New Zealand North Island Walking Tour 2019
A unique small-group tour for leisure walkers, combining picturesque less visited areas, along with some popular tourist attractions. Walking over extinct volcanoes, along secluded beaches, under glow worms and stalactites, through bush-clad sanctuaries and across farmland. Transportation by mini-coach, jetboats, railcarts and by foot.
Departs: Sunday 23 March 2019
- Walk on extinct volcanoes with spectacular views.
- Stroll along stretches of secluded East Coast beaches and beside wild West oceans
- Venture in to stunning gorges, though native forests, along rivers, and across farmland.
- See glow worms, stalagmites, stalactites, native NZ birds, boiling mud and geysers.
- Relax under a natural hot spring waterfall.
- Enjoy exhilarating jetboat rides to hidden places.
- Self-drive a quirky railcart through the forgotten world.
- Visit a vineyard, brewery, marae, hobbits shire and museums.
- fun 'wild-team' to travel with!
**This itinerary has a 'multi-activity' focus and is more demanding than our other walk-only tours.
The itinerary will appeal to those who have a hankering to see the
country in a leisurely paced ramble, spending 16 days exploring
a broad range of nooks and crannies off the main roads of the North.
Marie Coles is a born & bred Kiwi who grew up in a small country village in the South Island of New Zealand some 50-odd years ago and now resides in the North Island. Having worked in the travel industry for 25 years, Marie has travelled extensively throughout the world but lists New Zealand as her favourite destination. With her local knowledge and passion for walking and exploring, Marie has carefully crafted this itinerary to include some iconic walks as well as adventuring in to less-visited areas.
Accommodation & Meals
Accommodation is a mix of good quality hotels and motels in excellent locations. Breakfast included daily – fresh fruit, muesli, toast & spreads, free-range eggs. Occasional meals included, eg. vineyard lunch, evening BBQ.
North Island of NZDay 1
: Auckland coast to coast
Bethells Beach walk with scenic backdrop. Soljans Winery lunch, a wine tour and tasting.
Day 2 : Auckland - Miranda
Rangitoto Island climb to the top for spectacular views of the Hauraki Gulf and Auckland. Maungakiekie to explore the extinct volcano. Miranda Springs for a soak in the natural hot springs.
Day 3 : Miranda – Waihi Beach
Paeroa famous for L&P. Karangahake Gorge morning walk through tunnels, over bridges, past mining remains, and the “windows”. Martha open pit mine and museum. Homunga track via Orokawa Bay walk to Waihi Beach to tune of a cicadas summer anthem, chortling tuis and the ocean crashing on to the coast.
Day 4 : Waihi Beach – Mt Maunganui – Cambridge
Mt Maunganui Base or Summit Track morning walk for awesome views of the area. Maungakawa bush walk.
Day 5 : Cambridge – Hamilton Gardens
Cambridge walk along river trails, well-manicured streets through the centre of town and out to the Velodrome. Hamilton Gardens afternoon walk through the wonderful collection and architecture of the world renowned Gardens.
Day 6 : Cambridge – Orakei Korako – Tirau – Cambridge
Jet boat ride on the Waikato River to visit a hot spring waterfall followed by a visit to the active geothermal area of Orakei Korako. Te Waihou afternoon walk to the internationally acclaimed Blue Spring. A visit to the quirky town of Tirau.
Day 7 : Cambridge – Arapuni – Hobbiton – Cambridge
Maungatautari Ecological Sanctuary morning guided walk through the forest. Waikato River Trail walk through wetlands, across farms and along the river. Hobbiton stroll through the lush pastures of “The Shire” on a guided movie-set tour.
Day 8 : Cambridge – Otorohanga – Waitomo – Taumaranui
Otorohanga Kiwi House to see Kiwi on display in a night time setting. Waitomo walk traversing a classic limestone landscape. Waitomo Glowworm Caves for a magical boat ride beneath the glow which will surely enlighten you! Mangapohue Natural Bridge & Marakopa Falls - one of NZ’s most beautiful waterfalls.
Day 9 : Taumaranui – Tokorima – Whangamomona – New Plymouth
Self-drive Rail Carts to explore a forgotten world. Travel the Forgotten World Highway to the “Republic of Whangamomona”.
Day 10 : New Plymouth
Walk the fabulous Coastal Walkway and Lake Matamahoe famous for its reflection of Mt Taranaki. Len Lye contemporary art museum and Puke Ariki with its heritage and art collections.
Day 11 : New Plymouth – Opunake – Wanganui
Opunake’s stunning walkway. Travel along the Surf Highway to Wanganui.
Day 12 : Wanganui – Jerusalem – Bridge to Nowhere – Wanganui
Jerusalem, the resting place of well-known poet James K Baxter. Jetboat up the Wanganui River and bush walk to the historic "Bridge to Nowhere" - gateway to the "Valley of Abandoned Dreams".
Day 13 : Wanganui – Otaki – Waikanae – Raumati
Outlet shopping town of Otaki . Beach walk past Kapiti island. Visit Southward Car Museum – the most comprehensive privately owned collection of veteran and vintage cars in the southern hemisphere.
Day 14 : Raumati - Kapiti Coast - Raumati
Paekakariki Escarpment walk - spectacular views of the ocean, Kapiti and the South Island. Walk along the beautiful sand dune tracks of Queen Elizabeth Regional Park and sunset drinks on the beach.
Day 15 : Raumati – Wellington
Full day on the Skywalk across the ridge tops of Wellington.
Day 16 : tour ends in Wellington