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Buried Village of Te Wairoa

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Address: 1180 Tarawera Road | RD 5 Rotorua, Rotorua 3076, New Zealand
Phone Number:
+64 7-362 8287
Website
Today
09:00 - 17:00
Closed now
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Hours:
Sun - Sat 09:00 - 17:00
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Fee: Yes
Description:

Experience New Zealand's most visited archaeological site where stories of...

Experience New Zealand's most visited archaeological site where stories of the 1886 Mt Tarawera Eruption come to life!

Violent and unexpected, the volcanic eruption was one of New Zealand's greatest natural disasters burying the peaceful village of Te Wairoa and ending more than 150 lives. Today at the Buried Village encounter the world class Museum of Te Wairoa, explore the Archaeological Site which once housed the people of Te Wairoa, experience the unique insights of stories from our tour guides, and take the Waterfall Trail which showcases the stunning Wairere Falls.

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Book In Advance
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US$24.88*
and up
Buried Village of Te Wairoa Tour
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US$207.85*
and up
Rotorua Eco Thermal Small Group Full-Day Tour
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US$161.01*
and up
Tauranga Shore Excursion: Rotorua's Whakarewarewa Valley and Buried Village

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 761 reviews
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  • 23
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  • 7
    Terrible
Museum & falls walk are worth the entrance fee alone

Very interesting museum telling the story of what happened on the eruption of Mt Tarawera in 1886 to the people in this village & the surrounds, some sad stories but also some... read more

4 of 5 bubblesReviewed 2 days ago
NaomiBUK
,
London
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761 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 723: English reviews
London
Level Contributor
233 reviews
79 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 64 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

Very interesting museum telling the story of what happened on the eruption of Mt Tarawera in 1886 to the people in this village & the surrounds, some sad stories but also some stories of heroism. Nice walk around the remains of the village & then a lovely walk to the beautiful falls which are well worth visiting, says the loop... More 

Helpful?
Thank NaomiBUK
Plymouth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
119 reviews
30 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

We love this kind of personal, historical insight into times gone by. It's a lovely walk through the village/trees/waterfall/river. The steps are very steep up and down to the waterfall, but worth it if you're relatively fit.

Helpful?
Thank Lee F
Salford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
80 reviews
36 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 days ago NEW via mobile

Well worth a visit to this museum and site, which did a seniors entrance at $30 each. We spent nearly 2 hours here, with a museum full of information, artefacts and displays on the massive disruption and loss of lives as a result of the 1886 eruption and valley fracture. The lives of the people involved in the Victorian tourist... More 

Helpful?
Thank suesalford
Auckland, New Zealand
Level Contributor
40 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 days ago NEW

The Buried Village (Te Wairoa) is located close to the shore of Lake Tarawera, 14 kilometres southeast of Rotorua. On 10 June 1886, Mount Tarawera erupted violently and unexpectedly, the village was destroyed by the eruption, becoming one of New Zealand’s greatest natural disasters. The Buried Village is open to the public and recovered relics as well as the devastating... More 

Helpful?
Thank Sightseeingsuzy
San Jose, California
Level Contributor
31 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

My whole family thoroughly enjoyed this visit. Extremely interesting to walk around and learn of the tragic events that happened here. Good little cafe with lunch items available.

Helpful?
Thank Carlukegirl
Woodbridge, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
43 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Well worth a visit if you in the area,very good value, lovely walk around the site. We learnt a lot about the history of village Fantastic waterfall at the end

Helpful?
Thank Chapmans4g
Salem, Oregon
Level Contributor
3 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Enjoyed the in depth historical presentation of an event that rocked these people's world when the volcano blew. Nicely presented inside and a walking path around the village showing the actual buildings that were damaged.

Helpful?
Thank paulaf0nt
SUDAMERICA
Level Contributor
225 reviews
52 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 138 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

I'm sorry to say that because the staff is really nice and I understand that it's a private place so they must afford it alone but frankly speaking what you see is not big deal and it's too much money for what you get.

Helpful?
Thank NEWSTED1981
Pam M, General Manager at Buried Village of Te Wairoa, responded to this review

I am sorry to hear that your expectations of the Buried Village were not quite met. The dwellings in Te Wairoa village were built of natural materials that deteriorated quickly after the Tarawera eruption when the area was deserted. The excavations show the original floor levels, and in particular show the level of mud that covered the area after the... More 

Chester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
35 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Quite a pleasant walk and the entrance "museum" was enlightening however the excavations left a little to be desired. Ona positive note, the drive from Rotorua takes you past The Redwoods, the Blue lake and the Green lake, thus made a decent tourist afternoon. As the lady in the entrance / exit foyer informed us, there is a wonderful outlook... More 

Helpful?
Thank Graham R
Pam M, General Manager at Buried Village of Te Wairoa, responded to this review

Thanks for your recent review of the Buried Village and I am sorry to here that you were a little disappointed in the excavations. The village is a unique Rotorua experience. It is a privately owned and funded business, and has been redeveloped by three generations of the Smith family. This has seen many sites excavated and the award winning... More 

Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 weeks ago

I called ahead to check out a group rate for 15 students, 3 educators. The telephone was answered by Margaret who couldn't have been more helpful. After hearing about the educational mission of my group, she readily agreed to a group rate of $10 per head which was an affordable admission. When we arrived at Te Wairoa we were met... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank Glenn M
Pam M, General Manager at Buried Village of Te Wairoa, responded to this review

Responses like yours make our day. Thanks so much for such a comprehensive and descriptive review. Lake Rotomahana was the focus of a 19th century tourist boom, with the people of Te Wairoa prospering from ever increasing visitors to their land. This way of life ended abruptly with the eruption of Mt Tarawera in 1886. The personal accounts of this... More 

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