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10 day itinerary North Island

Brussels, Belgium
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10 day itinerary North Island

Hi,

In a month we are making a trip to New Zealand. We are landing in Auckland and taking off in Christchurch. We will travel around by camper and our ferry is already booked so we have 10 days on the North Island and 20 days on the South Island. This is what we came up with:

day 1: Arrival in Auckland - stay the night in the city

day 2: Camper pick-up in the afternoon - drive to Thames.

day 3: Thames -> Tongariro National Park through Matamata and Otorhango (maybe a stop at Waitomo caves)

day 4: Tongariro crossing

day 5: Tongariro -> Taupo -> Rotorua

day 6: Rotorua

day 7: Rotorua - East Cape

day 8: East-Cape to Gisborne

day 9: Gisborne - Napier

day 10: Napier - Wellington

day 11: Wellington

day 12: Ferry to South Island

A thing we still having doubts about is to visit East Cape. As alternative we could visit the Coromandel after Thames and skip the East Cape.

Please don't hold back with remarks and suggestions.

Thanks for your help!

Rarotonga, Cook...
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for Rarotonga, Waiheke Island, Southern Cook Islands, Auckland
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1. Re: 10 day itinerary North Island

Day 3 looks to be a long day. In place of Thames overnight, how about Raglan on the west coast on Day 2., and closer to Waitomo Caves too?

The East Cape is an awesome, non-touristy, coastal region. If you are keen to explore Coromandel peninsula in place of the East Coast, this will involve a little more back-tracking before you reach Tongariro NP. Suggest you go with Raglan, Marokopa Falls and Waitomo instead of the Coromandel area to take in East Coast and Gisborne.

Wellington, NZ
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for Wellington
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2. Re: 10 day itinerary North Island

I also recommend the East Cape. It is a stunning part of NZ, and it's well off the beaten track. Anaura Bay is an absolute gem, and has a couple of campsites. It would be a long drive to get there from Rotorua (assuming you go via the Cape), so if you can, steal a day from the South Island.

New Zealand
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3. Re: 10 day itinerary North Island

day 7 & 8 : Be aware that the roads are winding and single lane around the East Cape. Ensure you fill up petrol tank and have snack food/water. Check out ::: newzealand.com/nuova-zelanda/feature/eastlan…

day 9: Gisborne - Napier

Single lane roads, some hills, trucks etc. Suggest stop at Morere Hot Pools on route Gisborne to Wairoa (you will need your swimmers!). Stop in Wairoa at Oslers Bakery (on Marine Parade) for bakery food the way it used to be made! Drive from Wairoa to Napier is relatively easy but again single lane and trucks.

day 10: Napier - Wellington : 4.5hrs

If time allows, take route to Wellington through The Wairarapa - much more scenic and countrified!

Brussels, Belgium
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4. Re: 10 day itinerary North Island

Thank you all for your advice!

We are going in the busiest season (dec-jan). Do we have to book the campsites in advance? I do like a bit of flexibility, but on the other hand if we struggle every day with finding a campsite isn't preferable also.

Rarotonga, Cook...
Destination Expert
for Rarotonga, Waiheke Island, Southern Cook Islands, Auckland
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13,115 posts
111 reviews
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5. Re: 10 day itinerary North Island

Hi again,

Leading up to Christmas, you should b fine to secure a campsite. Immediately before Christmas until the end of January when many people take annual leave, and school holidays are in full swing, it would pay to prebook. Away from premium beaches and popular centres around NZ you should be in a better position.

NZ has a range of camping sites from better facilities at holiday parks/Top 10 included, to the basic sites and services provided by DOC (Dept Conservation).

Enjoy your visit.

6. Re: 10 day itinerary North Island

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