60 days in North Island Itinerary

60 days in North Island Itinerary

Created using Inspirock North Island route planner

Make it your trip
Fly
1
Paihia
— 7 nights
Drive
2
Whitianga
— 2 nights
Drive
3
Whangamata
— 2 nights
Drive
4
Waitomo Caves
— 5 nights
Drive
5
Rotorua
— 6 nights
Drive
6
Taupo
— 5 nights
Shuttle
7
Tongariro National Park
— 6 nights
Drive
8
Whanganui
— 3 nights
Drive
9
Wellington
— 6 nights
Fly
10
Napier
— 5 nights
Drive
11
Gisborne
— 3 nights
Fly
12
Auckland
— 8 nights
Fly

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Paihia

— 7 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.
You'll discover tucked-away gems like Swim with Dolphins and Flagstaff Hill Historic Reserve. Christ Church and Pompallier Mission and Printery are good opportunities to explore the local culture. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Paihia: Tane Mahuta Walk (in Opononi), Waipoua Forest (in Waipoua Forest) and Poor Knights Island Marine Reserve (in Whangarei). There's lots more to do: tour the pleasant surroundings at Paihia Harbour, surround yourself with nature on a nature and wildlife tour, grab your bike and head to Waitangi Mountain Bike Park, and take in the dramatic scenery at Rainbow Falls.

To see other places to visit, where to stay, reviews, and tourist information, you can read our Paihia trip planner.

London, UK to Paihia is an approximately 30-hour flight. The time zone changes from Greenwich Mean Time to New Zealand Standard Time, which is usually a 12 hour difference. Cap off your sightseeing on the 9th (Sat) early enough to go by car to Whitianga.

Things to do in Paihia

Parks · Wildlife · Outdoors · Nature

Side Trips

Find places to stay Oct 2 — 9:
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Whitianga

— 2 nights
Whitianga is a town on the Coromandel Peninsula, in the Waikato Region of New Zealand's North Island. Start off your visit on the 10th (Sun): examine the collection at Mercury Bay Museum, then see the top attractions with Cave Cruzer, and then tour the pleasant surroundings at Hahei Beach Walk. On your second day here, admire all the interesting features of Shakespeare Cliff Scenic and Historic Reserve and then take in the natural beauty of Hot Water Beach.

To see traveler tips, where to stay, more things to do, and more tourist information, refer to the Whitianga holiday maker tool.

Traveling by car from Paihia to Whitianga takes 5.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and shuttle; or take a bus. Expect a daytime high around 20°C in October, and nighttime lows around 13°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 11th (Mon) early enough to go by car to Whangamata.

Things to do in Whitianga

Parks · Outdoors · Wildlife · Beaches

Side Trips

Find places to stay Oct 9 — 11:
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Whangamata

— 2 nights
The town of Whangamatā is sited on the southeast coast of the Coromandel Peninsula in the North Island of New Zealand. Start off your visit on the 12th (Tue): stroll through Whangamata Beach and then hike along Waihi Martha Mine Pit Rim Walkway. On the 13th (Wed), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: take in nature's colorful creations at Ngatea Water Gardens, trek along Karangahake Gorge Historic Walkway, and then explore the landscape on two wheels at Hauraki Rail Trail.

For where to stay, ratings, and tourist information, read Whangamata trip planner.

Traveling by car from Whitianga to Whangamata takes 1.5 hours. Expect a daytime high around 21°C in October, and nighttime lows around 13°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 13th (Wed) so you can travel to Waitomo Caves.

Things to do in Whangamata

Parks · Outdoors · Trails · Beaches

Side Trips

Find places to stay Oct 11 — 13:
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Waitomo Caves

— 5 nights
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.
Escape the urban bustle at Spellbound Glowworm & Cave Tours and Mangapohue Natural Bridge Walk. You'll discover tucked-away gems like Ruakuri Walk and Ruakuri Cave. Get out of town with these interesting Waitomo Caves side-trips: Timber Trail NZ (in Pureora Forest Park), Omaru Falls (in Aria) and Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari (in Pukeatua). And it doesn't end there: admire the sheer force of Marakopa Falls, explore the fascinating underground world of Caveworld, and tour the pleasant surroundings at Otorohanga Kiwi House & Native Bird Park.

For reviews, where to stay, maps, and other tourist information, read Waitomo Caves trip itinerary planner.

Drive from Whangamata to Waitomo Caves in 3 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 18th (Mon) early enough to drive to Rotorua.

Things to do in Waitomo Caves

Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Trails

Side Trips

Find places to stay Oct 13 — 18:
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Rotorua

— 6 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.
Discover out-of-the-way places like Waimangu Volcanic Valley and Hell's Gate Geothermal Reserve & Mud Spa. We've included these beaches for you: Papamoa Beach and Pilot Bay. Explore Rotorua's surroundings by going to Whakatane (Ohope Beach & Whakatane River Walk). There's much more to do: tour the pleasant surroundings at Paradise Valley Springs Wildlife Park, take in the natural beauty of Waikite Valley Thermal Pools, stop by Eat Street, and whizz through the canopy at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks.

To find where to stay, photos, maps, and tourist information, read Rotorua route planner.

Traveling by car from Waitomo Caves to Rotorua takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. In October in Rotorua, expect temperatures between 21°C during the day and 13°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 24th (Sun) to allow enough time to drive to Taupo.

Things to do in Rotorua

Parks · Outdoors · Wildlife · Nature

Side Trips

Find places to stay Oct 18 — 24:
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Taupo

— 5 nights

Great Cloak of Tia

The resort town of Taupo lies on the banks of Lake Taupo, the largest body of water in the whole of Australasia.
You'll discover tucked-away gems like Kayaking & Canoeing and Lake Taupo. Take a break from the city and head to Huka Falls Walkway and Huka Falls. And it doesn't end there: admire all the interesting features of Spa Thermal Park and Riverbank Recreational and Scenic Reserve, get the adrenaline pumping with an extreme tour, take in the dramatic natural features at Craters of the Moon, and take in the natural beauty of Orakei Korako Geothermal Park & Cave.

Plan a Taupo trip in moments using our itinerary builder.

Traveling by car from Rotorua to Taupo takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 29th (Fri) to allow enough time to take a shuttle to Tongariro National Park.

Things to do in Taupo

Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Tours

Side Trips

Find places to stay Oct 24 — 29:
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Tongariro National Park

— 6 nights
Tongariro National Park has a long history of preserving New Zealand's pristine alpine landscape.
Mount Ruapehu and Tawhai Falls are good opportunities to explore the local culture. Discover out-of-the-way places like Turoa Ski Area and Taranaki Falls. Take a break from Tongariro National Park with a short trip to National Army Museum in Waiouru, about 1h 20 min away. Spend the 1st (Mon) exploring nature at Te Porere Redoubt. On the 4th (Thu), hike the day away at Horsemtrails. Next up on the itinerary: tour the pleasant surroundings at Whakapapa - Mt Ruapehu, explore the activities along Tama Lakes, trek along Tongariro Northern Circuit, and admire the sheer force of Mangawhero Falls.

For photos, ratings, where to stay, and other tourist information, go to the Tongariro National Park trip site.

You can take a shuttle from Taupo to Tongariro National Park in 1.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or do a combination of bus and taxi. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 4th (Thu) early enough to drive to Whanganui.

Things to do in Tongariro National Park

Parks · Outdoors · Nature · Trails

Side Trip

Find places to stay Oct 29 — Nov 4:
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Whanganui

— 3 nights
Explore hidden gems such as Tawhiti Museum and Cameron Blockhouse. Visiting Foxton Beach and Virginia Lake will get you outdoors. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Whanganui: Te Manawa Museum of Art, Science & Heritage (in Palmerston North) and St Joseph's Church (in Jerusalem).

To find other places to visit, more things to do, ratings, and tourist information, refer to the Whanganui trip planner.

You can drive from Tongariro National Park to Whanganui in 2.5 hours. In November, plan for daily highs up to 17°C, and evening lows to 15°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 7th (Sun) to allow enough time to travel to Wellington.

Things to do in Whanganui

Parks · Museums · Historic Sites · Outdoors

Side Trips

Find places to stay Nov 4 — 7:
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Wellington

— 6 nights

Harbour Capital

Wellington, the world's southernmost capital city and New Zealand's second most populous urban area, combines the nation's rugged history and nature with its modern and cosmopolitan present.
Visit Cape Palliser Lighthouse and Wellington Railway Station for their historical value. Visiting Kapiti Island Nature Tours and Matiu / Somes Island will get you outdoors. Venture out of the city with trips to Paraparaumu Beach (in Paraparaumu) and Staglands Wildlife Reserve (in Upper Hutt). There's much more to do: pause for some photo ops at National War Memorial, explore the activities along Oriental Bay, take an in-depth tour of Wellington Museum, and take in nature's colorful creations at Otari-Wilton's Bush Native Botanic Garden.

To find maps, ratings, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read our Wellington day trip planning app.

Drive from Whanganui to Wellington in 3 hours. In November in Wellington, expect temperatures between 20°C during the day and 13°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 13th (Sat) to allow enough time to fly to Napier.

Things to do in Wellington

Parks · Outdoors · Nature · Wildlife

Side Trips

Find places to stay Nov 7 — 13:
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Napier

— 5 nights
Enjoy the atmosphere and architecture of 1930s design in Napier, one of the best-preserved Art Deco cities in the world.
Escape the urban bustle at Gannet Safaris Overland and Te Mata Peak. Do some cultural sightseeing at Wine Tours & Tastings and Moana Park Estate Winery. When in Napier, make a side trip to see Bell Rock Walkway in Tutira, approximately Tutira away. And it doesn't end there: let the river carry you with a rafting and tubing tour, contemplate the long history of Otatara Pa Historic Reserve Walk, learn about winemaking at Church Road Winery Cellar Door, and view the masterpieces at Birdwoods Gallery.

For maps, traveler tips, reviews, and more tourist information, go to the Napier trip planner.

You can fly from Wellington to Napier in 2.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 18th (Thu) early enough to travel to Gisborne.

Things to do in Napier

Outdoors · Tours · Wineries · Parks

Side Trips

Find places to stay Nov 13 — 18:
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Gisborne

— 3 nights

City of Rivers

A holiday in Gisborne incorporates both leisure and culture.
Relax by the water at Blacks Reef and Whakamahia Beach. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Rere Rockslide and Saint Mary's Church. Change things up with these side-trips from Gisborne: Mangaone Caves Track (in Wairoa) and Nikau Loop Track (in Morere).

For traveler tips, maps, photos, and tourist information, you can read our Gisborne holiday builder.

You can drive from Napier to Gisborne in 3 hours. Finish your sightseeing early on the 21st (Sun) so you can travel to Auckland.

Things to do in Gisborne

Parks · Outdoors · Nature · Trails

Side Trips

Find places to stay Nov 18 — 21:
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Auckland

— 8 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.
Get a sense of the local culture at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki and Beer Tastings & Tours. Visiting Muriwai Gannet Colony and Tawharanui Regional Park will get you outdoors. Get out of town with these interesting Auckland side-trips: Piha Beach (in Piha), Soljans Estate Winery (in Kumeu) and Brick Bay Sculpture Trail (in Snells Beach). And it doesn't end there: tour the pleasant surroundings at Orewa Beach, look for all kinds of wild species at Wildlife Areas, contemplate the geological forces at One Tree Hill (Maungakiekie), and enjoy breathtaking views from SkyTower.

For more things to do, maps, where to stay, and other tourist information, read Auckland day trip tool.

Use the Route module to find suitable travel options from Gisborne to Auckland. In November, plan for daily highs up to 20°C, and evening lows to 20°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 29th (Mon) to allow time to fly back home.

Things to do in Auckland

Parks · Outdoors · Beaches · Wildlife

Side Trips

Find places to stay Nov 21 — 29:
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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
Beaches · Hiking Trails · Thermal Spas
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.