Journey to the Māori Rock Carvings in comfort and style with a stunning tour of the bays. We've been looking after people like you for over 40 years, and our 90-minute tour on the Lake is on your list of the 'top things to do in Taupo'.
With live commentary and spectacular viewing platforms, let us host you while you are here. Free homemade muffin and a hot drink included in your ticket on the 5pm Knight Rider! We offer comfortable booth seating for all ages, full amenities on board, lots of kids activities and we have two levels with viewing platforms to get you close to the carvings. Cruise Cat is large and spacious with excellent all weather options.
Story of the mĀori Rock Carvings
The story of the rock carving of Ngātoroirangi begins with the artist’s grandmother. Te Huatahu Susie Gilfbert of Ngāti Tūwharetoa 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.
The rock alcove at Mine Bay became the canvas for one of the most extraordinary contemporary carvings New Zealand has ever seen. Surrounded by smaller sculptures depicting tupuna (ancestors) and kaitiaki (guardians), the carving now towers 14-metres above the deep water of Lake Taupō and is one of the North Island’s biggest tourist attractions.
NGĀTOROIRANGI – ONE OF NEW ZEALAND’S MOST EXTRAORDINARY ARTWORKS
Wheelchair access is dependent on Lake water levels and size of the wheelchair. You must call the office to book prior to travelling to see if the wheelchair can be accommodated during the cruise. Note that there is no wheelchair access to the toilets onboard.
In the event of bad weather, it may not be possible to view the Māori Rock Carvings. This decision is made at the discretion of the Skipper for the Health & Safety of all onboard the vessel.
“My wife and I booked Waikere II for my Birthday Celebration. Firstly I want to say the day and the experience was amazing, thank you! The Skipper was great as were the other crew members and the boat suited us fine. The food was delicious and quantity just right. Everything was Fantastic and everyone on board had a wonderful time.“
“Sometimes it feels a bit funny to be a tourist in your own country, but it can be so rewarding. My wife and I did a guided bird watcher walk on a beautiful Saturday morning and are so glad we did. The guide taught us about local plants, birdlife and history of the area. Now I’m telling everyone how to call in a fantail!”
“Thank you so much for looking after us on holiday. Your guide was awesome, and we really enjoyed his knowledge of the local area. Having him support the kids up the hills was incredible, and so worth the view”.
“Blown away by the location. Thanks boys, we will be back”
“Your entire team are absolute gems, no doubt about that. Every request was catered for, and how you worked those activities logistically was astonishing. One group was biking, the other rafting, boating and hiking – the team are still talking about it – they were fizzing!”
“My first time on the river and my guide was exceptional! Thanks, guys, I’m hooked!”