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5 day north island itinerary plz!!

Sydney, Australia
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5 day north island itinerary plz!!

Hi, planning a trip to the beautiful NZ with my husband at the end of June. Need some advice on the itinerary. Please help!

I live in Sydney. This is my first visit to NZ, so will try to make the most out of it..:-)

We were thinking about driving to Taupo and spend 2 nights there, would that be a good idea? what we should not miss on our way to Taupo? We are very much interested to go rafting (first time). not sure if that would be a very good idea during shivering winter! how cold does it get? is there any place around Auckland where we can see snowfall?

too many questions i know!!

Thanks in advance.

very much appreciate any of your help

Kerikeri, New...
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1. Re: 5 day north island itinerary plz!!

Hi there, I'm sure someone else can guide you on rafting and Taupo, but seeing you haven't much time, you should know that it probably at least 4hours+ drive from Auckland to Taupo. You can however get direct flights to Taupo from Auckland. I doubt very much you'll see snow near Auckland :) however Taupo is close to NZ largest ski fields - on Mt Ruapehu. I'm surprised at the number of aussies who don't know there is skiing on the north island. And its a popular spot for the locals because of its proximity to Auckland and Wellington. Whilst your in the area, a visit to Napier would be nice, beautiful art deco city. And from there you could end up for a day in Wellington. Don't miss Te Papa if you like museums. I've been to lots around the world and this one is a bit of a fave for me.

I'm sure others will have suggestions too. Enjoy.

Wellington, New...
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2. Re: 5 day north island itinerary plz!!

Hi, are you flying into and then departing from Auckland? If so I'd drive from Auckland to Waitomo Caves then to Rotorua for the night. Spend the next day in Rotorua and drive through Taupo, where in June you will certainly see some snow on Mt Ruapehu. Depending on your interests there are many attractions in and around Taupo to pass a day and night by the lake. You may like to spend a night in Ohakune, which is the gateway the Mt Ruapehu in Tongariro National Park. Rocky_and_Biglegs makes a good point with Te Papa, this is a must-see while in NZ if you get a chance to visit Wellington, but it's a long way to Auckland if you plan on driving back in a hurry!

All the best.

Sydney, Australia
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3. Re: 5 day north island itinerary plz!!

Thanks guys. We would actually love to drive around and see as much as we can. We love valleys, mountains, rivers, beaches.. actually we love nature.

and we love adventure as well. We might go skiing as we have already started to introduce ourselves to ice skating! so that will be good fun.

not sure about rafting thou!

My husband needs to be at Auckland for 3 nights for work purposes. So, we might visit around Auckland at that time. i've heard a lot about Bay of Island. what are the activities there? what else is around a 100k radius of Auckland??

Please help..:)

We'll spend the last 2 nights in Taupo.

Thanks again guys. Mt Rupehu sounds groovy. Not sure if we'll have time to visit Te papa, but it sounded great!

getting even more excited! :-)

Christchurch, New...
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for Zhuhai, Christchurch, South Island
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4. Re: 5 day north island itinerary plz!!

So you actually only have 3D/2N to travel around? None of the places mentioned are within 100 Km of AKL - it is a similar size to Sydney so it will take 50-60 Km driving N or S to get out of the city. Waiheke Island or Rangitoto Is are good places for day trips by ferry.

Given 3 days I'd drive one way through Hamilton (perhaps drop by the Gardens - worth a look even in winter); then Waitomo Caves and on to Taupo. Day 2 drive to Mt Ruapehu if the weather is good, or just as far as Turangi , or stay in the hot pools if the weather if bad. Day 3 to Rotorua via Wai-o-tapu thermal park - aim to get there for 10:15 when the geyser "goes off"!! Afternoon from Rotorua to Auckland (3 hr).

Sydney, Australia
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5. Re: 5 day north island itinerary plz!!

Hi thank you for all the helpful infos. We actually have 6nights & we'll need to be in Auckland for the 1st 3 nights. We can go for half day trips in those 3 days as my husband will be busy working in those 3 mornings! Not sure what can we accomodate in 3-half days! Any nice & cheap shopping places around auckland?

The rest of the nights(last 3 nights), we'd probably stay in Taupo and explore that zone!

All of the places your recommended sounding excellent! I wish we had few more days!:-(

Auckland
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6. Re: 5 day north island itinerary plz!!

Hi there i would also like to say a trip to the Thames and Coromandel Peninsula is well worth your while it would only be a 1 and a half hour drive max 2 hours to get to and the views are beautiful There is Hot water beach and a lovely walk to catherdal cove while doing the walk there are paths that venture off to other bays one of my faves is Stingray Bay once your done there drive on through to Tauranga where you will see some lovely scenery and you could stay the night then move on to Rotorua a must see in New Zealand where you can experience thermal pools and New Zealand Maori culture then from here to Taupo staying two nights (a tip id give to you is to hire a fairly small car as some of the roads through the best scenic areas can be narrow as my partner and i found out luckily we had a small Honda ) You want regret it i did this trip last year in May not the best season but we had so so so much fun all the same .

Waitomo caves can be done in a half day trip

you can also venture to the north on a half day up to a place called Waipu pack yourself a pick-nick and go up to a beach up there

if you dont want to do that you can go to the North Shore which is max 30 min drive from the city and go to one of the bays areas Long Bay or Browns Bay beach and have fish n chips on the beach for a day at the beach and a bit of shopping id recommend Browns Bay as it has a strip of shops just in front of the beach some of which are quite cheap though i personally i prefer Long Bay beach itself .

Cheap Shopping. Well it depends what you want for clothing go to a place called Dressmart in Onehunga in Auckland For food id recommend South Auckland or better yet a flee market which are generally held on Sundays and then there are all the "$2" shops in New Zealand which at the risk of sounding racist are normally Asian owned stores that sell items fairly cheap but the quality is not always the best and also stores like the Warehouse and Farmers have great sales.

I hope i was of some help

Kass

Sydney, Australia
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7. Re: 5 day north island itinerary plz!!

Hi kass, thanks a lot. Im wondering whats so special about Rotrua? What are thermal pools?

We've visited a number of caves in Sydney and Tasmania, so not sure if waitomo caves would have anything exceptional to offer?? What do you think guys?? Is there anyone who has visited both NSW's Genolan caves n Waitomo caves? It's going to be a short trip. So, i've to do lot more homeworks to not miss out on something special! What do you say?

Any beautiful Valleys around Auckland or Taupo? When I think about NZ, 1st things come into my mind are beautiful valleys and mountains..:-)

Kerikeri, New...
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8. Re: 5 day north island itinerary plz!!

Waitomo is famous for its glowworms. You float out into the caves on a boat, and its like gazing into a star-lit sky. Very different.

Visiting Roturua is a bit like visiting the set of a sci-fi movie :) Rocks everywhere, steam and water errupts all over the place, through lush forests and streams. The Maori cultural experience there, whilst a little commerical is also top class. Highly recommended is a natural thermal bath/spa - plenty to choose from.

Auckland
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9. Re: 5 day north island itinerary plz!!

Hi, i have read the replies to your post and am surprised no-one has suggested that you spend a day checking out the beautiful natural enviornment on the doorstep in Auckland - the Waitakere Ranges and west coast beaches. Head west and take a drive along the Scenic Drive - so named for a reason, which will allow you many opportunities to take short bush walks off the main road, and will aslo lead you to the wild and beautiful west coast beaches of Phia and Bethells Beach - renowned black-sand surf coast which in winter will be spectacular. There is the Arataki Visitors Centre at the top of the scenic dirve, and you could also check out Titirangi which is a great little suburrb nestled into the beginng of the scenic drive with upmarket cafes, art galleries and shops, and leads to many other beaches, bush walks and views in the area. You could easily spend at least one day in this area alone, and you will not have driven more than 50 k from Auckland CBD. Go West, i say!

Auckland
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10. Re: 5 day north island itinerary plz!!

Me again, i can't resist adding some other suggestons for 1/2 day trips:

Awhitu (say afitu) peninsula for quiet country driving and unspoilt empty beaches, and the town of Pukekohe - great shoppng and cafes, both to the south of Auckland and can be included in one trip

Drive south to the quiet country town of Clevedon - great chocolate shop, on to Kawakawa Bay for an icecream then south following the Miranda seabird coast and then back up state highway one to Auckland - this is a gorgeous drive.

North to Whanagaporoa peninsula - very populated but an interesting change of scene and includes some lovely stop-over points along the way.

Devonport on the ferry - reminds me of Williamstown in Melbourne

Mission Bay - waterfront in Auckland - you could spend a good half day in this area alone.

Have fun!