• Explore Rotorua

Explore Rotorua

There are many things that may spring to mind when thinking of New Zealand. Maybe you’ve seen some of our picturesque landscapes while watching the Lord of the Rings or caught a glimpse of our much-loved sports team, the All Blacks in action on the rugby field. However, what you may not know about our country is that we’re natural thrill seekers and like to do things outside of the box with our ‘kiwi ingenuity’ and can-do attitude. These are just some of the reasons of how a small country at the bottom of the world has managed to invent a range of activities for visitors to experience that are now famous around the world. 

But don’t just take our word for it, check out this list we’ve compiled below of epic adventure experiences that have been invented right here in New Zealand! Spoiler alert – most of these experiences were invented right here in Rotorua!  

ZORB Rotorua 

An obvious must do on your visit to New Zealand is ZORB Rotorua. Invented in 1994 by Andrew Akers and his friend Dwane van der Sluis, who originally wanted to walk on water and created inflatable shoes. After some testing and trialling they moved onto a single skin sphere to play in the waves but were worried they’d be floated off to Timbuktu! They moved onto rolling down hills and downhill ball rolling was invented. Fast forward 20 odd years and ZORB Rotorua is now the largest commercial ball rolling site in the world and still owned and operated by Andrew and his brother David, who runs the factory where all of our ZORB balls are lovingly manufactured.  

AJ Hackett Bungy 

Quintessentially Kiwi and an absolute must-do for any visitor to New Zealand is bungy jumping. AJ Hackett created bungy jumping after being inspired by a tradition in Vanuatu, where he watched people jumping from wooden towers with vines attached to their ankles. Hackett then created a system of plaited elastic bands, and this invention received worldwide attention when he jumped off the Eiffel tower in 1987. Hackett went on to create the world’s first commercial bungy site in Ohakune in 1988. Fast-forward 30 years, and New Zealand has now become the home of the bungy with various AJ Hackett bungy sites around the country including Taupo, Queenstown, and Auckland. You can also experience Rotorua bungy down the road with our friends at Velocity Valley.  

The Skyline Luge 

Another epic kiwi adventure that was invented here in New Zealand is the Skyline luge. The luge is a unique three wheeled gravity ride for all ages and abilities. The luge was invented in New Zealand in 1985 and has 6 locations across the world including Rotorua and Queenstown. Riders have full control over their speed and direction with a unique steering and braking system. All components of the luge are designed and manufactured in Rotorua and distributed around to the various locations around the world.  

Jet Boating 

Jet boating was invented by Bill Hamilton. Growing up he wanted to explore the shallow rivers surrounding his family farm. In 1954 he developed a new style of boating and the world’s first propeller less. From humble beginnings the jet boat has allowed access to rivers and waterways all over the world. There are a range of jet boat options in Rotorua, including Katoa Jet on Lake Rotorua and Velocity Valley offering the Agrojet on a custom designed course. 


Another quirky kiwi invention by our mates at Velocity Valley is the Shweeb. Invented by cyclist Geoff Barnett, the Shweeb is the world’s first human powered monorail racetrack. The custom designed plastic Shweeb pods are suspended on metal rails along a dual 200m track allowing you to race friends and family! With seven gears and a whole lot of pedal power you can reach speeds of up to 45km/h! 



So, no matter what style of adventure your cup of tea is, you will be guaranteed to find the thrill you’re seeking right here in Rotorua. Making memories that will last a lifetime.  

March 23, 2022


School holidays are coming in hot this weekend, we know what we will be doing...what will you be doing? #rolling #rotoruanz #thingstodonz #zorbrotorua #fun
Wondering what you can do on a rainy day in @rotoruanz? Since you're going to get wet (nice warm water included) anyway ZORB is a pretty good option 💦🌧️ #zorbrotorua #rotoruanz #thingstodonz #fun #newzealand
Slippin' and slidin' into the end of the week 💦 #zorbrotorua #thingstodorotorua #rotoruanz #thingstodonz
🕺🏼Our Operations Manager Owen is switching out his chucks for dancing shoes for this years @rotoruahospice  Dancing for Hospice. Vote for Owen and Hamo (sponsored by our mates at @vipplumbing_gas_rotorua) for people's choice and donate to an incredible charity while doing so, link in bio. #twinkletoes #zorbrotorua #rotoruanz
There's a reason we are supporting the @nzfootballferns from the sidelines this @fifawomensworldcup 👀🤪

Catch us in our football number ones on
New Zealand game days for the duration of the cup 🎉

#zorbrotorua #thingstodorotorua #thingstodonewzealand #rotoruanz
School holidays started off with a bang! We are rolling rain, hail or storm - come and see us 💥 #zorbrotorua #rotoruanz #thingstodorotorua #thingstodonewzealand
It's that time again.. Darkest Night is back for 2023 🌚

All the thrills and spills except without the daylight.

Tickets from $20pp 🔥

We've paired up with our mates at @teshascoffeecart to offer delicious food, real fruit ice cream and hot drinks to keep you warm and of course the main event...rolling down the hill in a ball in the DARK! 

For more information and to book tickets check out the link in our bio. 

- Saturday 24 June 2023
- 5:00pm - 8:00pm

#zorbrotorua #rotoruanz #DoSomethingNeWNZ
Finally some sunshine for our long weekend, no better way to spend your King's Birthday weekend (rain or shine) than rolling down a hill 🤩. Open all weekend long 9am - 4pm. #ZORBRotorua #rotoruanz #fun #longweekendvibes
You asked, we delivered.. 🤪 **Do we have to remind you that these stunts have been performed by trained professionals and not to try at home?**
#ZORBRotorua #rotoruanz #thingstodorotorua #thingstodonewzealand #fun #crew #donttrythisathome