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Five Mile Bay Reserve

star rating of 4.5

by Chris Gaelic

State Hwy 1, Wharewaka, Taupo , Waikato

rvexplorer id: 19022

Lat-Long: -38.7452, 176.06893

Lake front parking

Lake Taupo from the parking area

Five Mile Bay Path

DOC Freedom Camping sign

DOC long drop toilet


ALERT 11-Jul-2020: 

Since 12-Jun-2020, freedom camping is no longer permitted on this prime location. After transferring ownership to the local iwi, Ngāti Tūwharetoa, as part of a treay settlement, the iwi have locked out all vehicle access indefinately.


No good reason has been given, and the Taupo District Council are not planning to make any alternative area available for motor caravanners on the lake front. 


Lake Taupo is an amazingly beautiful location, surrounded by beautiful reserves and picnic areas that can be enjoyed by anyone in a car. There is no longer anything for motor caravanners to enjoy, self-contained or not. 



Five Mile Bay Reserve has a large sealed area on the lake front where self-contained motor caravanners can freedom camp.


We were driving past on our way from Taupo to Turangi when we noticed a group of motorhomes parked alongside the lake front, and decided to stop and have a look.


The Department of Conservatoin (DOC) have created a large parking area in a prime location on the shore of Lake Taupo specifically for freedom camping. 


If you enjoy parking right on the lake front, and prefer to be away from all the tourist hustle at Taupo town, then this is about as good as it gets.


We were very impressed and would happily have stayed for a while if we din't have to continue on to Turangi enroute to an Autotraill Users Rally in Ohakune the next day.


There is also a walkway along the lake front.


Picnic table by the lake




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