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 Paihia Harbour. Flagstaff Hill Historic Reserve 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), Christ Church (in Russell) and Waipoua Forest (in Waipoua Forest). There's lots more to do: admire the sheer force of Rainbow Falls, contemplate the long history of Waitangi National Trust & Treaty House, grab your bike and head to Waitangi Mountain Bike Park, and Head underground at Kawiti Caves.

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 · Historic Sites

Side Trips

Find places to stay Oct 2 — 9:

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

Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Wildlife

Side Trips

Find places to stay Oct 9 — 11:

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:

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 Ruakuri Walk. You'll discover tucked-away gems like Timber Trail NZ and Ruakuri Cave. Get out of town with these interesting Waitomo Caves side-trips: Omaru Falls (in Aria) and Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari (in Pukeatua). There's still lots to do: take in the dramatic scenery at Marakopa Falls, explore the fascinating underground world of Caveworld, explore the striking landscape at Mangapohue Natural Bridge Walk, and stroll through Otorohanga Kiwi House & Native Bird Park.

To find photos, ratings, reviews, and tourist information, you can read our Waitomo Caves online tour planner.

Traveling by car from Whangamata to Waitomo Caves takes 3 hours. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 18th (Mon) so you can go by car to Rotorua.

Things to do in Waitomo Caves

Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Trails

Side Trips

Find places to stay Oct 13 — 18:

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 Papamoa Beach. We've included these beaches for you: Ohope Beach and Pilot Bay. Step out of Rotorua to go to Whakatane and see Whakatane River Walk, which is approximately 1h 25 min away. There's much more to do: tour the pleasant surroundings at Hell's Gate Geothermal Reserve & Mud Spa, witness a stunning natural landmark at Waikite Valley Thermal Pools, get the adrenaline pumping with an extreme tour, and hike along Blue Lake Track.

To see reviews, more things to do, other places to visit, and other tourist information, refer to the Rotorua planner.

You can drive from Waitomo Caves to Rotorua in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. In October, daily temperatures in Rotorua can reach 21°C, while at night they dip to 13°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 24th (Sun) so you can drive to Taupo.

Things to do in Rotorua

Parks · Outdoors · Wildlife · Nature

Side Trips

Find places to stay Oct 18 — 24:

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 Huka Falls. Take a break from the city and head to Huka Falls Walkway and Orakei Korako Geothermal Park & Cave. And it doesn't end there: explore and take pictures at Spa Thermal Park and Riverbank Recreational and Scenic Reserve, push the limits with an extreme tour, explore the striking landscape at Craters of the Moon, and explore the activities along Lake Taupo.

To find maps, ratings, other places to visit, and other tourist information, go to the Taupo trip planner.

Getting from Rotorua to Taupo by car takes about 1.5 hours. Other options: 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:

Tongariro National Park

— 6 nights
Tongariro National Park has a long history of preserving New Zealand's pristine alpine landscape.
Mount Ruapehu and Turoa Ski Area are good opportunities to explore the local culture. Discover out-of-the-way places like Whakapapa - Mt Ruapehu 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: admire the sheer force of Tawhai Falls, explore the activities along Tama Lakes, and stroll through Tongariro Northern Circuit.

To see more things to do, ratings, photos, and other tourist information, read Tongariro National Park trip itinerary builder site.

Take a shuttle from Taupo to Tongariro National Park in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and taxi. Finish your sightseeing early on the 4th (Thu) to allow enough time 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:

Whanganui

— 3 nights
Explore hidden gems such as Tawhiti Museum and St Joseph's Church. Visiting Foxton Beach and Virginia Lake will get you outdoors. Take a break from Whanganui with a short trip to Te Manawa Museum of Art, Science & Heritage in Palmerston North, about 1 hour away.

To find other places to visit, ratings, reviews, and tourist information, use the Whanganui trip planner.

You can drive from Tongariro National Park to Whanganui in 2.5 hours. In November, daytime highs in Whanganui are 17°C, while nighttime lows are 15°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 7th (Sun) early enough to travel to Wellington.

Things to do in Whanganui

Historic Sites · Parks · Museums · Outdoors

Side Trips

Find places to stay Nov 4 — 7:

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 Old St Paul's for their historical value. Visiting Kapiti Island Nature Tours and Otari-Wilton's Bush Native Botanic Garden will get you outdoors. Venture out of the city with trips to Staglands Wildlife Reserve (in Upper Hutt) and Paraparaumu Beach (in Paraparaumu). There's still lots to do: appreciate the history behind National War Memorial, see the interesting displays at Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, take an in-depth tour of Wellington Museum, and stroll through Matiu / Somes Island.

Plan a Wellington trip in moments using our itinerary builder.

Traveling by car from Whanganui to Wellington takes 3 hours. November in Wellington sees daily highs of 20°C and lows of 13°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 13th (Sat) early enough to fly to Napier.

Things to do in Wellington

Parks · Outdoors · Nature · Wildlife

Side Trips

Find places to stay Nov 7 — 13:

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 River Rafting & Tubing. Do some cultural sightseeing at Wine Tours & Tastings and Otatara Pa Historic Reserve Walk. Get out of town with these interesting Napier side-trips: Bell Rock Walkway (in Tutira) and Te Mata Peak (in Hastings). And it doesn't end there: do a tasting at Moana Park Estate Winery, stop by New Zealand Wood and Jade, pause for some serene contemplation at Waiapu Anglican Cathedral, Napier, New Zealand, and see the interesting displays at British Car Museum.

To see other places to visit, more things to do, where to stay, and other tourist information, use the Napier tour itinerary maker tool.

Fly from Wellington to Napier in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 18th (Thu) to allow time to travel to Gisborne.

Things to do in Napier

Outdoors · Tours · Wineries · Parks

Side Trips

Find places to stay Nov 13 — 18:

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 Nikau Loop Track. Go for a jaunt from Gisborne to Wairoa to see Mangaone Caves Track about 1h 10 min away. It doesn't end there: pause for some serene contemplation at Saint Mary's Church.

To see ratings, more things to do, photos, and more tourist information, you can read our Gisborne vacation builder website.

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

Things to do in Gisborne

Parks · Outdoors · Beaches · Trails

Side Trips

Find places to stay Nov 18 — 21:

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:

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.