New Zealand, Oceania

New Zealand North Island Explorer (ex Auckland)

Experience the best of New Zealand’s spectacular North Island


12 days

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Wed, Oct 16


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The South Island may have larger-than-life landscapes, but the North Island has a bit of everything. Discover the best of New Zealand’s North Island – with a taste of the South Island too – on this action-packed and well-rounded Kiwi adventure from Auckland to Christchurch. Soak up the summer vib...

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This tour is operated by

Intrepid Travel


Day 1Auckland
Kia-ora! Welcome to New Zealand. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm – ask the hotel reception for the details. As soon as you arrive in this beautiful harbourside town you're surrounded by friendly locals, volcanoes and a strong sense of Maoritanga (the Maori way of life). There is a distinct Pacific flavour to the 'City of Sails' and this can be seen in the streets and the local markets. The waterfront region, built to its current state for the America's Cup sailing challenges, is now a well-frequented local bar and restaurant hub. If you have extra time you can take a day trip to one of the many outer islands in the Hauraki Gulf, hike to one of the 22 nearby volcanoes, or keep it simple with a stroll and a coffee (the lively Ponsonby area is just a short walk away).
Day 2Bay of Islands
Departing Auckland this morning, head north to the beautiful Bay of Islands (approximately 4 hours; 225 kilometres). There's some beautiful scenery along the way, so sit back and enjoy the rolling green hills as your leader explains a bit about this part of New Zealand and what's coming on the journey ahead. There will be stops in small towns so you can stretch your legs and grab a snack. Arriving in Paihia, where we'll spend the night, settle into your accommodation and enjoy the sea breeze. This afternoon is a good time to get to know your fellow travellers – perhaps over one of New Zealand's many renowned white wines or small-batch craft beers. It's also a good time to peruse the list of Bay of Islands optional activities, as there are lots to choose from.
Day 3Bay of Islands
In the morning you might get the chance to go kayaking under a waterfall, cruise in search of seabirds, take photos from stunning lookout points, or explore historic towns and sites, the Bay of Islands is a delight. The Bay of Islands is where the treaty of Waitangi was signed between 500 Maori chiefs and the British Crown, and a trip to the Treaty Grounds to learn more about this is well worth your time. This afternoon head out on a relaxing lunchtime cruise and see the stunning harbour scenery while eating some delicious local food.
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Trip title

New Zealand North Island Explorer Southbound

Trip code



Validity: 01 Oct 2019 to 31 Dec 2020


The South Island may have larger-than-life landscapes, but the North Island has a bit of everything. Discover the best of New Zealand’s North Island – with a taste of the South Island too – on this action-packed and well-rounded Kiwi adventure from Auckland to Christchurch. Soak up the summer vibes ...
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Physical Rating


Joining point

Kiwi International Hotel

Joining point description

The Kiwi International Hotel is located right in the heart of Auckland City with a 24hr reception and is located very close to the airport bus stop. Facilities include free luggage storage, wireless internet, TV lounge and guest laundry.

Joining point instructions

Auckland International Airport is approx 23km to the city centre. Transfers are available with Airbus and Super Shuttle.

Finish point

Breakfree Christchurch

Finish point description

This innovative and stylish hotel has a unique urban feel throughout with the level of integrated technology. Featuring Samsung Smart TV technology with screen mirroring, wireless keyboards and free WiFi This Christchurch accommodation is located in the heart of the CBD near Manchester and Hereford...
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Important information

1. Tour commences in Auckland with group meeting on day 1 at 6:00pm and finishes on arrival in Christchurch on day 12 at approx 6PM. Please take this into consideration when booking any onward flights. We recommend you book accommodation in advance and extend your stay. 2. A single supplement is av...
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Group leader

All Intrepid group trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders. In New Zealand your group leader is also your driver, taking you from start to finish in a coaster vehicle. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Our cre...
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Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas your itin...
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Wireless (wi-fi) is common across accommodation in New Zealand. Some properties may charge a fee for use.  Cafe's and pubs across NZ may have wi-fi for a fee, with those in more tourist area's offering it for free. Shopping centre's, airports and other public spaces offer limited free wi-fi access....
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Visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. Entry requirements can change at any time, so it's important that you check for the latest information. Please visit the relevant consular website of the country or countries you’re visiting for detailed and up-to-date visa information specif...
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Why we love it

Discover Waitomo's incredible limestone cave system, with night walks to see the glow worms – or better yet, some underground black-water rafting

Is this trip right for you

The Tongariro Crossing is not an easy hike, so be prepared! It’s 20 kilometres long, and especially challenging in the wet. But it’s the best hike in the whole country, which is saying a lot in a country like New Zealand! So rest assured it’s worth the effort. Accommodation on this trip isn't luxur...
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Our trips require a level of independence and physical endurance. Before embarking on one of our trips, it is important to consider your physical and mental health and your suitability for the trip. It is recommended that you consult with your doctor about your current health and the possible implic...
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Food and dietary requirements

While travelling with us you'll experience the vast array of wonderful food available in the world. Your group leader will be able to suggest restaurants to try during your trip. On our camping trips we often cook the region's specialities so you don't miss out. To give you the maximum flexibility i...
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Money matters

The currency of New Zealand is the New Zealand dollar (NZD). US$1 = NZ$1.42 (rate current for March 2017). For the latest exchange rate refer to or check at your local bank or in the newspaper prior to travel. The most convenient and cheapest way to acquire money is via an Automated T...
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What to take

ESSENTIALS: Layers! New Zealand has relaxed attitudes to standards of dress however there are a few practical considerations. New Zealand has a temperate climate but be prepared for colder temperatures (occasionally snow) even in summer months. Bring a waterproof jacket. The sunshine in New Zealand ...
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Climate and seasonal

FLEXIBLE ITINERARY: Our routes have been carefully chosen to include the best night stops and highlights. However, as road conditions, weather, local restrictions and group input may vary, no two trips will ever be the same. With the help of your tour leader and fellow travellers you may modify cert...
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A couple of rules

Everyone has the right to feel safe when they travel. We don’t tolerate any form of violence (verbal or physical) or sexual harassment, either between customers or involving our leaders, partners or local people. Sexual relationships between a tour leader and a customer are strictly forbidden. Use...
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Emergency contact

In the case of a genuine crisis or emergency only, Trek Tracks can be reached on Tel: +64 (0) 7 377 8015 or +64 (0) 277678675. For further contact details please use the following page: For general contact details please use the following page: While...
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Responsible travel

We believe strongly in low impact or rather positive impact tourism. Broadly speaking this means that we try to minimise the negative aspects of tourism on the local cultures and environments that we visit and highlight the positive aspects. Please visit our website for further details and suggestio...
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The Intrepid Foundation

Help us change thousands of lives by creating meaningful work and supporting skills training in communities around the world. The Intrepid Foundation is the not-for-profit for Intrepid Group. We work with local organisations around the world to improve the livelihoods of vulnerable individuals and...
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Accommodation notes

Our accommodation in New Zealand are a mix of Motels, Hotels, Ski lodges and backpacker lodges which have a friendly festive atmosphere and good facilities. All bedding is included.  Accommodation is on a twin share basis, and single travellers are paired with someone of the same sex. On rare occas...
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Transport notes

You will be travelling in a coaster vehicle specially designed for local conditions.

Travel insurance

Travel insurance is compulsory for all our trips. We require that, at a minimum, you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. When trav...
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Your fellow travellers

As you travel on a group trip you will be exposed to all the pleasures and maybe some of the frustrations of travelling in a group. Your fellow travellers will probably come from all corners of the world and likely a range of age groups too. We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and pr...
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Itinerary disclaimer

ITINERARY CHANGES: Our itineraries are updated regularly throughout the year based on customer feedback and to reflect the current situation in each destination. The information included in this Essential Trip Information may therefore differ from when you first booked your trip. It is important tha...
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Lodge (11 nts)
New Zealand North Island Explorer (ex Auckland)