This is New Zealand's most inland tidal lake. It is freshwater and is over 20km's from the coast at Taieri Mouth.
Covering an area of 9 km's it is 6 km's long with an average depth of under a metre.
It is the larger of the two lakes which sit side by side with the internationally renowned wildlife haven that is the Sinclair Wetlands in between.
Waihola means "spreading waters" in Maori and is famous for its black swans and reflections on a calm day.
It's a watersports mecca with fishing, boating, kayaking, rowing and water skiing. There is also a rather lovely cricket ground next to the lake's edge.
It's a great spot to get off the SH1 and take a break and there is fresh fish from the coast just over the hills for sale (fresh or fried).
The lake was also used as a short cut during the gold rush with the greedy barons getting on a paddle steamer up the Taieri river and across Lake Waihola. Prospectors would then cut across the hills to Gabriels gully (where the first big nugget was found in 1861).
30 million year old whale fossils are not far away with a lovely lookout over the lake.