The Waimangu Volcanic Valley is the world’s youngest geothermal system. It was a result of the 1886 eruption of Tarawera that significantly enlarged Lake Rotomahana and created new craters. In 1900, a new geyser erupted. Waimangu is home to the Frying Pan Lake which is the largest hot spring in the world. Waimangu’s unique ecosystem provides a valuable setting for scientific studies focused on thermophilic organisms, plant succession in extreme environments, and the ongoing influence of volcanic processes on landscape formation.

Of particular interest in the Waimangu Volcanic Valley are Frying Pan Lake, the world’s largest hot spring, and Inferno Crater Lake, renowned for its dramatic geyser-like activity. Furthermore, the valley’s past – which includes the lost Pink and White Terraces, destroyed in the Tarawera eruption – highlights the dynamic and sometimes destructive power of volcanism while serving as a potent reminder of the region’s geological volatility.