12 days in North Island Itinerary

12 days in North Island Itinerary

Created using Inspirock North Island tour builder

Make it your trip
1
Auckland
— 2 nights
Drive
2
Paihia
— 2 nights
Drive
3
Matakana
— 1 night
Drive
4
Hahei
— 2 nights
Drive
5
Rotorua
— 2 nights
Drive
6
Waitomo Caves
— 1 night
Drive
7
Auckland
— 1 night

S M T W T F S
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Auckland

— 2 nights

City of Sails

The largest and most populous city in New Zealand, Auckland combines a rich history and thriving contemporary culture in an abundance of museums, art galleries, and performance venues.
To find out how to plan a trip to Auckland, use our trip itinerary maker.

If you are flying in from Australia, the closest major aiports are Auckland International Airport and Hamilton International Airport. In November, plan for daily highs up to 20°C, and evening lows to 20°C. On the 3rd (Wed), you'll have the morning to explore before heading off to Paihia.

Things to do in Auckland

Nature · Parks
Find places to stay Nov 1 — 3:
Highlights from your trip

Paihia

— 2 nights
The main tourist town in the Bay of Islands area, Paihia gives visitors a good range of accommodations, a convenient town center, long sandy beaches, and interesting architecture.
Your day by day itinerary now includes Kawiti Caves. Kick off your visit on the 3rd (Wed): Head underground at Kawiti Caves. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: get a dose of the wild on Russell Nature Walks.

To see more things to do, photos, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read Paihia trip planner.

You can drive from Auckland to Paihia in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can fly; or take a bus. You will have some time to spend on the 5th (Fri) before leaving for Matakana.

Things to do in Paihia

Nature · Parks · Wildlife · Outdoors

Side Trips

Find places to stay Nov 3 — 5:
Highlights from your trip

Matakana

— 1 night
Matakana is a small town in the Rodney District of New Zealand. Your day by day itinerary now includes Matakana Village as well as Sheepworld. Kick off your visit on the 5th (Fri): experience rural life at Sheepworld, then admire the majestic nature at Mahurangi Regional Park, and then kick back and relax at Snells Beach.

To see more things to do, photos, other places to visit, and other tourist information, go to the Matakana trip itinerary site.

You can drive from Paihia to Matakana in 3 hours. In November, plan for daily highs up to 20°C, and evening lows to 19°C. On the 6th (Sat), you'll have the morning to explore before heading off to Hahei.

Things to do in Matakana

Parks · Wildlife · Beaches · Outdoors

Side Trip

Find places to stay Nov 5 — 6:

Hahei

— 2 nights
On the 6th (Sat), kick back and relax at Hahei Beach Walk. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 7th (Sun): tour the pleasant surroundings at Hot Water Beach, then explore the activities along Stingray Bay, and then stroll through Cathedral Cove Walk.

To see photos, other places to visit, ratings, and other tourist information, you can read our Hahei day trip tool.

Drive from Matakana to Hahei in 3.5 hours. Expect a bit cooler evenings in Hahei when traveling from Matakana in November, with lows around 15°C. On the 8th (Mon), you'll have the morning to explore before heading off to Rotorua.

Things to do in Hahei

Parks · Outdoors · Trails · Beaches

Side Trip

Find places to stay Nov 6 — 8:

Rotorua

— 2 nights

Sulphur City

Surrounded by lakes and featuring impressive areas of geothermal landscape, the city of Rotorua offers an otherwordly landscape and a welcoming, peaceful environment, with the culture of the native Maori people very much in the foreground.
On the 8th (Mon), steep yourself in history at Te Puia and then wander the streets of Eat Street. Here are some ideas for day two: relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour.

To see other places to visit, ratings, reviews, and tourist information, refer to the Rotorua road trip planning tool.

Getting from Hahei to Rotorua by car takes about 3 hours. In November, daytime highs in Rotorua are 23°C, while nighttime lows are 15°C. You will leave for Waitomo Caves on the 10th (Wed).

Things to do in Rotorua

Nature · Parks · Historic Sites · Adventure
Find places to stay Nov 8 — 10:

Waitomo Caves

— 1 night
Head deep beneath the surface of the earth at Waitomo Caves, a village and cave system that draws both extreme sports enthusiasts and those wanting something a little more relaxed.
Start off your visit on the 10th (Wed): Head underground at Aranui Cave, relax in the rural setting at Waitomo Big Bird & Miniature Animal Petting Farm, then explore the fascinating underground world of Waitomo Glowworm Caves, and finally Head underground at Footwhistle Glowworm Cave.

To see more things to do, photos, ratings, and more tourist information, read Waitomo Caves online visit planner.

Drive from Rotorua to Waitomo Caves in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 11th (Thu) so you can go by car to Auckland.

Things to do in Waitomo Caves

Nature · Parks

Side Trip

Find places to stay Nov 10 — 11:

Auckland

— 1 night

City of Sails

Kick off your visit on the 11th (Thu): stroll through Mission Bay Beach, get a new perspective on things with Boat Tours & Water Sports, and then explore the landscape on two wheels at Nelson Street Cycleway.

To see other places to visit, maps, where to stay, and more tourist information, go to the Auckland tour itinerary builder site.

Drive from Waitomo Caves to Auckland in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or do a combination of bus and train.

Things to do in Auckland

Outdoors · Parks · Adventure · Beaches
Find places to stay Nov 11 — 12:

North Island travel guide

4.5
Hot Springs · Specialty Museums · Landmarks
The Fish of Māui
Home to both New Zealand's capital city and its most populous one, North Island remains the more urbane and modern of the country's two main islands. With a wealth of museums and places of historical importance, the island tells the story of New Zealand's inhabitants, from the native Maoris and European settlers to the cosmopolitan and inclusive population of the modern era. Away from the industrial and cultural centers, a tour of North Island can take you through the impressive and world-renowned landscape of deep gorges, rolling rivers, enormous lakes, and areas of volcanic activity--home to an amazing biodiversity of terrestrial and marine animal and plant life. Active vacationers on North Island may appreciate the extreme sports, and don't miss a chance to relax in its hot water springs.

Coromandel Peninsula travel guide

4.3
Hiking Trails · Thermal Spas · Hot Springs
Jutting out into the ocean just north of Auckland, Coromandel Peninsula remains a largely uninhabited land of native rainforest and unspoiled sandy beaches. Thanks to the area's preserved wilderness and natural abundance, ecotourism in Coromandel Peninsula has gained in popularity, attracting adventurous vacationers and outdoors enthusiasts. The coastline offers many coves, diving sites, and expeditions out into the ocean for the chance to spot whales and dolphins. Hike, cycle, or kayak inland for scenic landscape largely untouched by human development and industry.

Waitomo District travel guide

4.6
Caves · River Rafting & Tubing · Nature & Wildlife Tours