Auckland - Wellington

Fly total time: 8 days

Get to know some of the North Island’s most popular regions in 8 days, including the vibrant and multicultural cities of Auckland and Wellington, the unique Maori culture and geothermal wonders in Rotorua and the intriguing Hobbiton Movie Set Tours in the Waikato.

To ensure your clients are well rested after their flight, we recommend they stay a night or two in their arrival city before collecting a rental vehicle. Driving in a new country can be challenging and will be even worse if the driver is tired. The driver should always be well rested, take regular breaks during the journey and plan to drive for only 1-2 hours at a time.
 
New Zealand has unique road rules and driving conditions that your clients may not be used to. For a safe and enjoyable journey make sure your clients know where to find information on New Zealand’s road rules before they depart for their holiday.
 
Here are some suggestions:
  • Day 1 - Auckland

    Drive Fly
    Arrive Auckland and enjoy a leisurely day exploring the CBD or head out on the water and explore one of the islands on the Waitemata Harbour.

    Recommended activities:

    • Hit the shops in the CBD including the Britomart Precinct and find quality local goods as well the best international brands
    • Visit Skytower for stunning views.  For an adrenaline rush book Skyjump or Skywalk
    • Learn more about New Zealand’s history and people at the Auckland Museum
    • Experience New Zealand’s marine life up close at Kelly Tarlton’s Sea Life Aquarium in nearby Mission Bay
    • For an unforgettable experience walk the Auckland Harbour Bridge or do a Bungy
    • Head out on the sparkling waters of the Waitemata Harbour from the Viaduct area in the heart of downtown Auckland.  Experience it under sail on the Sail NZ Americas Cup experience or Pride of Auckland or go by jetboat
    • Take a short ferry ride across the harbour to the charming seaside village of Devonport.  Browse the specialty shops and cafes or walk up Mt Victoria for great harbour views
    •  Head further afield with a half day boat trip to fascinating volcanic Rangitoto Island or have a full day trip to the laid back vineyards and beaches of Waiheke Island or West Auckland 
  • Day 2 - Waikato, ending in Rotorua

    Drive Fly 1 hour 20 minutes 92 KMS 57 MI
    Head underground for a tour of the famous Waitomo Glow-worm Caves. Adventurous clients can even abseil or blackwater raft through some of the larger caves. Drop in for a visit to the famous Hobbiton Movie Set Tours at Matamata just 1 hour 15 minutes from Waitomo.  
     
    Clients travelling by car might like to visit Hamilton before heading to Rotorua for the night.

    Recommended activities:

    • See the spectacular cave formations and glow worms at Waitomo Glow-worm Caves
    • Check out other cave experiences in the area including Ruakuri Cave
    • Experience black water caving or take a dry caving adventure including abseiling, spider walking, high rope work and flying foxes
    • Take a guided tour through Hobbiton Movie Set Tours and have a drink at The Green Dragon Inn
    • Visit Hamilton Gardens with its unique New Zealand traditional Maori vegetable garden as well as other more international themed gardens
    • Get a taste of the organic Zealong oolong tea plantation near Hamilton
    • Experience New Zealand’s unique flora and fauna at the Maungatautahi ecological reserve
  • Day 3 and 4 - Rotorua

    Drive Fly
    Take a couple of days to experience Rotorua’s geothermal wonders as well as its sparkling lakes and lush native forests. It’s also the ideal place to discover the rich and fascinating culture of local Māori, New Zealand's indigenous people.  
     
    For adventure lovers try mountain biking on one of numberous local trails, go rafting or try out a Kiwi invention, the Zorb. For a more relaxed time enjoy the local spa culture.

    Recommended activities:

  • Day 5 - Rotorua - Taupo

    Drive Fly 1 hour 81 KMS 50 MI

    Today your clients will drive from Rotorua to Taupo. Beautiful Lake Taupo is New Zealand’s largest lake and a must see for clients who love water sports and fishing.  Favourite tourist spots include the majestic Huka Falls, geothermal areas and the lake itself.

    Recommended activities:

    • Visit spectacular Huka Falls where 222, 000 litres of water a second pour through a narrow rock chasm
    • View the unusual geothermal features of the Wairakei Tourist Park including the Craters of the Moon
    • Relax in the warm natural springs at deBretts Hot Springs or Wairakei Terraces
    • Go trout fishing with a local guide
    • Take a lake cruise to see cliffside Māori rock carvings
    • Jetboat the Waikato River for an up close view of the Huka Falls or the geothermal wonders at  Orakei Korako Thermal Reserve
    • Lunch at the Huka Prawn Park for a taste of the fresh local produce
    • Get an adrenalin rush with a Tandem skydive from Taupo Airport
    • River raft the Tongariro River
    • Experience two of the best golf courses in New Zealand with a round at Wairakei International or The Kinloch Club
    • Hire a mountain bike and check out the local scenery
    • Experience the thrill of V8 hotlaps at the Taupo Raceway.
  • Day 6 and 7 - Taupo - Wellington

    Drive Fly 4 hours 24 minutes 371 KMS 230 MI

    Your clients can spend some time in  New Zealand’s capital city of Wellington.  This compact capital is famous for its café culture, funky food and fashion, galleries and museums including the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.

    Recommended activities:

    Make the most of two days in the Capital with a range of relaxing or invigorating activities:
    • Discover New Zealand’s stories at the National Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.
    • Enjoy 360 degree views from the top of Mt Victoria
    • Ride the historic Wellington Cable Car for city views and walk back through the beautiful inner city Botanic Gardens
    • Experience a special interest tour by local specialists including Wellington’s coffee roasters and gourmet foods, mountain biking with expert guides or take a helicopter ride for spectacular views of harbour and city
    • Taste your way around the city by visiting the diverse cafes and bars in this compact city
    • Travel back in time and experience New Zealand’s unique flora and fauna at the Zealandia Sanctuary, a 10 minute drive from downtown
    • Check out movie making magic with a behind the scenes tour of the Weta Cave in Miramar or  a Lord of the Rings location tour
    • Walk along the Wellington waterfront with its New Zealand poets walk to scenic Oriental Bay.
    • Check out the wildlife at Wellington Zoo and get up close to everything from meerkats to a giraffe. Pre booking Encounters a must
    • Shop the gift shops and boutiques in Cuba Street, Wellington’s hip neighbourhood

    Spend another day enjoying what Wellington has to offer, or explore further afield on a day trip. 

    • Drive or take the train over the Rimutaka Hill to the charming vineyard town of Martinborough in the Wairarapa region.  It’s foodie heaven and so close to Wellington
    • Drive 1 hour up the Kapiti Coast and catch a boat to Kapiti Island, a special nature reserve accessible from Paraparaumu Beach
  • Day 8 - Auckland or day trip on the Northern Explorer Train to Auckland

    Drive Fly 1 hour (by plane) 649 KMS 403 MI

    Option 1: Fly from Wellington to Auckland in just an hour and leave your bags at the airport so you can enjoy more time in Auckland before leaving New Zealand.  Head into the city or relax over wine and food at The Villa Maria winery just 5 minutes by taxi from the Auckland Airport. 

    Option 2: Travel at leisure by train and experience the North Island’s extraordinary range of scenery including farmland, native forest, volcanic Tongariro National Park and quaint country towns and rocky coasts.  Arrive in Auckland CBD at around 7pm and take a transfer to Auckland Airport (allow an hour).
     
    Option 3: Fly out of Wellington to connect with your international flight, so you can spend more time in the Capital before you check in.

    Recommended activities:

    • See Day 1, Day 6 and Day 7 activities.
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