The Chris Jolly Outdoors guided hike and cruise combo is a package deal that takes you on an adventure from Kinloch to Kawakawa. A 4WD will collect you and your party and whisk you to the start of a scenic two-hour hike to Kawakawa Bay. Once you have journeyed to your collection point at the edge of Lake Taupo, take a deep breath and enjoy the western lake views before heading off. A stunning launch will take you across Lake Taupo’s azure waters, while you lunch on sumptuous food on deck. Wine and beverages will be provided to you and your party and afterwards, you will have the option to either fish, skeet shoot, visit the Maori rock carvings or all three. A gentle cruise into the Taupo Marina and you will be escorted home. Please note our guests must have a medium fitness level for the hiking section. The entire journey will take 5 hours excluding travel time to and from your accommodation.
See the best of land and lake that Taupo has to offer
The Chris Jolly Outdoors Guided Hike and Cruise Combo
Transport to and from your accommodation by way of guide driven 4WD
Beverages and alcoholic refreshments provided on board the Launch
Two hour guided hike from Kinloch to Kawakawa Bay in the Western Bays suburb of Taupo New Zealand
Lunch on board the Launch
Please note you will need a medium fitness level to complete the hike portion
Optional activities of clay bird shooting, fishing, Maori Rock Carving viewing.
Visiting Taupo New Zealand to Cruise the Lake? Helpful tips and facts:
Your guides are English speaking
There is no dangerous game in NZ
No poisonous insects or snakes or spiders (no snakes at all)
Rivers are Fly Fishing only
You’ll always receive the best Kiwi Hospitality!
The guides and skippers are experts at what they do.
Be Weather Wise On Your Adventure
Weather in Taupo varies from 2 to 22 degrees Celsius depending on the season. It rarely snows in the Winter at lake level with the Summer months able to get quite humid, between 70-90%. Bearing this in mind, please bring seasonally appropriate clothing and polarized sunglasses.
Tips for what to bring on your hike and launch boat ride:
Event appropriate clothing
Swimwear and a towel if you plan on swimming
Boat friendly footwear
Take in the landscapes and immerse yourself in the most pristine vistas the world has to offer
Be Weather Wise On Your Hike and Cruise Adventure
Weather in Taupo varies from 2 to 22 degrees Celsius depending on the season. It rarely snows in the Winter at lake level with the Summer months able to get quite humid, between 70-90%. Bearing this in mind, please bring seasonally appropriate clothing, polarized sunglasses.
The Ngātoroirangi story begins with Te Huatahi Susie Gilbert of Ngāti Tūwharetoa. Susie asked her grandson Matahi Whakataka Brightwell to create a likeness of her ancestor Ngātoroirangi on a totara tree to create a permanent connection for her family to the land.When Matahi arrived in Taupō, there was no totara tree to carve, so he journeyed onto the lake for inspiration and found the rock alcove at Mine Bay. The alcove then became the canvas for one of the most extraordinary contemporary carvings in New Zealand. Ngātoroirangi is surrounded by smaller sculptures depicting tupuna (ancestors) and kaitiaki (guardians). Ngātoroirangi towers 14-metres above Lake Taupō and is regarded as a significant North Island tourist attraction. Ngātoroirangi is a true showpiece of New Zealand’s cultural artistic ability.
"we had an outstanding guide and we thoroughly enjoyed hanging out with him"
Explore the wonders Lake Taupo and its rugged coastline has to offer, enquire now.
The Cruise To Plant Project
Chris Jolly Outdoors is committed to planting trees in an effort to protect and enhance Aotearoa’s natural environment. All passengers on Chris Jolly Outdoors scenic cruises will have a dollar from their ticket price go towards the planting project with The Opepe Farm Trust. This is one of the first planting initiatives for Chris Jolly with the future goals being to offset the boat charter service and to become carbon neutral. The partnership with The Opepe Farm Trust will help to ensure that the right trees are planted for sustainability. The Trust is passionate about protecting the environment for future generations and has the knowledge and expertise to guide the project. Together, we can make a difference in the fight against climate change and help to preserve our natural environment.
As the trusted activity partner for things to do in Taupō for forty years, Chris Jolly Outdoors will take care of you during your stay here. From absolute relaxation and fishing crystal pools to exciting hikes in the wilderness; we are the go-to guides to tick off that bucket list.
In Taupō, the possibilities are truly endless. But one thing is sure; we will create a memorable experience for you that you’ll treasure forever. Put yourself in the picture with us, and book with us today.
Five private charter boats for small or large functions up to 140 pax with full catering/bar/fishing equipment and an exclusive personal crew
Access to private land, water and know-how of local’s secret spaces
Corporate events & team building.
Reliable and Experienced
We’re a family headed by Chris’s son Simon Jolly with a number of the Jolly clan still working within the team
We’re a bunch of fishing, hiking, boating, biking, and bush experts with experienced staff who can teach you a lot about the Taupō region.
We’ve spent forty years in the industry taking care of people’s holidays.
Gold Qualmark rated (5 star rating NZ)
Our Fly fishing guides are Orvis endorsed, a globally recognised mark of excellence
Partners with Ngāti Tūwharetoa (TMGH) with a focus on growing Māori Tourism for Taupō
What is the best way to learn how to fly fish?
One of the best ways to learn how to fly fish is on a half-day flyfishing experience with a Chris Jolly Orvis endorsed guide.
Is Lake Taupō fresh water or salt water?
Fresh clear and largely drinkable water. We would recommend drinking from a stream as running water is best.
Does anything dangerous live in or around Lake Taupō?
Taupō, and New Zealand in general have no native or imported predators, there is one kind of poisonous spider (very small) called the whitetail, but a quick GP visit and some antibiotics after a bite and you'd be right as rain. It is the reason why we have So many gloriously fat fish and large flightless birds. The biggest threat to New Zealand's ecosystem is introduced vermin such as ferrets, cats, possums and rats.
How long has Chris Jolly Outdoors been around?
Forty long and wonderful action packed years.
What clothing is best for hiking, hunting, fishing or being outdoors in Taupō?
Conditions are changeable in Taupō, so it's best to be prepared! The local's joke that Taupō can have four seasons in a day!
Hiking boots with good ankle support and grip, or other sturdy footwear
Sun hat or warm beanie – pack one and wear the other (we lose 70% of heat through our heads alone!)
Sunglasses – wear or pack, NZ has harsh sunlight.
Base layer: top and leggings in polypropylene/wool, quick dry shorts or pants
Mid layer: long-sleeved top in wool or polar fleece – wear or pack depending on the weather
Gloves in polypropylene/wool – wear or pack, only in Winter really.
Socks in polypropylene or wool ( a spare pair is always a good idea)
A good exterior layer:
Wind and waterproof jacket with hood – wear or pack depending on the weather
Waterproof overtrousers optional
I’m planning on going hiking while in Taupō, what should I bring?
Day pack with a waterproof liner (no one likes wet clothes)
Drink bottle – 2 litre, per day you will be out.
Packed lunch and snacks – if you are coming on a guided hike with us here at Chris Jolly Outdoors we can cater your hike
Fully charged mobile phone
Personal medication, eg antihistamines, asthma medication
Extra base layer and socks
Map of the area you'll be walking - if you are being guided you will not need this, we will direct you.
if you are coming on a guided hike with us here at Chris Jolly Outdoors we will make sure to have the following list on hand.
Basic first aid kit including hand sanitiser, sunscreen and insect repellent
Head torch/torch and spare batteries in case you take longer than intended
Survival blanket to keep you warm in an emergency
Whistle in case your split up or need help
Extra high energy snack food
Can you swim in Lake Taupō?
We would advise a good quality wetsuit if you're going to attempt it in winter! but December through to March it is absolutely beautiful to get in to that fresh crystal clear water.
Does it get cold in Taupō?
Taupo can get to -1 or 2 degrees celsius in Wintertime, with icy winds coming straight off the central plateau mountains. It is best to pack woolly layers and definitely a wind/waterproof jacket.
Are there any native birds around Taupō?
Tui, Fantail and wax eyes are amongst the beautiful birdsong that serenades lake Taupō's verdant native bush.
Can kids drive the boat?
Yes! If you ask the skipper nicely.
Is jumping into the lake allowed off the boat?
It is encouraged! Show us your best bomb, the more water spray, the better.
What should I pack for the boat?
It is always a good idea to pack the basics, sunscreen, insect repellent, a muesli bar or two, your own full water bottle, togs, a towel and a spare change of clothes and a warm jersey. The wind can go right through you on a boat so layering up is always pragmatic! A wise person packs a raincoat on a sunny day, just in case.