new zealand rotorua orakei korako valley istk
rotorua orakei korako valley

North Island Classic

from £1966 excluding flights

  • 13 nights
  • Year round
Home Destinations Australasia New Zealand North Island Classic


new zealand northland bay of islands beach istk

Experience sub-tropical Northland and the Bay of Islands

Maori Marae at Ohinemutu

Uncover Rotorua's deep-rooted Maori culture

new zealand pathway to beach coromandel istk

Walk picturesque trails on the forest-fringed Coromandel Peninsula

new zealand tongariro national park hikers tnz

Choose to hike through volcanic landscapes on the Tongariro Alpine Crossing

new zealand orakei korako thermal park rotorua istk

Visit the hidden thermal valley of Orakei Korako

new zealand hawkes bay vineyard istk

Explore the picturesque wineries of Hawke's Bay

Why this trip...

Aoraki Mt Cook National Park tailor made white

Tailor made

This itinerary can be tailor made to suit you and is intended to give you a guideline of what is possible in a given timeframe

Cabot Trail explore at leisure white

Explore at leisure

With the route, transport and accommodation sorted, each day offers the freedom to explore

early morning kayak istk activity based 01 white

Activities included

This itinerary features a range of included activities


Explore the wonderfully lush scenery of New Zealand’s North Island on this two-week self drive taking in the magnificent Bay of Islands in Northland and the geothermal and rugged landscapes of Rotorua and Tongariro National Park. Combined with the superb beaches and rainforest of the Coromandel, the richness of Maori culture and the wonderful wineries of Hawke’s Bay this itinerary showcases the very best highlights at a leisurely pace.

Focusing entirely on the North Island this 14-day itinerary incorporates some of the most dramatically scenic areas in the country as well as New Zealand’s soft side.

Starting in Auckland, drive to the sub-tropical Bay of Islands before exploring the wonderful lush landscape of the Coromandel, the geo-thermal heartland of Rotorua and the magnificent scenery of Tongariro National Park. En route to the capital city of Wellington enjoy time in picturesque Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand’s second largest wine region.

Speak to our team about combining with our 14-day South Island Explorer itinerary for a comprehensive New Zealand experience.


Fly into Auckland, New Zealand’s largest city, where you will be met on arrival and transferred to your hotel in the city for an overnight stay.

Collect your rental car and travel to the beautiful Bay of Islands. Stretching 350km north from Auckland, Northland is New Zealand’s only sub-tropical region and with its above average sunshine record and glorious beaches, it is popular with locals as well as visitors. In the afternoon you may like to take a boat trip out into the bay, or enjoy some free time to explore and relax.

Spend the day leisurely exploring the area. You might like to enjoy a full day sailing adventure with the opportunity to witness wild dolphins.

new zealand northland waewaetorea passage bay of islands adstk
new zealand northland bottlenose dolphins bay of islands tnz
new zealand northland doubtless bay pohutukawa tree istk

Leave Paihia at your leisure today and travel to Orewa, lying on the Hibiscus Coast, just north of the base of the Whangaparaoa Peninsula and 40 kms north of central Auckland.

Depart Orewa and drive to the beautiful Coromandel. Separated from Auckland by the broad Firth of Thames, this verdant peninsula comprises a forested backbone of mountains separating the precipitous west coast from the coves and white sand beaches of the east.

Spend the day experiencing the very best this wonderful region has to offer. Renowned worldwide for its natural beauty and lush flora, the Coromandel is blessed with hundreds of natural hideaways, making it an ideal place to slow down, relax and unwind.

new zealand coromandel aerial view hot water beach istk
new zealand coromandel pohutukawa istk
new zealand coromandel pauanui istk

Drive south, either following the coast road via Tauranga or inland via the interesting towns of Paeroa and Te Aroha, towards the active geo-thermal heartland of Rotorua. This evening make your way to the Mitai Maori Village to join an evening of traditional culture and food. Witness a haka, enjoy a hangi feast and watch out for the glow worms that sparkle in this natural bush setting.

Discover the Waimangu Volcanic Valley and Lake Rotomahana on a self guided walk and boat cruise. You can explore the world’s youngest geothermal valley at your own pace along the beautiful walking trails, woven through a natural geothermal ecosystem. Walks vary in length from 1.5kms – 4.5kms, covering a range of geothermal activity, hot springs, volcanic craters, nature and wildlife. The trail leads you down to the lake, where you can complete the experience with a relaxing 45 minute boat cruise around Lake Rotomahana, the final resting place of the Pink & White Terraces.

new zealand rotorua inferno crater waimangu isstk
new zealand rotorua whakarewarewa redwood forest walkway istk
new zealand central plateau geysers at lake rotomahana istk

Witness the superb and dramatic scenery of North Island’s heartland. En route to Tongariro National Park enjoy a visit to Orakei Korako geothermal area (also known as “The Hidden Valley”), situated on the Waikato River at Lake Ohakuri. Even with two thirds of the original geothermal area covered by an artificial lake, Orakei Korako is still New Zealand’s largest geyser field and one of the country’s must-see natural attractions. Make your way on to Ruapehu, a snow-capped volcano surrounded by desert like lava and ash.

You may like to spend the day hiking the world famous Tongariro Alpine Crossing, one of New Zealand’s 9 Great Walks and a one-day classic. Alternatively spend time more leisurely and explore the striking volcanic landscapes.

Hiking the Tongariro Crossing
new zealand mt ngauruhoe tongariro national park istk
new zealand tongariro national park emerald lakes hikers istk

Continue your journey down to Napier, New Zealand’s Art Deco capital set in the heart of Hawke’s Bay wine country. With a feast of Art Deco architecture, the city was rebuilt in the early 1930s following a massive earthquake. Subsequent fires destroyed most of its commercial heart. By the end of the decade, Napier was the newest city on the globe and nowhere else can you see such a variety of buildings in the styles of the 1930s – Stripped Classical, Spanish Mission and Art Deco – in such a concentrated area.

Enjoy a full day at leisure today, perhaps take a guided walking tour of this fascinating Art Deco city, visit the gannet colony at Cape Kidnappers on an overland safari or alternatively spend time at leisure exploring the wineries the region is renowned for.

new zealand pacific coast napier dusk istk
new zealand hawkes bay cape kidnappers gannet colony istk
new zealand hawkes bay view from te mata peak istk

Depart Napier and make your way to Wellington, New Zealand’s capital city offering an unforgettable urban experience in a stunning natural setting. Set between a sparkling harbour and rolling green hills, this compact city has great shopping, professional theatre, memorable arts, culture and heritage and great cafes and restaurants all close to untouched nature spots. Central Wellington itself is only 2 kilometres in diameter and you can walk from one side to the other in under 20 minutes.

Drop off your rental vehicle at the airport depot today and depart.

Accommodation Options

We have selected properties for this holiday in a mix of hotels and motels. However, with a wide choice of accommodation in New Zealand, we can change to suit your personal preference mixing different grades and styles.

  • blue pacific paihia bedroom
  • auckland heritage hotel deluxe suite hotel wing

Prices and Departures

Price from £1966 excluding flights

Airfares start from around £825 per person and are quoted separately to the holiday price.
When enquiring, our Travel Specialists will provide the best fare possible from your preferred airline / airport.
Note: Airfares tend to be cheaper the earlier you book.

What's Included

  • Accommodation in rooms with private bathroom
  • Car rental throughout
  • Private airport transfer on arrival
  • Mitai Maori Village experience
  • Waimangu Valley self guided walk and boat cruise
  • Orakei Korako geothermal valley
  • 24 hour emergency assistance from our team during your holiday
  • No surcharge guarantee
  • Full financial protection

This itinerary starts from around £1,966 per person, based on 2 sharing a room with private bathroom in standard hotels, and rental of a compact SUV vehicle.

Prices may vary depending on departure date and booking date, as well as any changes to the included components. The final cost of a tailored holiday will be based on the level of accommodation, size of vehicle, included activities, travel season, and how far in advance it is booked. We will confirm the exact price for your holiday in your individual quotation, based on your chosen travel dates and inclusions.

As Standard, Complete Piece of Mind

We’re listening. We always care what our fellow travellers think and love building strong customer relationships so we continuously focus on improving future experiences based on feedback. How incredible for the last three years we have received the Feefo Platinum Award.


The World's Great. Pass it On

To mark our 40th anniversary, we've launched our Education Bursary Fund to help disadvantaged school children experience the wonders of travel. A percentage of revenue from every holiday booked will go into the bursary fund to pay for at least 40 students to join one of our school trips abroad.