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Whakamaru Travel Blog

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Lake Whakamaru south towards Atiamuri
About 30 minutes South West of Tokoroa along State Highway 32 is the small village of Whakamaru.  Blink and you'll miss it but you won't have any problems noticing the reason it exists. 
  As you drive into the village from the forest you'll have Lake Whakamaru on your left and air to your right.  You'll be crossing the Whakamaru Hydro Dam, one of seven strewn along the Waikato River.

This is one of the reasons why people enjoy Tokoroa so much.  Apart from the fact it's in the heart of farming country and surrounded by thick forests and mountains, there are several hydro lakes all within an hours drive of the town.

As high school kids the parties on the shores of Lake Whakamaru were legendary.
Whakamaru dam in afternoon
  Sadly I never experienced any of those ones but I certainly had a fews good times with friends here when we were so inclined.

As a scout I also spent several nights camping in the area and kayaking across the top of the lake or down below the dam on the river.

The fishing is meant to be very good here too.  Can't say I've ever had the patience to sit and wait for something to take bait I can't see but all my best to those who do!

On either side of the Lake you will find great free camping spots, picnic areas, and places to put the boat out. 

On the Western side there are still a couple of handfuls of the cottages built by the government to house the staff building and running the dam.  These days they're owned by non-residents and used as holiday homes. 

There is a small shop with a video outlet and a tearooms/takeaways as part of the business but the nearest township is Mangakino, about 15-20 mins north of the village.
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Lake Whakamaru south towards Atiam…
Lake Whakamaru south towards Atia…
Whakamaru dam in afternoon
Whakamaru dam in afternoon
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photo by: goezi