The drive from Napier to Taupo isn’t as long as Wellington to Napier. In fact it’s about half the distance, not as tiring, and we did not need a break.
Just before reaching Taupo, the stretch of thermal explorer highway was most enjoyable. Some parts into the drive, there were no reception on phones. We noticed this lookout sign and went for it to find a poor lonely horse with a miserly carrot for it’s feed and a nice waterfall.
In less than 3hrs, we arrived at Hilton Lake Taupo. A resort/ apartment like hotel located right within Taupo Holiday Park where we spent 2 nights in our 1BR apartment with a glimpse of mount raupehu on a clear day.
Other facilities in the hotel included an outdoor heated pool, a sufficiently sized gym, sauna/ steam room and bicycles for hire.
Service was great and prompt. The only thing we thought could be better was if the walk to our apartment lift could be shorter, and if the access card would not be faulty so often (other guests had the same issue, the access just would not work). Other than that, we loved our stay at Hilton Taupo and would love to be back again.