Summary of The Day: Haere mai (welcome)!
Begin your flexible journey through New Zealand's North Island as you hop aboard our comfortable bus. First up on our route today is a trip south to the Coromandel Peninsula, passing through the colonial town of Thames. This region is renowned for its natural beauty and pristine swimming beaches, the perfect place to kick back and relax for a couple days.
We’ll get settled into our beachside accommodation in Hahei before heading over to Hot Water Beach (tidal dependent). This is an absolute ‘must do’ experience where you can dig your own natural spa bath in the sand and soak up the Coromandel surrounds.
Tonight you have the option to join a group dinner for a classic Kiwi BBQ.
Summary of The Day: Enjoy a full free day to embrace the laid back lifestyle that makes Hahei such a popular NZ holiday destination. Make the most of this special place by taking a scenic walk or kayak to the nearby Cathedral Cove, a paradise-like beach that you might recognize from one of the Narnia films. If you prefer water sports, the coast off Hahei is part of the protected Te-Whanganui-a-Hei Marine Reserve, which is a prime place to go scuba diving, snorkeling or take a glass bottom boat tour.
Summary of The Day: From Hahei we'll make an early departure into the Waikato region, heading towards Raglan. We'll stop along the way to have a little adventure into Bridal Veil Falls, where a short walk through beautiful native bush leads to an impressive cascading waterfall.
From here we'll arrive at the world-renowned surf town of Raglan. There’s no better place to learn to surf; but if you don’t fancy a splash in the waves, the afternoon is free to watch the surfers from the beach or enjoy a bush walk. Chill out or go hard in this arty surf town.
Summary of The Day: Departing early, our first stop on route to Rotorua is at Waitomo, a small rural town where it’s main attraction is in fact underground. Don’t miss out on the opportunity for a seriously cool caving adventure that will have you wading, climbing, abseiling and tubing through Waitomo’s magnificent cave network.
From here we'll continue on to Rotorua where you have the opportunity to make this a 10/10 day with a visit the world famous Hobbiton Movie Set (own expense). Explore the hills, gardens and houses that were home to Frodo and Bilbo in Peter Jackson’s epic trilogies.
Those not interested in Hobbiton will continue on to Rotorua and be joined by the Hobbiton goers in the early evening.
Summary of The Day: We'll depart at midday, leaving the morning free to get involved in one of the many adventure activities on offer in Rotorua. This afternoon our trip takes us further off the beaten track into the remote area of Lake Aniwhenua.
As we drive into the Kaingaroa Forest we will meet up with a respected Maori elder who will guide the group to a sacred archaeological site to view some of NZ’s oldest Maori rock carvings. As we approach the small township we will visit the local Marae (a Maori meeting house), where we will receive a traditional welcome and spend time learning about the Maori’s cultural beliefs, song and dance while sharing some ‘kai’ (afternoon tea).
Tonight while staying in the tranquil oasis of Kohutapu Lodge, you will learn how to cook a traditional ‘Hangi’ (a feast cooked underground). Opt into one of the many activities on offer or simply enjoy a sunset drink at the Taniwha Bar overlooking the lake. You will be both touched and inspired as you learn about the beneficial community program to which travelers are contributing.
Summary of The Day: After breakfast we’ll depart to drop lunch packs off at a nearby school as part of an inspiring community project that brightens the lives of local school children (dependent on school timetable and holiday schedule).
Then it’s on to Taupo to visit mighty Huka Falls with the option to plunge from a plane on an adrenaline fueled skydive over NZ’s largest lake! Located in Whakahoro, one of the most remote parts of the North Island, Blue Duck Station is a sprawling 7,200 acre high country farm that is both a working station and an environmental conservation leader. Once you arrive, settle in to learn a little about daily life at Blue Duck, then relax and chill out around an evening fire.
Summary of The Day: Today is yours to fully explore this incredible location. Jump on a 4WD and travel up farm roads, over hilly peaks and through native bush to learn about the station’s interesting settlement history and their current conservation efforts. Don your cowboy hat and explore the farm by horseback or kayak on the river through bush clad valleys and lush green hills. Visit the Kaiwhakauka waterfall or assist with the farm’s pest control efforts and bring back tonight’s dinner.
Summary of The Day: We’ll be up at the crack of dawn for an early departure to make our way to the UNESCO Dual World Heritage Site, Tongariro National Park.
Today you get the chance to do what is rated as one of the world’s top ten one-day walks and a definite NZ ‘must do’: the epic Tongariro Alpine Crossing. Trek through dramatic natural scenery, past volcanic peaks, vast craters and stunning turquoise lakes on one of the most spectacular walks in New Zealand. The Crossing is open to walk year round (alpine gear and guide are required in winter), but subject to the weather conditions.
Summary of The Day: After breakfast we head around the mountains via the rural towns of Ohakune, Taihape and Bulls towards the bottom of the North Island.
Today is mostly an express day to get to Wellington, our capital city and home to New Zealand’s parliament and the iconic Beehive government building. Also known as the ‘coolest little capital in the world’ thanks to Lonely Planet, Wellington is a great place to check out the lively arts, craft beer and café culture scenes or do some shopping.
The afternoon is yours to explore the sights, and we recommend wandering down Oriental Parade or visiting Te Papa National Museum.
Summary of The Day: We'll depart in the early morning. This is an express day via Taupo heading back to New Zealand’s largest city Auckland. You can hop off anywhere along the way. With an early evening arrival, there’s still time to wander the streets of Auckland, visit the waterfront, do some souvenir shopping and hang out in some of Auckland’s lively cafes and bars. We hope you had a blast on this adventure!
* Price is per person.|
* Tour prices are based on NZD and are converted into USD. Prices will change day to day, due to the currency exchange rates. Tours booked and paid for will be charged at the current rate at which the tour price is shown. We will not refund any price differences, should prices drop for the tour. Tours will be subject to Cancellation Fees, should any changes be made for a reservation.
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