• Hobbiton Movie Set – Hamilton & Waikato

Explore Central North Island – Ultimate Experience!

11 Days / 10 Nights – Auckland > Hamilton & Waikato > Rotorua > Taupo > Ruapehu > Hawke’s Bay > Gisborne > Whakatane/Tauranga > The Coromandel

The ultimate Central North Island experience, tour the Pacific Coast, Thermal Explorer Highways and the Volcanic Loop, experiencing the diversity of this compact & easy to get around region!

DAY 1:

Depart Auckland and follow the Thermal Explorer Highway. As you depart Auckland city you will notice the rolling green hills and pastureland that are synonymous with the Hamilton & Waikato region. Make your way to Waitomo Caves where you can enjoy a wide range of underground activities – from peaceful glowworm viewing tours to adrenalin-fuelled adventures – please click here for full information. Following this make your way to Hamilton City to overnight, there are a number of accommodation options to choose from please click here for full information.

DAY 2:

Enjoy the morning in Hamilton City before making your way further along the Thermal Explorer Highway to Rotorua.  En-route you may wish to divert and visit Matamata, home of the Hobbiton Movie set from The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings Movies. On arrival in Rotorua, home to exciting geothermal activity, there are a wide range of accommodation and activity options to choose from please click links for full information.

DAY 3:

You have most of the day in Rotorua today to enjoy the wide range of activities on offer from a lake cruise, immersing yourself in Maori Culture, visiting the geothermal areas and spas to adventure tourism – Rotorua has so much to choose from.  In the afternoon make your way to the Lakeside town of Taupo. Lake Taupo is New Zealand’s largest lake and dominates the views from this picturesque region. There are a range of accommodation options to choose from please click here for full information.

DAY 4:

You have the day in Taupo today, visit the spectacular Huka Falls or partake in one of the many adventure activities on offer from tandem skydiving, to jet boating and bungy jumping, be prepared to be thrilled. Or if you would prefer a slower pace there are range of activities to chose from please click here for full information.

DAY 5:

Make your way early this morning to the Ruapehu Region, home to the Tongariro National Park, this dual World Heritage Park is home to some superb ski-fields in the winter months and also offers some great hiking and walking adventures. Home to the Tongariro Alpine Crossing which is an outstanding 19km walk (a full day activity) there are also other walking options in the area or you can chose to visit the Whanganui River please click links for full information on accommodation and activities in the region. Overnight in Ruapehu.

DAY 6:

Make your way to Hawke’s Bay today travelling along the Thermal Explorer Highway, enjoy this half day drive to arrive in the stunning Art Deco capital of New Zealand, Napier. This afternoon enjoy some of the fresh food and wine that this region is well known for, visit a winery or take a tour to the Cape Kidnappers Gannet Colony. Please click links for full information on accommodation and activity options.

DAY 7:

Enjoy a day in the Hawke’s Bay Region, please click links for full information on accommodation and activity options.

DAY 8:

Make your way from Napier to Gisborne today. The drive along the coast will be breathtakingly rugged and beautiful.  The Tairāwhiti Gisborne region is the first region in the world to see the sunrise every day. Your journey today will be one of discovery, the first Maori explorers and Captain Cook arrived on these shores, which are also very popular surfing spots these days.  On arrival in Gisborne you will have the choice of a range of accommodation please click here for full information.

DAY 9:

Enjoy the morning in Gisborne (perhaps visit Mt Hikurangi to see the sunrise), before continuing along the Pacific Coast Highway, around East Cape to Whakatane, here you may wish to enjoy a day trip to White Island an active offshore volcano. This is a lengthy drive and there are some great places like Hick’s Bay where you can overnight to break the journey if you would like to take things at a slower pace. Or overnight in Whakatane, or continue on to Tauranga where there are a range of accommodation and activities to choose from please click on links for full information.

DAY 10:

Enjoy the morning in Tauranga or Whakatane before continuing along the Pacific Coast Highway to The Coromandel – enjoy the day in The Coromandel, perhaps visit Cathedral Cove or Hot Water Beach where at low tide you can dig a hole and enjoy a soak in the warm water or partake in one of the many coastal or outdoor activities on offer. There are a wide range of accommodation locations and options as well as activities in this region, please click on the links for full information.

DAY 11:

Enjoy the morning in The Coromandel before making your way to Auckland.