Confronting the Huka Falls
The Huka Falls are the largest falls on the Waikato River, near Taupo on New Zealand's North Island. It is the most visited waterfall, and one of the most visited natural attractions in New Zealand!
The Waikato River is NZ's longest river - it stretches a massive 425km on the North Island. The river drains Lake Taupo - the largest freshwater lake in all of Australasia - and from there it descends to the Huka Falls, then meanders through the Waikato Plains until it reaches the Tasman Sea.
At the Huka Falls, the Waikato River which is normally 100m wide, is squeezed through a 20 metre wide gorge and over an 11m drop.
Up to 220,000 litres of water each second gushes through the gorge and shoots out over 8m beyond it to create a beautful aqua coloured white water pool.
The name Huka is the Maori word for 'foam', which is appropriate as the falling water and rapids certainly resembles foam, especially under flooding conditions.