Northern Highlights
Independent tour (bus & coach) from Auckland to Wellington
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New Zealand tour itinerary name and information
Thrifty Tours

Northern Highlights

Immerse yourself in the rich culture of New Zealand's Maori heritage, including a traditional hangi and concert.

Tour summary and feature

Independent tour (bus & coach)

This suggested tour costs from NZD$985 per person (twin share, low season)

Starts in Auckland, finishes in Wellington

3 days/2 nights

Motels

 Customisable? YES

 Viewed 14 times in the last 7 days

Tour at a glance

At a glance - Northern Highlights

Day 1: Travel to Waitomo Caves and then onto Rotorua, visit Tamaki Maori Village this evening. Accommodation: Bella Vista Rotorua

Day 2: Visit Te Puia thermal area, Rainbow Springs and the Agrodome. Free time this afternoon. Accommodation: Bella Vista Rotorua

Day 3: Travel south today to Wellington via Lake Taupo.

Tour full itinerary

Detailed itinerary: 3 day tour starting in Auckland

Day 1 - Travel to Waitomo Caves and then onto Rotorua, visit Tamaki Maori Village this evening

Northern Highlights - Day 1
Auckland to Rotorua including Waitomo Caves with GreatSights

Enjoy a tour from Auckland to Rotorua including a guided tour of the fascinating Waitomo Glowworm Caves.  Leaving Auckland in the morning you travel through the lush farmland of the Waikato and King Country regions. Your experienced local driver guide will provide a commentary as you travel to Waitomo and point out sites of interest including Rangiriri, the location of a historic Māori land wars battle between forces loyal to the Māori King and the Colonial Government in 1863.
On arrival in the small town of Waitomo enjoy a guided tour through the world famous Waitomo Glowworm Caves with their amazing stalactites, stalagmites and other limestone formations. Finish the tour with a silent boat ride through the Glowworm Grotto - a subterranean cavern lit up by the lights of thousands of tiny glowworms.
Continue your tour this afternoon by driving to Rotorua, passing through the beautiful Fitzgerald Glade where the roadside trees arch overhead to form a tunnel of natural greenery.

Tamaki Maori Village Cultural Tour and Hangi Dinner

Journey back in time to a Pre-European lifestyle experience of customs and traditions. Enjoy the night's festivities with the people of Tamaki Maori Village as you are treated to a banquet of succulent foods cooked the traditional Maori way. Rediscover the Maori village as it comes alive to the sound and activities of tribal songs, dances, myths and legends and browse throughout the largest after hour's tribal marketplace in Rotorua. Includes dinner.

Your accommodation: Bella Vista Rotorua

Bella Vista Rotorua offers motel accommodation just 10 minutes walk from the city centre and close to the lake front. Modern well-equipped units provide a comfortable stay.

Day 2 - Visit Te Puia thermal area, Rainbow Springs and the Agrodome. Free time this afternoon

Northern Highlights - Day 2
Rotorua Sights: Te Puia, Rainbow Springs and Agrodome with GreatSights

Discover three of Rotorua's best visitor attractions on this morning Rotorua sightseeing tour. Gain an insight into New Zealand's Māori culture at Te Puia.  You'll see Te Puia's woodcarving and weaving schools and see how these ancient Māori art forms are being passed on to a new generation of master artists. Experience Rotorua's famous geothermal activity with a tour of the neighbouring Whakarewarewa Thermal Valley. Then onto the Agrodome, a working organic farm where you can find out all about farming life in New Zealand, watch a sheep shearing display and see sheep dog trials where the hard-working farm dogs show off their amazing skills. New Zealand wildlife and natural scenery is on display at Rainbow Springs Nature Park, where you can get up close to all kinds of native flora and fauna including the famous kiwi, a flightless native bird.

Your accommodation: Bella Vista Rotorua

Bella Vista Rotorua offers motel accommodation just 10 minutes walk from the city centre and close to the lake front. Modern well-equipped units provide a comfortable stay.

Day 3 - Travel south today to Wellington via Lake Taupo

Northern Highlights - Day 3
Rotorua Accommodation to Rotorua Intercity Depot

You will be collected from your accommodation and transferred to Intercity Depot.
Please note that this is a shared transfer, there may be 2-3 extra stops along the way.

Rotorua to Wellington by InterCity Coach

Your coach journey from Rotorua to Wellington takes you via the township of Taupō and New Zealand's largest lake. The lake itself is actually a gigantic volcanic caldera formed during one of the worlds largest ever eruptions. Skirting Tongariro National Park, one of New Zealand's three world heritage sites and clouds permitting you can see the 2,500 metre peak of the still volcanically active Mt. Ruapehu. You might recognise the symmetrical shape of Mt. Ngauruhoe as this was used as the scenery of Mt. Doom in the Lord of the Rings Trilogy. Heading south you pass through the rural towns of Taihape, Mangaweka and Bulls before arriving on the Kapiti Coast, with its coastal seaside towns of Paraparaumu, Paekakariki and Plimmerton. The Kapiti Coast leads into Wellington, New Zealand's capital. Wellington sits on a wonderful deep natural harbour and is surrounded by bush clad hills. The city centre itself is quite compact (only around 1 square kilometre), so exploring on foot is relatively easy. From your city centre accommodation you can easily stroll the cafes and restaurants around Courtenay Place and explore New Zealand's national museum, Te Papa, which is also close by.

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Remember - we can create this itinerary with any style of accommodation or customise to suit your interests and timeframe. Just contact us here.

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Nov 29, 2020
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