The Central North Island region of New Zealand features the Lake Taupo area and the mountain volcanoes of Tongariro National Park, all situated on a volcanic plateau in the middle of the North Island. The lake, famed for its trout fishing and boating, fills the caldera of one of the largest super-volcanoes in the world, in a still active geological region.
The southern end of the Taupo Volcanic Zone is in the central North Island. From there it extends northwards through Rotorua and out beyond White Island in the Bay of Plenty. About 26,000 years ago, Lake Taupo was a volcano that erupted in an enormous explosion that ejected about 800 cubic kilometres of material and spread it over the central North Island, forming the Volcanic Plateau. The resulting hole in the ground became Lake Taupo after it filled with water draining off the surrounding hills. It last erupted about 1,800 years ago.
Today, Lake Taupo feeds the Waikato River with the water to run eight hydroelectric power stations.
InterCity is a national coach company.
The Northern Explorer train passes through the central North Island on its way to Auckland (northbound train) and Wellington (southbound train).