Rotorua MP Todd McClay says the idea that Rotorua is the second-worst town in the country is ridiculous and offensive.

The people behind the S**t towns of New Zealand Facebook page were idiots, the MP and caretaker Trade Minister said.

"In fact their comments are offensive and the authors should apologise."

The anonymous creator of the page has received nearly 20 death threats since starting the page two years ago.

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Many of these death threats were from people in Cromwell, which the page's creator deemed the country's worst town.

Posts on the page described Rotorua as "New Zealand's toilet" and claimed the city smelled like a toilet.

Mayor Steve Chadwick was less concerned than Mr McClay by the page's claims.

"We shouldn't take this seriously. We know Rotorua's a great place."

Newly-elected Waiariki MP Tamati Coffey said people came a long way to visit Rotorua and experience the smell.

"It is New Zealand's most scented town that visitors pay a lot of money to come across the world for."

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One post also claimed it was the worst place in the country for violence and theft.

People on the Rotorua streets disagreed with the Facebook page's claims about the city.

Tourist Marcus Geary, who is visiting from Perth, said he liked Rotorua and the local people.

"You notice the smell when you first land, but you get used to it. I love the intimate feel of this town, it's cosy.

"I've come over from Australia where people can be quite harsh, everybody over here is lovely."

One woman called the list ridiculous and a man originally from Northland said there was nothing wrong with the town's smell.

"The smell is nature at its best, there are dollars in that smell," he said.

"We love this town and the people in it."

The page's creator has said the page was intended as a joke.

"There have been some people who haven't taken the joke the way it was intended."

A number of other towns around the country were featured on the page, including Oamaru, Masterton, Dargaville and Queenstown.

Rotorua MP Todd McClay said the people behind Facebook page S**t Towns of New Zealand should apologise. Photo/File
Rotorua MP Todd McClay said the people behind Facebook page S**t Towns of New Zealand should apologise. Photo/File

Mr McClay pointed out that Rotorua was popular with visitors from around the world.

"Rotorua is a great place to live - millions of visitors think so each year. Our population is growing almost as fast as our reputation as a high quality international tourist destination.

"I am very proud to call Rotorua my home."