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Northern Explorer

Auckland to Wellington
Trip Code: NTAW8
  • Trip Highlights
  • Map & Itinerary
  • Travel & Accommodation

Trip Highlights

Islands for Every Occasion

Cruise the Bay of Islands, home to 144 islands and take in the sights of small coves and sandy white beaches.

A Wonderful Stay

Enjoy an overnight stay in Wellington, New Zealand's capital, and take the time to explore its best-loved landmarks.

Glow worms at Waitomo

Visit the mesmerising Waitomo caves and see thousands of tiny glowworms illuminate the limestone walls

Your Vacation Includes

  • Immersive Insider Experiences
  • 7 Breakfast and 3 Dinners
  • Expert tour director plus local guides in select locations
  • Arrival and departure airport transfers in New Zealand
  • Luggage porterage

Map & Itinerary

New Zealand Map NTAW8 2019/20

Auckland to Wellington

Designed exclusively for our guests
INSIDER EXPERIENCE

Enjoy a range of included special or unique excursions and events

Upon arrival in Auckland, you will be met and transferred to your hotel.

Stay: Rydges Auckland Hotel

INSIDER EXPERIENCE

After breakfast this morning, you will take the journey north to the Matakohe Kauri Museum which details the story of pioneering settlers of the Kauri industry, as well as the legacy of Kauri forests.


See a mighty Kauri tree and marvel at its size at the Matakohe Kauri Museum. Unique to New Zealand, local Māori people considered these giant trees to be the kings of New Zealand’s forests, while European’s used the wood to construct sturdy spars for their ships, resulting in a rapid decline of the native forests. Today, this forest is heavily protected and new saplings are continuously planted. Later, continue further north to the stunning Bay of Islands, an area that symbolises the birthplace of the nation as the site of the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840. After settling in to your hotel, enjoy a Welcome Dinner tonight.

Stay: Two Nights, Bay of Islands, Kingsgate Hotel Autolodge Paihia

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

The Bay of Islands is home to 144 islands providing a beautiful aquatic playground off the north coast of the North Island. Today, after breakfast, you will enjoy a full day at leisure to explore the idyllic subtropical surrounds, said to have some of the bluest skies in the world. You might like to spend some of the day relaxing on one of the pristine beaches or exploring the lush wilderness areas via one of the many walking tracks. In the main town of Paihia, weatherboard shops line the peaceful waterfront promenade and a smattering of white boats bob up and down on the harbour. Known as the ‘Jewel of the Bay of Islands’, this is the gateway to the region’s beaches and islets, and the perfect base from which to explore.

Daily :
  • Breakfast
INSIDER EXPERIENCE

Explore New Zealand’s finest maritime park on a cruise to Cape Brett.


The captivating coastline of the Bay of Islands provides sheltered waters for dolphins, whales, seals, penguins and other marine life, so keep a look out while enjoying the remarkable scenery. Onwards lies pristine Motukokako Island, home of the fabled Hole in the Rock. The area is not only spectacular but also a place of significant cultural importance, entwined with early Māori history. When the tide is right, boats can sail right through the narrow 18-metre-high hole, just as local warriors would once do before heading into battle. Afterwards, return to Auckland by coach and enjoy dinner.

Stay: Rydges Auckland Hotel

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
INSIDER EXPERIENCE

Discover the magical natural spectacle of Waitomo Caves with a local guide.

INSIDER EXPERIENCE

Enjoy a Māori Hāngī feast with performances of song and dance.


Travel to Waitomo, home to the famous glow worm caves where thousands of tiny luminescent creatures radiate an unmistakable glow. Continue on to the geothermal capital of New Zealand, Rotorua. At Te Puia - New Zealand’s premier cultural centre - enjoy a guided tour of the Māori Arts and Crafts Institute, during which you will see the incredible Whakarewarewa Thermal Valley and witness geysers erupt and mud pools bubble. Delight in the opportunity to dine and interact with locals who will enchant you with their customs and cheerful hospitality.

Stay: Two Nights, Sudima Rotorua

Daily :
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

Rotorua captures the essence of New Zealand with its geothermal geysers, fascinating Māori culture and rich heritage. The city is positioned on the Pacific Rim of Fire, and is therefore one of the world’s most active geothermal areas. Your sightseeing continues with a visit to one of New Zealand’s best-loved attractions, the Agrodome, with its entertaining sheep shearing demonstration, dog trials and animal nursery. Later, perhaps enjoy an optional helicopter flight for views over the active White Island volcano (own expense).

Daily :
  • Breakfast

Departing Rotorua, travel along the Thermal Explorer Highway through a region abundant with geothermal activity, crystal-clear lakes, natural spas and rich Māori culture. Stop on the shores of Lake Taupo - the largest freshwater lake in Australasia - and marvel at thundering Huka Falls with its striking blue water. Continue south across the vast volcanic plateau of World Heritage-listed Tongariro National Park and on to Wellington for an overnight stay.

Stay: Travelodge Wellington

Daily :
  • Breakfast

Take in the sights of Wellington today on a guided sightseeing tour. Your journey comes to an end as you are transferred to the airport.

Daily :
  • Breakfast

Travel & Accommodation

Hole in the Rock cruise

Keep watch for dolphins as you cruise to the famous Hole in the Rock formation in the Bay of Islands

Jewel in the Bay

Perfectly positioned with views out onto the Bay of Islands, Kingsgate Autolodge Paihia is the perfect base to explore.

An Enticing Welcome Dinner

Savour regional flavours with a delightful Welcome Dinner at the Bay of Islands.

As a family-owned company with origins that date back to 1927, we know how to make a great holiday extraordinary

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