January 2013
I've been reading all the latest comments about our precious taonga "Waitangi Soda Springs". Thankyou to all those who wrote beautiful comments and who continue to keep coming back to the pools........please keep doing this! as that is why the pool has been upgraded so each of us can enjoy and take advantage of the surrounding fauna and magnificent bird life but as for the charlies who wrote negative comments then I suggest you all go to the Polynesian Pools and pay through the nose there however just remember the sulphur fumes are much higher in concentration than at Waitangi everyone to their own and may we all continue to enjoy our beautiul springs
Rating: -/10
Pukaki Grant - Rotoiti
19th January 2013
Nga mihi, appalling, pay Pakeha pay for the privalege of bathing in our Waitangi ngawha - you have had it tooooo easwy for far tooooo long - what have you contributed to the privilege of using our resource apart from moaning and blatantly showing your arogance - 'pokokoohua maa! For your information Maori who belong to other hapuu have no problems leaving subtantial koha towards the upkeep. So what's your problem with giving a little bit of financial support for the use of these hot springed mineral waters. If your NOT happy go to Polynesian Pools in town and pay $40 a swim, a bath - STOP your 'b' moaning! Show some respect and appreciation - this is a privilege for YOU!!!!!!!!!
Rating: -/10
Tui Matira Ranapiri-Ransfield - Aotearoa
19th January 2013
I lived at Lake Rotoma during the 80's and enjoyed a good soak in the pool, as did my young nephews and nieces when they stayed over from Kawerau and Whakatane, soaking in the pool during winter, and better still while it was raining was great, this was always done at night. Going for a jog early one morning I was shocked as to how dirty and unkeeped the daylight exposed the pool to be. I resently visited the pool while on holiday (october 2012), great job, and in my oppinion the gate charge is too low. Beautiful place
Rating: -/10
Anthony - Australia
28th November 2012
I remember going here when I was a kid it was free then we use to take swims at lake rotoma then mum and dad would take us to soak here good old times it's a shame to see you have to pay now although it's set up really well it has changed so much in the last 10years
Rating: -/10
Serenity Sigley - New Zealand
16th September 2012
We are in our early 60s and used to go there as kids as we both lived in Kawerau in the 1950s. We have fantastic memories and one was always ensured of a good nights sleep after visiting the soda springs.In 1969 when Neil Armstrong walked on the moon we were in the pool with the moon shining and had a black and white portable TV on a polystyrene raft in the pool and were watching the moon landing on TV. We also remember the little ice cream shop there. It was sad to see the deterioration of the pool over the years however Chiefy and Jo and the Trust are to be commended with the upgrade and care they now take in maintaining the pool and the charges are great, only $3 each if you are over 60!! We take lots of friends and family to the pools and they all love the experience. Jos brother John Roberts also loves the visits to the hotpools. Thank you everybody
Rating: 10/10
Neil and Josephine Halvorsen - Gisborne
28th May 2012
After a day of Jet Skiing on the Rotoma Lake which was beautiful but chilly, I was told of these Natural Hot Springs. I paid the small price admission and continued to soak in this natural wonder. Im not sure how the springs work, but it had 2 streams entering and one outlet and the temperature was perfect, with hot spot for the brave. I went back twice while staying at a Rotoma Lake bach up the road. Whatever the negative gripes about this place were formerly, I guarantee they have been cleared up now as the place was a real delight. Good changing sheds too.
Rating: 10/10
Bruce - Auckland New Zealand
22th April 2012
I visit Rotorua twice a year and always enjoy a soak whilst there. Used to always visit the poly pools but lately found them too crowded and expensive. Found the soda springs on the internet and decided to give it a try. Very impressed. The staff were very friendly and obliging. Would recommend anytime to anyone. Will definitly be going back. AAAAA++
Rating: 9/10
Eddie - Whangarei
19th February 2012
I lived at Rotoehu the springs were natural and beautiful I fell in love there. all races met there and enjoyed the warmth and each others company. we were always careful to leave the place tidy so others could enjoy what nature had freely provided . Its an absolute disgrace rubbish around plant life ripped out shame shame on you this was a legacy for all now its a tip so sad so ashamed of what we have become as a people.
Rating: 2/10
05th October 2011
Still my most favourite place to bathe and relax and recharge in Rotorua. I love the tranquility, the soft healing waters, the soda bubbles, the waterfall for massage, the reihana hot spring he taonga tenei..a spiritual place to be respected and enjoyed by all who are lucky enough to find this sacred place...and great local kaitiaki..I recommend my clients to come here after their Romiromi massage to complete their Rotorua wellness experience...the springs have 26 minerals !
Rating: 10/10
Wikitoria Oman - Rotoiti, Rotorua, NZ
05th September 2011
Waitangi Soda Springs used to be my favourite hot pools. No longer after the "development" When it was in natural state it was shallower on the top end. This allowed people to dig a comfortable personal hole at the right temperature. Now the temperature is hotter and when I visited, I felt it was too hot. Another faux I noticed was that they had used tanalised poles lining the pools! Tanalised poles have all sorts of poisons including arsenic! Would you line your home spa with tanalised wood?
Rating: -/10
Henry Van Campa - Nelson
25th July 2011
Hi everyone, we sincerely value you reviews. Please visit us at: www.SodaSprings.co.nz Take care, arohanui, Waitangi Soda Springs
Rating: -/10
Waitangi Soda Springs -
18th March 2011
Called in yesterday. Great experience. Left feeling rejuvenated and thankful to those looking after this place. Can't wait to return.
Rating: 10/10
Aneet Maraj - Hamilton
19th October 2010
My father visited these pools on a regular basis for most of his adult life. He absolutely loved them. The introduction of an $8.00 fee is a cheap price to pay for the immense enjoyment received. Thank you for allowing the public into your pools.
Rating: -/10
Teena - Kawia
13th October 2010
Used to love this place, was really natural and unique. Has been upgraded at my expense no doubt (tax payer) through some Maori Government department, and now they have the cheek to ruin the natural surroundings and charge me even more to use what I have paid for anyway. No way - keep it and I hope it fails as a taxpayer funded "commercial project"
Rating: 1/10
Paki Pooha -
12th October 2010
I love this place so much because it helps me so much to be able to relax. My school Travels there every second Friday. I love it so much!!!
Rating: 10/10
Phoenix - NZ
12th August 2010
The development of this area is outstanding. I loved it before that and I love it now. Thank you for the membership and concession card which makes this opportunity affordable for us to use on a regular basis. I feel so rejuvinated every time after Ive been there. The water contains healing qualities and people have shared with me how it has infact healed their ailments. Some may wish to share this information. I have a friend who when visiting the area always goes to Soda Springs as he suffers from 'patchy' (not flakey)skin. It is cleared up immediately after. The custodians (Chiefy and Jo) couldn't be better suited to running/overseeing the place. They are such generous, passionate and well informed people with so much knowledge about the area. They are fantastic representatives of their iwi. I cannot see how you could have a negative experience at Soda Springs. Thank you for sharing this amazing resource with all - it could have easily been closed off and made inaccessible. All for now. Ka aroha ra, Cindy
Rating: 10/10
Cindy Paraki and whanau - Lake Rotoiti, Hinehopu
27th July 2010
My family & I called in there 1 mth ago to view the bath as Ive recently moved to Rotoma. I personally found the guy (sorry forgot your name) looking after it to be most welcoming & offering a whanau discount. I myself are from Ohinemutu.. Ngati Whakaue & would think most would be happy as to the upgrade. I can see it be a beautiful spot to bathe at night looking up at the heavens. As for the admission I dont see that a problem at all, how are we able too protect & maintain our land if we let all on & in for free. I say well done xx
Rating: 10/10
Mya - NZ
22th July 2010
Just wonderful. Nice dressing sheds and pleasant people running the place. Reasonable prices too. Well done!
Rating: -/10
Norma -
20th July 2010
Wow what a beautiful place to visit and when you whakapap to hear the internal spirit is really alight when out there at the springs and i think it is lovely with the upgrades, although I had not seen it before hand only in photos, Ka pai to the trust doing the work there well done to yous. it seems they are upholding there kaitiaki of this resource.
Rating: 7/10
Sharlene Coe - Rotorua
17th June 2010
Tena tatou katoa. Like everything there will always be people that are not into change. Sorry but it had to happen. When we were young the bath was that deep the surroundings the same(kanuka, manuka water rats mud-yeah mud and gung). To be part of the committee that made the changes was always going to be hard, but it had to be done. Its there now, PLEASE now help us to make sure that it will always look beautiful like now and hope that others see and envisioned what our tupuna would have loved if they were here today. Kia koutou te Komiti kia kaha kia toa kia manawanui. Used it before, use it now will use again
Rating: 10/10
Kotiro Kameta - Rotoiti
29th May 2010
I have lived up the road from these baths all my life. It is home to me. Nothing like soaking your bones in the bath especially when youve had a long weekend.lol. Anyway what I wanted to say is I can remember the shop being there and runnign thru the gate, sliding down on tubes down the old waterfall. I remember going down for a bath and beinng verbally abused by strangers in our baths drinking, I remember running up the road to get our parents. These are private pools, they are part of who we are as Ngati Te Rangiunuora and Ngati Tamateatutahi. As a whanu for years we have shared this resource with local and non-local with no charge. When the repairs started, many locals complained that for years it has been free, and they should not pay. Well this is not the case. If it were to be free who would benefit? If it were free who would carry the cost of repair. Its not the cost at the end of the day, it is the spritual side of it, you never leave felling bad.
Rating: -/10
Renee White - NZ
04th May 2010
The owners are doing their best with limited resources too upgrade these facilities. Why shouldn't they charge a fee, you can get a yearly membership and you will pay a lot more at the Poly Pools. The upgrade was needed as silt was making the pool more and more shallow. To those who complain, go elsewhere as these pools are for the locals really and they don't want wine drinking tourists spoiling these facilities. Would you accept strangers into your swimming pool, I don't think so
Rating: -/10
Ros Black - Kaukapakapa
01th May 2010
Tino Mihinunui e nga Kaitiaki o tenei Toanga. Kia ora mo nga arohanui mahi katoa. Kia Ora mai Tatou katoa." I'm far -far from home looking seaching for pictures to sustain my desire to return home before planned. The spring is one of the many gifts I miss, when so far away. So much history & whakapapa, memories for me and my babies. I remember when the changes were happening there, I was one of the many with whom had concerns, ie,access, admission and the impact on the whenua/land, but I realise now, it was out of my control i was scared of the change and that change comes whether we like it or not. To the Kaitiaki (Caretakers) of this place, thank you for caring, working on the pools and allowing us all to share. The charge has been a long time coming, and the upgrade cash would not have come from thin air and people take advantage as long as they are allowed to. The Native bush will grow back, the dust will settle. Allow the experience to be one of what you remembered, humble yourself, (thats what they have done every time you have visited their land and not asked koha/money of you) Yet Their poeple fought hard for their land, all our Tipuna did. So if its not there for you arohamai (sorry) you may now have to find it elsewhere to create new memories, good luck with that. Honestly. I can't wait to come home and have a soak, sit with my family and enjoy what I can't find anywhere else in the world, until I have to return to OZ earn the money to enable me to live and build on the land I have been gifted though my Tipuna. Untouched, unworked, owing money no doubt, demarding various costs to just live on it. YOU live in a paradise, stop moaning, See everything before you, focuss on the positive things. Feed the healing pool positive thoughts, light energy and unconditional Aroha. Ma te wa. :)
Rating: 10/10
Shannon Taia - Brisbane,QLD, Australia.
06th April 2010
Found the hot springs with the help of nzhotpools.co.nz while on holiday at Ohope. The springs are being done up, the spring has been newly dammed and a lot of work is underway with new changing rooms, benches and walkways. The owner was on site and they said the showers should go in soon. At present there is NO water , Toilet or Shower so be warned. The water was a nice temp however there is no seating in the pool so be prepared to stand. $8 charge is way too high, but once completed will be well worth the price. Pity we never saw the original springs PS bring your insect spray there are 1000’s of sand fly’s
Rating: 3/10
Kevin Swain - Auckland
15th February 2010
Kia ora to the owners, who have made this wonderful place available to us over the years. It has been a real treasure for us. I don't mind paying some money to bathe, but the upgrade hasn't been done with any thought. It has a real 'staunch' feel to it we were made to feel like 'tourists', not travellers. So we won't be returning again, but maybe that was the plan anyway - to keep people away? If so then fair enough!
Rating: 3/10
Simon - NZ
12th February 2010
After a few years of Not going to the springs, we have family from Aussie here and decided to take a trip out last night for a soak, Only to find it all fenced and some guy trying to Charge $8 per head for half an hour! i dont think so, Will not be returning to this spot again
Rating: -/10
S - Tepuke
19th January 2010
Was a lovely, peaceful and quite spot when we visited 4 years ago. The upgraded facilities look OK, but $8 is far too expensive for what's on offer.
Rating: 1/10
David Cox - Chch
15th January 2010

Rating: 1/10
Alison -
01th October 2009
Re-visited recently and couldn't believe what has happened to this 'natural beauty'. I wouldn't mind paying far more if it was kep as a natural beauty spot and totally respect that it is on Maori land but the place looked like a prison camp! What a mess ! The trees and vegetation have been ripped out and the place fenced off with old caravan and freight container moved on. Couldn't read the sign with admission prices and felt too intimidated to drive into the 'compound'. Won't be going back.
Rating: -/10
A - NZ
29th September 2009
is the pools still open anytime of day or are there set hours on them as i may be heading down to have a look at the new upgrade on the pools????
Rating: -/10
john - hamillton
25th September 2009
For those of you who don't want to pay for the privilege of using these hot springs (and yes it is a privilege!!!). My grandfather owned large shares in this landblock which by the way is privately owned maori land, and when he passed away my dad and his siblings inherited them, and now my dad has passed away me and my siblings are the benefactors....how dare those of you who still want a free ride when so much work and upgrade has been done around the baths by our trustees including charging new admission prices and insisting that it should still be free! my advice is to those clowns just buggar off somewhere else. [some text removed - admin]
Rating: -/10
Pukaki - Okere Falls
21th September 2009
Stopped there yesterday (Sat 30/08) after driving down from Auckland to have a soak. Have known about these hotpools since growing up around Rangitaiki plains and my Dad coming here when I was a kid. Great to see the upgrade.. this place is a little treasure *thumbsup* Andy.
Rating: 7/10
Andy - NZ
30th August 2009
My family and I have lived in Rotoma for well over 20 years and our hotbath is very special to us. Our kids have always thought of it as their own and treat it with the utmost respect. Gone are the days our kids had to clean up after filthy bathers to save their nan and koro and bubbahs cutting their feet on broken bits of woody bottles. Nappies were pretty damn rampant too. So yup awesome job and a $30 annual fee per family? Can't complain. It's about time things changed down there! Tumeke!!!
Rating: 9/10
J McKinnon - Rotoma
28th August 2009
I've been going here since i was a kid and still do, its a lot nicer now with the upgrades - i see someone else has moaned about the generator noise - i would recomend either getting rid of it or finding another option - and perhaps chaning the lights to be low wattage red lighting - as not to ruin the view of the stars - i know its impractical - but the stars are so awesome out there it seems a shame to hide them with light. The brazier is a nice touch though. shot.
Rating: -/10
Richard - New Zealand
14th August 2009
Of course we had a karakia before the upgrade began, do you think that we're insensitive neanderthals or something. Kei te pai tera, because my children and I will be bathing there for many years to come. Maybe when people have feelings of something being wrong, it's probably our tupuna telling them to 'move along'. FYI - the trust meets annually, contact details for the trustees can be obtained from the Maori Land Court in Rotorua, ph 07 921 7402.
Rating: -/10
Nelson Meha - Rotoiti
12th August 2009
The trustees have done a magnificent job over the last few years organising the upgrade of our bath, this isn't about making money, it's about maintaining and preserving this taonga for all. Now imagine what the headlines would have been if there was a sign out the front that said "NO TRESSPASSING - OWNERS ONLY", cmon people, lets stop all the moaning - if you don't want to pay the $8, just go somewhere else.
Rating: -/10
Nelson Meha - Rotoiti
31th July 2009
This used to be an amazing spot and extremely spiritual. A taonga. Yes, it suffered in recent years from idiots leaving their mess behind, and that is due to their ignorance over how special the place was. More recently, it has suffered at the hands of the trustees who are supposed to be the guardians. They have used bulldozers and diggers to widen and deepen the stream and they have put in a dam to block the natual flow. On top of that, they have put up buildings and are charging an admission, so it is clear that this is not just about making the place tidy. In my opinion, in their rush to cash in on their resources, they have forgotten that this was a taonga. Was. What made this place so spiritual, and an incredible place for healing, is now gone (and I am not the only one who has noticed this). I feel sorry for their mokopuna, who will now never know what this place was.
Rating: 1/10
Squirrelly - NZ
31th July 2009
I will be going somewhere else, and it is not about the money. It is about preserving a taonga, and you cannot preserve a natural taonga with diggers and dams. I would not have cared as much if Tresspassing signs has been put up and access closed off at least it would have still been a place of healing. Has the site even been properly blessed since the 'upgrade'? When I was last there it felt like it hadn't. It felt wrong. But then most people only care about what they can see.
Rating: -/10
Squirrelly - NZ
31th July 2009
Kia Ora whanau! I am a journalism student at Waiariki and am currently wanting to write a story on the baths. I have been trying to find out how to get ahold of any of the commitee members for an interview and am unsure how I can do this. If somebody can let me know, I just need to find out a little bit of informationa about the place. That would be much appreciated!
Rating: 7/10
Hinerongonui Kingi - New Zealand
30th July 2009
hi there, the upgrade is great the pool is deeper and the area is cleaner. however the great thing about this place is that it used to be completly natural now with the buildings up and fees it is ruined. NZ wont be NZ for long if stuff like this keeps happening.
Rating: -/10
isaac holmberg - tauranga
13th July 2009
My advice for anyone who does not like the "admission price" or for that matter the mud,porta loo and noisy generator to go 15min the other way to Kawerau and use the 8x10 spa pool at the Maurie Kjar memorial swimming pool for free!
Rating: -/10
Alan -
12th June 2009
does anyone know the hours when it is open?
Rating: -/10
rawinia - waihi
07th June 2009
Kia ora tatou, My understanding is that the admission price is there to assist with the upgrade and on-going costs of the bath i.e. maintenance etc. At the end of the day, our bath is on private land (Maori freehold land title, known as Waitangi 3 - go to the Maori Land Court in Rotorua if you require further details). Non-owners need to be thankful that it has stayed 'admission-free' for so long, because the other option was that the bath could have been closed permanently and trespass notices put up. The bath was in a terrible state before the upgrade, rubbish everywhere etc, and it's thanks to the current trustees that it is in such a great state now. Also, the commercial reality is that the trust needs to source it's funds from somewhere to maintain things and unfortunately 'aroha' can only get you so far. So congratulations to the trustees - job well done. And for those who don't like the 'admission price' the Polynesian Pools is only a further 30 minute drive and a $14 - 20 admission fee away. Na tetahi o nga uri o Ngati Tamateatuthi-Kawiti. Haumi e, hui e, taiki e
Rating: -/10
Nelson Meha - Rotoiti
03th June 2009
This spring is no longer noncommercial.As of today there is a substantial fee to use this spring and set hours of use. For a family of four to use this spring once a week for a year (which we have for the last 3 years)will now cost over $650.00! This is outrageous and I am sure this "fee" will be unaffordable to many locals.
Rating: -/10
alan - Rotoma
31th May 2009
Thank you to the local folk for the gift of sharing this wicked spot to all.As we get older things dont work as well,so after a hard days fishing it is a real blessing to soak away and relax.Sitting in the pool at nite is a wonderful exsperience,many thanks GP.
Rating: 10/10
G Pemberton - Tauranga
16th May 2009
The trustees have worked really hard doing the pool up, They actually closed the bath to do the upgrades but we still got idiots pushing the fence down and actually moving the new changing sheds off it's foundations. We get visitors who bathe there and think it's their right to drink and leave their rubbish there. When they have completed the renovations i hope there is going to be a charge to visitors. People need to respect our taonga not abuse it kia ora
Rating: 10/10
Puti Hammond - Rotoiti
14th May 2009
I have been visiting soda springs since I can remember. I have many fond memories of this place. After a tangi me and my family would go down for a nice hot pool. As I got older I would take my friends there and be very proud of the place. For me it is a very sacred place. The fact that there are not many natural hot pools around these days means it is very special for me. Not to long ago I visited the hot pools again and was very impressed by the new changes. I know there has been talk for years to update the place but I was still suprised to see it actually happen. I am currently studying journalism at the moment and am wanting to write a story about the hot pools. To write up a story on a place which has done so much for me will be the least I could do. To everyone who wants to visit the place or visits the place,try not take it for granted. It is a gift.
Rating: -/10
Hinerongonui kingi - Rotorua
05th May 2009
this place is very spiritual and in all my years of going there i have seen the decline in respect for the springs from young twits going there to drink and leaving their beer bottles everywhere...please help curb this by taking down the license plates of those people and reporting their behavior...Sadly this has resulted in the springs being fenced off and security measures been looked at i personally take away a bag of rubbish every month me and my partner go there people need to wake up and respect that these place are unique to New Zealand and every one visiting needs to do their bit in preserving its natual beauty.
Rating: 10/10
alan and kelly - new zealand
07th April 2009
Currently undergoing major reconstruction which was due to last 2 weeks. 3 weeks later we are unsure as to what will happen with this once lovely "natural" hot spring.
Rating: -/10
Steve - Rotoma NZ
03th March 2009
i have been going to soda springs every christmas holidays since i was a kid. it is so relaxing ther and a great place to just get away
Rating: 10/10
crystal cooper - te awamutu
12th January 2009
I've been going to soda springs since I was a kid. Everytime we came home for a tangi (tapuwaeharuru marae) our aunties would take us kids for our evening bath there. Was awesome. A couple of years ago I took my own kids there and was quite disappointed as there was broken glass and rubbish all over the place. I knew about the water rats which actually served as entertainment for my kids. I haven't been back there since.
Rating: 8/10
Tash - Wellington New Zealand
11th May 2008
Advised by one of the locals that the sandflies (biting midges) are only active during the day and best to visit at night. They were very fierce and would not recommend for children, as they can get nasty allergies to the bites.
Rating: -/10
Leonie Hayes - New Zealand
15th October 2007
I have been visiting this pool for 61 years and had never noticed the large water rats until recent years and figured this was due to some grubby humans leaving their rubbish about. A natural beauty, sadly getting ruined by the human race.
Rating: 9/10
Olive Oyl - Whakatane
24th May 2007
Keep up the great work!
Rating: 7/10
Leigh - Japan
12th April 2007
didnt realise we needed permission to bath here...sorry! great pools tho, it's a nice to sit in the flowing warm water. a local we spoke to said that they might be building a new bridge across soon. thoroughly recomended!
Rating: 8/10
sam - new zealand
29th April 2006
The stream pool is on the side of Manawahe Road [off of State Highway 30] between Lake Rotoehu and Lake Rotoma and drains into Lake Rotoehu. A boiling hot pool on the property has water running under the entrance driveway to join a cold-water stream at the top pool end. There is a large parking area alongside the stream pool which has natural banks and bottom and has grass on its banks. A beautiful setting!
Rating: -/10
Colin Schwamm - Dargaville, New Zealand
30th November 2005
Has been recently upgraded, water is hotter than I've ever known it. Wonder why? Respect it as a sacred place and remember that most hot pools in the area you should not submerge your head. This is an exception though. Enjoy.
Rating: 8/10
Annette - Rotorua
12th August 2005
This pool area comprises two parts - an upper part which is shallow - up to half a metre deep and ideal for sitting in and enjoying and is very safe for smaller children. The lower pool is deeper but smaller. This pool is fed by a short concrete spillway from the upper pool. A great neck massage can be had as the water flows from the spillway into the lower pool. [Ross Johnson, Auckland]
Rating: -/10
Ross Johnson - Auckland
11th August 2005
A good sized pool that drains via a concrete race into a lower deeper pool. Hotter at the top end of the pool. Enjoy the hot water bubbling up around you while streams of warm (and sometimes cooler) water pass you by. No changing facilities so turning up in your togs is a good idea. The water has a very high iron content and will stain togs after multiple visits so don't wear your designer swimwear! [Shelley, Tauranga]
Rating: -/10
Shelley - Tauranga
11th August 2005
What a special place this used to be. Currently abandoned but used to be a well maintained and cheap hot swim available to all. A small shop, changing sheds, picnic sites, bambi deer were all once here. Romance bloomed in the dark steamy waters and you slept like a top afterwards. The hot waters still bubble up but the energy or funding to renew this natural attraction is missing.
Rating: 5/10
Stuart - Riverhead
11th August 2005
Beautiful hot springs but sick of people using the area as a rubbish tip. Have even found broken beer bottles in the pool. Areas like these are sacred to Maori and should be treated with respect.
Rating: 8/10
G - Rotorua
10th August 2005

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Jeanette Water
Waitangi Soda Springs
Waitangi Soda Springs
Waitangi Soda Springs
Raphael Lam Soi Meng
Raphael Lam Soi Meng
Raphael Lam Soi Meng
Alan and Kelly
Source: April 09
Alan and Kelly
Source: April 09
Alan and Kelly
Source: April 09