We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

North Island - 25 night itinerary help/guidance please!

Chelmsford, United...
Level Contributor
6 posts
3 reviews
Save Topic
North Island - 25 night itinerary help/guidance please!


My boyfriend and I are flying into Auckland, picking up a campervan and have 25 nights to get to Wellington. We have come up with a rough itinerary, but have no idea if it is realistic or not. Our intention was to come up with a rough route which we could add additonal stops to once we were there; however we have got carried away with the planning and have filled up the whole time!! So if anybody could suggest any changes then that'd be great. I'm not sure if we are cramming in too much?

Fly into Auckland mid afternoon (Hanua Falls/ harbour Bridge bungey/Sky walk)-spend 2 nights.

Leave Auckland in the morning – stop in Whangarei to see the waterfall.

Arrive in Paihia late afternoon? Spend 2 nights here to see the Bay of Islands.

Leave Paihia mid morning – Kaitaia. Spend 1 night.

Kaitaia - Waipoua Kauri Forest. Spend 1 night.

Leave the Forest late morning/lunchtime arrive in Thames early evening. Stay in Thames for 1 night.

Spend morning in Thames, drive to Coromandel and spend the afternoon. Drive to Whitianga early evening. Spend one night and following day to see hot water beach/cathedral cove.

Arrive in Hamilton early evening. Stay 2 nights so have 1 whole day to explore.

Leave AM, to go to Tauranga spend the day at Hobbiton. Drive to Rotorua late afternoon. 2 nights in Rotorua.

Drive to East cape, spend 2 nights here.

East Cape – Gisborne. Stay 1 night.

Gisborne - Mohaka River (ww rafting). Stay 1 night.

Mohaka River – Napier (wineries/ Te Mata Peak - Hawkes bay?) Stay 2 nights in Napier.

Napier – Taupo (Skydiving). Stay 2 nights. Leave late afternoon to make most of second day in Taupo.

Taupo - Tongariro Crossing (best one day hike in world). Arrive early eve. Stay 2 nights - 1 full day to trek.

Leave Tongariro AM - Waitomo Caves for most of the day. Stay 1 night.

Waitomo Caves - New Plymouth (nice driving route). Spend 1 night en route.

New Plymouth – Wellington. Spend 1 night in Wellington.

Thanks in advance!

Sam and Sophie.

Christchurch, New...
Destination Expert
for Zhuhai, Christchurch, South Island
Level Contributor
36,922 posts
368 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: North Island - 25 night itinerary help/guidance please!

This has to be one of the strangest routes I've seen for a while! There is an awful lot of zig-zagging and I think you'd need a GPS or a really good map!

When you leave Whitianga/Hot Water Beach, you are very close to Tauranga so it is silly to cross the Kaimai Ranges to Hamilton; Waitomo Caves are between Hamilton & Rotorua so a bit odd to head north to visit them AFTER Tongariro.

I would go Whitianga to Tauranga (Mount Maunganui would be a better choice to stay by the beach); then Rotorua (perhaps go via Te Puke & visit Kiwi360); From Rotorua you could make a day trip to Hobbiton or you could visit Hobbiton and Waitomo Caves between Tauranga & Rotorua.

From Rotorua to Gisborne/Napier to Tongariro is fine; then from Tongariro I'd head to Taumaranui then New Plymouth.

Good luck - sounds like a fun trip and it is good to see people spending so much time in the NI.

Level Contributor
9,269 posts
72 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: North Island - 25 night itinerary help/guidance please!

I'm not sure why you want to spend 2 nights in Hamilton. The Botanical Gardens are a nice hour or two diversion if you are driving through anyway, but not worth being a destination unto itself.

Chelmsford, United...
Level Contributor
6 posts
3 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: North Island - 25 night itinerary help/guidance please!

Thank you zhuhai2007, we weren't sure how else to see everything without zig-zagging!! But your suggestions seem to make much more sense so we will look into that :) thanks!

And dec2259, you're right, after looking into Hamilton a bit more it doesn't seem like we will spend so much time there, thank you!

4. Re: North Island - 25 night itinerary help/guidance please!

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 24 February 2014, 06:17
Our community is here to help!
Ask questions, get advice and more from travellers like you.
Join TripAdvisor