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Enchanting Northland


Explore sub-tropical islands and world-famous coastlines on this five-day journey into Northland. Calling all nature lovers, this corner of New Zealand’s North Island is like another world. Northland is known for its dense forests and warm weather, creating a paradise made up of 144 islands – the Bay of Islands. With a small group, you’ll go swimming in the warm seas, take a full-day cruise through the scenic Poor Knights Islands, go scuba diving, snorkelling and kayaking and pay a visit to the Waitangi Treaty Grounds. Gain insight into one of the most important moments in New Zealand’s history and learn about Māori culture. With free time for an adrenaline-filled adventure in Paihia (or some downtime kicking back on one of the gorgeous beaches), this journey will be nothing short of enchanting.

5 days, from

$1,480

per person

GROUP SIZE

16 people max

ACTIVITY LEVEL

 
2
Trip code: PHKR
Style: Comfort
Theme: Explorer

Details

Countries Visited:  New Zealand
Accommodation: Hotel (4 nights)
Transportation: Private Vehicle
Included Meals:

  • 4 breakfasts
  • 1 lunches
  • 1 dinners

Group size: Minimum 6, Max 16

  • Cruise through the scenic Poor Knights Islands on a full-day adventure on the water to see some of the north island’s natural beauty. This area is also a Marine Reserve and has volcanic origins over 11 million years old, creating some pretty epic biodiversity.

  • Visit the Waitangi Treaty Grounds to learn about an important piece of New Zealand’s fascinating history, then see the world’s biggest carved waka (ceremonial war canoe)!

  • Soak in the coastal beauty of Tutukaka – home to one of the world’s most gorgeous coastlines (as voted by National Geographic Traveller).

  • Explore Paihia at your own pace with a full free day to scuba dive, sail, swim or relax on one of the many coastal beaches within the Bay of Islands. With a handy local leader by your side, you won’t miss any opportunity!

  • Start and end your trip in modern Auckland – New Zealand's largest city. A big mix of cultures here has resulted in some pretty excellent cuisine, so why not hit up a few of the famous restaurants in your downtime?

Itinerary

Show Full Itinerary

Day 1: Auckland

Welcome to New Zealand! Your adventure begins in Tamaki Makaurau (Auckland) with a welcome meeting tonight at 6 pm. If you arrive early, why not check out the Auckland Sky Tower – the tallest building in New Zealand. If the mood strikes, you can also jump off the Sky Tower (with a harness, of course). Maybe visit the Auckland War Memorial Museum or walk around the CBD at your own pace and pick one of the excellent spots for lunch. Tonight, you’ll head out for a welcome dinner with your group to get to know each other.

Day 2: Auckland / Tutukaka

Start your day with a hearty breakfast at a local café for a dose of warm Kiwi hospitality. Then, take a scenic drive to Tutukaka, stopping at Whangarei Falls along the way. This 26 m-high waterfall is a great spot for a photo! Continue along the coastline to Matapouri Beach. With the soft sand under your feet. You can take some time to enjoy the soothing sounds of the ocean. This is a perfect spot to relax, unwind and appreciate the surroundings. Arrive in Tutukaka tonight – a coastal city known for its scenic views, world-famous beaches and coastline (rated one of the top three coastlines in the world by National Geographic Traveller!).

Day 3: Tutukaka / Paihia

After breakfast this morning, you’ll set sail on a full-day cruise to the Poor Knights Islands. As a total Marine Reserve, the islands boast 11-million-year-old volcanic origins, featuring some pretty memorable drop-offs, walls, caves, arches and tunnels both above and below the water. The rich biodiversity includes plant, animal and fish life unique to the area, so if you’re a wildlife buff this might be the highlight of your trip! Your day will be filled with sightseeing, kayaking, exploring caves, snorkelling, swimming, spotting sea mammals and learning the history of the islands. The highlight of the day is a visit to the world's largest sea cave – Rikoriko Cave, only accessible by boat. Finish your day with a scenic drive to Paihia, where you’ll spend the night.

Day 4: Paihia

Today is a free day in Paihia – this coastal town is known as the gateway to the popular dive sites and sandy beaches of the bay. With more than 140 sub-tropical islands dotted around the coastline, there’s plenty to see and do here! Maybe hit the water and explore the many coves and beaches or take a cruise through the natural rock archway. Explore the ocean floor on a scuba mission or maybe set sail in search of local dolphins. If you’re looking for a hit of adrenaline, why not consider going skydiving? Your leader will have the inside scoop on optional activities and the best places to refuel for lunch and dinner.

Day 5: Paihia / Auckland

Today, you’ll discover the Bay of Islands’ important role in New Zealand’s history with a trip to the Waitangi Treaty Grounds. Get an insight into Māori culture and see the 35 m carved waka (a ceremonial war canoe) – the biggest in the world! After lunch, say goodbye to the bay and start the journey back to Auckland via Northland’s east coast. Make sure to grab a window seat if you can, as the scenic beaches and coastal walks along the way pass you by. Arrive back in Auckland in the late afternoon, where your trip comes to an end. If you’d like to extend your stay in New Zealand’s north island, just speak to your booking agent ahead of time.