Region's sights featured in Lonely Planet

By Matthew Martin

Three spectacular "must see" sights in Rotorua and the Bay of Plenty have been acknowledged by one of the world's most respected travel publications.

Lonely Planet has published a 40th anniversary book 1000 Ultimate Sights to celebrate the company's birthday.

The 352-page book features 15 sights from around New Zealand with three from Rotorua and the Bay of Plenty.

1000 Ultimate Sights features 100 "Top 10" lists exploring the world's most breathtaking man-made marvels and natural wonders.

Waimangu Volcanic Valley was ranked forth best natural spring in the world, Pohutu Geyser in Whakarewarewa was ranked fifth greatest geyser and White Island was ranked fifth best volcano by the respected publication.

Destination Rotorua Marketing general manager Oscar Nathan said it was another good news story for the region after Rotorua's mountain biking trails were named in the top eight in the world by The Red Bulletin magazine in May.

"It's tremendous to see Pohutu Geyser and Waimangu Volcanic Valley make it on this list.

"Seeing the likes of White Island on there as well, which albeit isn't in our immediate vicinity, but is a huge draw card for us and visitation across the wider region, is also great to see.

"It goes to show how important and valuable our natural assets and resources are to our overall [tourism] proposition," he said.

Waimangu Volcanic Valley staff member Lone Clausen said it was wonderful to be included as one of the world's top tourist sights.

"We are really lucky to be able to work at the best volcanic attraction in Rotorua. The Inferno [crater] is absolutely beautiful as is our lake [Rotomahana]," she said.

Other New Zealand sights to feature were Auckland's Sky Tower as second-best breathtaking viewing platform, the Rainbow Warrior as sixth best underwater sight, the Shotover River by speedboat was ranked seventh best mightiest river and Northland's Tane Mahuta was ranked forth most iconic tree.

- Rotorua Daily Post

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