What to do and Where to stay in
Home to amazing landscapes and cosmopolitan cities; Auckland in the north and Wellington in the south, the North Island is an incredibly versatile destination. Soak up the Maori culture as you travel through this fantastic island and enjoy highlights along the way including unspoiled beaches in Great Barrier Island, spectacular hiking in Waikato, wine tasting in Hawkes Bay, and geothermal marvels in Rotorua.
Itineraries you might like
Experiences in North Island
Auckland is likely to be your arrival point and it’s well worth staying for a few days to explore the world-class facilities, perhaps starting with your visit with a trip up the 700 foot tall Sky Tower to get your bearings (the brave are able to freefall here). Nearby you can explore the Hauraki Gulf and islands for wine tasting, kayaking and dolphin spotting or coastal lovers can head further north to the Bay of Islands. Take to a boat on the stunning harbour, quad bike on 90 mile beach and perhaps visit the Kawiti Glowworm cave! Learn more about the local maritime history including a visit to the historic village of Russell, the site of New Zealands’ first European settlement.
Heading back south to the centre of the island, Taupo and Rotorua offer visitors the chance to try a Volcanic helicopter safari, white water rafting on the Kiatuna River, zorbing and luging! Afterwards rest your weary limbs in a bubbling hot pool and explore the traditional heartland of Maori culture. You can also dip in to Lord of the Rings countryside nearby. Stay on a 6,000 acre working sheep and cattle farm at Cape Kidnappers near Hawke’s Bay and you’ll have the opportunity to search for Kiwis using radio tracking or try a cycling wine tour along the coast. If you are planning to head further South, it’s well worth stopping off in Wellington to spend time at the excellent Te Papa Museum and relaxed Waterfront area.
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