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North of Auckland

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Melbourne, Australia
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North of Auckland

We have a couple of days free at the end of the month and we're heading to Auckland. We have thought about exploring the peninsular north of Auckland, perhaps driving up to Cape Reigna. Is this area worth spending time on? What should we see? How long will it take to drive up to the Cape and any recommendations about where to stay?

Auckland, New...
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1. Re: North of Auckland

H

From Auckland to Cape Reinga is a good 6 hour drive, longer with stops and would in effect take a whole day.

There is plenty to see and do in the greater Auckland region and you may wish to consider the following.

A visit to the Waitakere Ranges - an area of great natural beauty under and hour from the city and airport where you will find regenerating rain forest, black sand beaches, notably Karekare and Piha, stunning coastal and bush views, waterfalls, bush walks and not too many people. Just to the north west of the city is the Kumeu area where you will find many of Auckland's very good wineries and also Muriwai with its gannet colony is well worth a visit - on clear sunny day like today it takes some beating.

If you wanted to go further afield then have a look at the Matakana area and places on the east coast such as Leigh and Pakiri.

If you really want to venture further north then I would suggest heading up to the Hokianga Harbour via the Kauri Museum at Matakohe and the Waipoua forest. From Auckland to Omapere on the Hokianga is a good days drive but doable. In Omapere there are plenty of B & Bs - we can recommend McKenzies - and also a Copthorne - both places close by the waterfront. From the Hokianga across to the Bay of Islands is an hour to an hour and a half drive - you would have time just to get over to the BOI possibly take a ride out to the Hole in the Rock (The BOI is best seen from the water). This would be packing a lot into two days but would be doable. Just driving right up to the Cape and back would be too much.

Hope this helps.

Rarotonga, Cook...
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for Rarotonga, Waiheke Island, Southern Cook Islands, Auckland
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2. Re: North of Auckland

Waiheke Island in the Hauraki Gulf is a short 35 minutes ferry ride from downtown Auckland. The 'island of wines' has pretty beaches, bays, native bush, coastal trails, arts studios and galleries and Stony Batter tunnels. There are plenty of day tours available, and some lovely B&B accommodation.

Ive just returned from a drive to Whangarei Heads. This area has magnificent coastal scenery and many nice bathing bays as well as renowned Ocean Beach. Whangarei city is an easy 2+ hour drive from downtown Auckland. Whangarei Falls are on the road to Tutukaka where the Perfect Day cruise departs to the sacred marine sanctuary of the Poor Kinights Islands,offshore from the Whangarei coastline. From Whangarei you can head cross to the west coast (Bayleys Beach) and then south through kumara (sweet potato) country to Matekohe Kauri Museum, or via Matakana for wineries, arts studios and excellent beaches before returning to Auckland.

If you had 3 days available, and especially wanted to visit Cape Reinga this is a better length of time to drive north to the Bay of Islands (Paihia - Russell - Waitangi - Kerikeri) then taking a coach day-tour to the Cape. There is plenty of historical interest to enjoy in the BOI area, as well as the cruises and Cape coach tour.

The drive from downtown Auckland to Paihia takes approx 3.5 hours. If time is restricted and you want to see the Cape then the Salt Air fly-drive half-day tour from Kerikeri airport would be a wonderful way to reach the Cape, and view the Far North coastline from the air.

Queensland...
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3. Re: North of Auckland

Husband and I have just done the auck. to cape drive. We spent several days going up and drove straight down on the return. the return trip took 7 hours, it included a lunch stop. why it took so long is there is lots of road works on the way and some of these held us up for 10 min. We lost our wind screen in one area some idiot doing well over the 30 speed limit sent stones everywhere so be careful. A nice place to stop is the Taipa Resort, I have done a seperate report on it. We also stayed in Paihia, grat place for a look around.

4. Re: North of Auckland

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