Te Rata Bay (Hot Water Beach)

Name: Joanne
Rating: 2/10
on 29 April 2014

What a disappointment!! The walk along the new track was great, it was new, had good signage and toilets along the way, well done, plenty of money spent on that. Nice stop on the lakeside along the way. However the pleasure of it all ended when we got to the lake. No signs…where do we go? Tried along the beach but that ended at the water, then we ended up wandering in the trees along goat tracks that were not marked and through a bit of litter left behind by lazy campers till we reached the campsite. Don’t understand why the rest was so well marked and then a FAIlL when we got near the destination. The campsite was fine but the lake was a huge disappointment. Out front of the campsite it was full of lakeweed. People had pulled loads of it into piles which were decaying and it just looked rank. Some kids showed us their very nasty rashes all over their legs that they said they got from the lakeweed, very nasty, really there should have been a warning it was so painful looking. So no soaking in front of the campsite. Further down where there is no weed, it was very shallow and either too hot from the the water coming out of the sand or too cold. it really wasn’t somewhere as they had advertised as having a soak in the warm waters. You could only stand in it and try and find a patch that didn’t burn your feet. It was either too cold or too hot. We took the water taxi out the next day and they took us to some other hot pools. This was created by a small dam and very pleasant but was many other boaties were there it was very crowded and it was only about knee high in depth so it was like being in a warm bath with a lot of people. It appears the advertising of this spot sounds idyllic soaking in natural hot water springs in nature on a lakeside. The reality is not, slimy weed, shallow water, burn your feet. Everyone in the campsite said that it was Ok if you were spending your time there if you had a boat and did some waterskiing but just for the hot pools, nope not the place to go. Definately wouldn’t recommend it. I believe this place has been quite falsely advertised.