North IslandTaupo RegionTaupo

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Photo taken from a campsite

Photo taken from a campsite

Claire Taylor

Plenty of nooks and crannies.

Plenty of nooks and crannies.

New toilets

New toilets

Free Campsite on the Waikato River just out of Taupo.

Please note: Reid’s Farm will also be closed to campers over the winter months to allow rehabilitation work to take place. The closure will come into effect on Monday, June 20 and remain in place until September 30

Free camping is permitted on this recreation reserve. Maximum length of stay up to 7 nights in any consecutive 14 night period.

This campsite is close to town, and can be a popular party venue, especially on New Year's Eve. It's used a lot by travellers and sometimes by school groups. It can be a bit boggy after lots of rain. Quite a few sandflys as it is right on the river.

There is a permanent fire ban on this campsite (NO FIRES), and a complete liquor ban between noon on 27 December and 7am on 4 January.

This is a very popular spot for people learning how to white water kayak, and is the end point for guided kayak tours on the Waikato River.

Facilities are basic - the only water supply is the Waikato River, so we suggest that all drinking water is boiled first. There are no showers or cooking facilities, but refuse and recycling bins are provided. Three older toilets have been removed and replaced with a lovely new triple unit, one cubicle of which has disability access. Two other toilets have also been refurbished making the whole experience much more pleasant. During busy periods, there can be queues for the best toilets so it pays to get up early.

Contact Details

Taupo Address:
5km north of Taupo Township

Operating Season And Hours: Reid’s Farm will also be closed to campers over the winter months to allow rehabilitation work to take place, in line with its reserve management plan. The closure will come into effect on Monday, June 20 and remain in place until September 30

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158 reviews with the most recent first, showing page 2 of 13.

Chris Read's avatar

Chris Read

Ranking: 7/10

Really busy, toilets really smelly but good location.

Reviewed over 1 year ago

Bram and Laura's avatar

Bram and Laura

Netherlands

Ranking: 8/10

Beautiful place, near the river. Toilets clean enough, great for a few walks to the Huka Falls.

Reviewed over 1 year ago and experienced in December 2014

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Anne Hempelt's avatar

Anne Hempelt

Germany

Ranking: 10/10

Nice place and very clean.

Reviewed over 1 year ago and experienced in November 2014

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Polly Rider

England

Ranking: 7/10

Lovely riverside spot - but very, very busy and drink bottles left over in the morning.

Reviewed over 1 year ago and experienced in November 2014

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Hubert's avatar

Hubert

France

Ranking: 9/10

A lot of space, near the beautiful blue river, a lot of people, very big. Toilet clean and recycling bins.

Reviewed over 1 year ago and experienced in November 2014

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CMG

New Zealand

Ranking: 6/10

Nice camping area next to the river, but extremely crowded when we visited. The 3 drop toilets are newly built, but were very full and dirty, and smelled absolutely horrific! Be forewarned! We got there late and left first thing in the morning; the toilets were too disgusting to use.

Reviewed 6 months ago and experienced in April 2015

Miguel's avatar

Miguel

Spain

Ranking: 8/10

Very nice spot near the river Waikato. It's located conveniently between Taupo town and Huka Falls. There's plenty space to camp or place your car, several toilets and you can even have a bath in the river (beware the current, it can be strong!). It's a pity it was so overcrowded, it's a popular place for teenagers to spend the holidays and it was late summer when we stayed there, so it can be worse. The best is that is a FREE camping ground :)

Reviewed over 1 year ago

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Fides's avatar

Fides

Germany

Ranking: 10/10

The toilets are very full and smelly when you are in it, but it is a free campsite directly beside the Waikato River. You can boil the water and drink it. Many crazy people of the river!

Reviewed over 1 year ago

Andreas Schindler's avatar

Andreas Schindler

Germany

Ranking: 10/10

Great place at the river.

Reviewed over 1 year ago and experienced in March 2014

Laura's avatar

Laura

Germany

Ranking: 8/10

Directly on a nice river. Beautiful scenery, extremely dirty toilets, no litter.

Reviewed over 1 year ago and experienced in March 2014

Dominik Schaumburg's avatar

Dominik Schaumburg

Ranking: 9/10

Beautiful, very popular place, lots of people, amazing river.

Reviewed over 1 year ago

Daniel Jarrett's avatar

Daniel Jarrett

United Kingdom

Ranking: 8/10

Scenic campsite right next to the Waikato River. Facilities are basic but the river side setting makes up for it. Perfect freedom camping spot.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in September 2014

Ron Clarke's avatar

Ron Clarke

Czech Republic

Ranking: 10/10

Amazing, We had been touring the north island for 4 weeks pulled in here after the experience of Huka falls and found a freedom campsite in the trees on the fast river better than anything we experienced so far.
I have seen the other reviews and rest assured they have built new toilets and all is good.
I understand it gets busy at high season and I can see why. When we were there it was quiet.
If you like trees, rivers and stunning scenery...for free don't miss this one

Reviewed almost 2 years ago