Lake Tekapo, the tiny town with an old stone church by the lake of the same name, is the perfect place to relax after hiking in the Mount Cook / Mackenzie Basin region. After a long day of hiking it’s hard to beat a relaxing soak in the Tekapo Springs hot pools. These pools look out over Lake Tekapo and the surrounding mountains — it’s one of the main attractions in Lake Tekapo and is a great way to spend a couple of hours.
Hot Pools in Lake Tekapo: Tekapo Springs
Tekapo Springs is located at the Mount John end of Lake Tekapo, close to the camping ground. You can walk there from the main part of town. There are also heaps of parking if you choose to drive.
There are three main pools, each named after different lakes in the region; Ohau, Pukaki and Tekapo, with temperatures ranging from 36.5 to 38 degrees Celsius. We headed straight for the top pool called “Tekapo” as it’s a child free zone, it’s the hottest and has the best views. The pools are quite big, so even though Tekapo Springs is a popular spot you’ll be able to find a little area to call your own.
Other Things to Do at Tekapo Springs
- Aqua Play Area: If you’re travelling with children, Tekapo Springs has a kid friendly area called Aqua Play which features a shallow pool with interactive water jets, fountains and showers.
- Godley Deep Pool: If you’re after a more challenging swim, check out Godley Deep Pool, which is at 1.8 meters at its deepest end.
- Steam room / Sauna and Day Spa: Tekapo Springs also features a sauna / steam room and a day spa. We ran into my cousin in the cafe and she raved about the massage she’d just had (yip, New Zealand is a small place!). There are different entrance packages– we got one which included the sauna / steam room which made for a perfect way to end our relaxing experience.
- Ice Skating: You can also do some ice skating at Tekapo Springs in winter / early spring and there are also stargazing tours which include night swimming on offer. Or, like us, you can stick to the relaxing waters of the hot pools until your fingers get too wrinkly.
The cafe serves a variety of snacks, light meals and drinks. We had a burger and some waffles with ice cream which were good, but the coffee with ice cream was the highlight (this is coming from someone who isn’t a huge fan of coffee) The cafe has outdoor seating which overlooks the mountains surrounding Lake Tekapo. There are also plenty of seats inside with a cozy fire. The cafe is open to the public, whether you’re taking a dip in the hot pools or not. This works if you have a big group and not everyone wants a swim (but who doesn’t like to swim?) The Tekapo Springs cafe also doubles up as a bar later in the day.
Are you planning a road trip around New Zealand? Check out our two-week South Island itinerary!
Disclaimer: We were hosted by Tekapo Springs. All thoughts and opinions are our own.
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