8 Day North Island Walking Highlights

8 Day North Island Walking Highlights

You're on the edge of your next adventure. From Auckland and Rotorua to the glistening Lake Taupo, you'll be delighted at every turn, trading your every day for an unforgettable holiday. Dare yourself to explore the fertile grounds of the Tongariro Crossing, getting oh-so-close to not one but three volcanos, mixing in a daring dash or two to the shore of an emerald pool. A truly once in a lifetime walking holiday!

Tour Info

Tour Type: Self Drive Tours
From: Auckland to Wellington
Departures: Jan 2020 - March 2021
Price: From (NZD) $2179 per person
Tour Operator: Relaxing Journeys
Duration: 8 Days
Tour Code: GWNIWH


7 nights accommodation
Rental Vehicle of your choice
2 nights stay in Auckland, Rotorua & Tongariro
Full day guided walk in Auckland, including lunch
Guided walking tour of Ruakuri Cave
Mt Tarawera 4WD and guided walk
Full day guided Tongariro Crossing walk including lunch
Te Po - Maori cultural experience with traditional hangi


Prices are per person based on twin-share, and are subject to availability. Prices are correct at the time of submission but are subject to change without notice. Valid for travel January 2020 – March 2021. Blackout periods may apply. A non-refundable deposit of $250 per person is required at time of booking.

Click here for our full terms and conditions.

Click on the prices below to enquire.

* Prices shown are per person (based on two people travelling).
* 2 Bedroom Motel pricing also available with Exclusive Specials. Please request a quote for prices.

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Day by Day Tour Itinerary

Day 1
Arrive Auckland

Welcome to Auckland! Once you’ve moved through customs and collected your baggage, it’s time to sign for your economy rental vehicle and check-in at your accommodation. You’ve landed on the doorstep of New Zealand’s largest city, an idyllic setting overlooking the forested Waitakere Ranges, the sheltered Manukau Harbour and the island-studded Hauraki Gulf to the north. No wonder over a million people choose to live here! Beautiful beaches and dreamy offshore islands are just half an hour from the city. In fact, the sea is so much a part of the place that an unusually high number of people own their own boats, giving the city its moniker of the ‘City of Sails’. (2 nights)

Your choice of accommodation

Day 2

Good morning! Your first full day in New Zealand has arrived and it’s jam-packed with an all-day tour of Auckland, beyond the city limits and into the wild.

Our first stop transports you to the sweeping decks of the Arataki Centre in the Waitakere Ranges, for a serene, smooth start to the day. Take a turn around the area and admire the Maori carvings guarding the buildings, before departing for the western wilderness.

Your guide will lead you through Auckland’s coastal rainforest, where the local flora and fauna meet a rugged coastline and the green ferns grow large. Pick a path along a bubbling stream, breathing in the fresh air, before writing your name on the black sand beach close by. Tuck into a kiwi-style lunch and watch the waves come in.

Your post-lunch journey encourages you to explore an untouched, ancient rainforest, where mature 1000-year-old kauri trees tower over the thriving canopy, shading the forest floor from natural threats. Let your guide quietly set the scene, sharing histories and facts about the native animal species, increasing your appreciation for this beautiful and unseen part of Auckland.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 3
Auckland - Ruakuri Cave - Rotorua

Get the engine running and carry yourself away from Auckland and along the Southern Motorway to reach the market garden area of Pukekohe. Continue through Hamilton – New Zealand’s fourth largest city and the fertile Waikato region to arrive at Waitomo.

Enjoy a guided tour of the world famous Ruakuri Cave where you’ll experience a captivating blend of Waitomo’s most compelling subterranean delights. In any one sightseeing tour, your guide will bring you up close to shimmering glow-worms, elaborate cave formations, underground rivers, myths, legends and sacred Maori sites. After you’ve finished your tour, continue over the glorious Mamaku Ranges to reach the thermal capital of Rotorua. (2 nights)

Your choice of accommodation

Day 4

Today, you’ll discover just how volatile this region used to be, when Rotorua fell victim to an expected pyroclastic event. On June 10th, 1886, Mt Tarawera erupted, putting the world’s youngest geothermal valley of Waimangu on the global radar, destroying the legendary Pink and White Terraces in a devastating surge of lava. You’ll be guided through this historic entry moment by moment, as Rotorua’s landscape comes to life through stories and commentary. With unmatched scenic vistas and 360 panoramic views this experience is ideal for all ages and includes an optional run into the heart of the volcanic crater.

As the evening settles in and the stars brighten the sky, you’ll be treated to a Maori feast, as Te Po’s cultural experience promises hours of fun, thought and Maori kai (indigenous food). After a formal Maori welcome, relax and enjoy a captivating performance by the local people, including traditional songs and the renowned haka. Following a truly delectable dinner, you will be transported by people movers to enjoy the spectacular lighting of the Whakarewarewa Geothermal Valley.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 5
Rotorua - Taupo - Ohakune

Pack a lunch and strap yourself in for a short drive to Lake Taupo, New Zealand’s largest lake and popular hotspot for sight-seeing, picnicking and camera-snapping moments. Begin your trip at the Aratiatia Rapids, pausing to learn more about the unique power generation system, and continue onwards to the mighty Huka Falls on the Waikato River, before reaching the banks of Lake Taupo.

Have a nibble and take a walk before continuing onto Tongariro National Park, centred around the volcanoes of Ruapehu, Tongariro and Ngauruhoe. The park is only one of a handful of sites in the world that has dual World Heritage status in recognition of both its natural and cultural values. (2 nights)

Your choice of accommodation

Day 6
Ohakune - Tongariro Crossing Trek - Ohakune

A real and rare treat, the Tongariro Crossing Track is your own mini-journey into the reaches of volcano country, as a guided tour takes you on a one-day adventure across active terrain. Get your camera ready, as you’ll soon be getting up close and personal with lava flows, mountain springs, emerald lakes, volcanos and stunning views.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 7
Ohakune - Wellington

Take a southern road to Wellington and wind your way through a river-sprung landscape. Break up the drive with a few strategic stops, the first in Shannon for a short hoot at the owl sanctuary; followed by the majestic Mangaweka Gorge and finally Kapiti Island, ideal for bird enthusiasts and those who love to experience something off the beaten track.

Wellington is compact, cultured and full of character. Nestled between the harbour and the hills, the downtown area is ideal for explorations on foot. Enjoy cafés, restaurants, museums and all kinds of shops. Dance, theatre and musical performances are a Wellington specialty.

Your choice of accommodation

Day 8
Depart Wellington

Make your way to Wellington airport today and return your rental car in time for your onward flight.

Your choice of accommodation


There are 1 reviews of this tour from past clients of Relaxing Journeys, averaging 5 out of 5.

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Tour Reviews

Wonderfully organised and a great tour. Thank you to Toni for all her help in this, we added in a few things and everything just fell into place. We are already planning our next relaxing journey.
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Enquire about our 8 Day North Island Walking Highlights

8 Day North Island Walking Highlights
Self Drive Tours
Tour Code: GWNIWH
From (NZD) $2179 per person
Save (NZD) $217 per person
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Terms and conditions apply. Please see tour overview for more information.

1 reviews (5/5)

You're on the edge of your next adventure. From Auckland and Rotorua to the glistening Lake Taupo, you'll be delighted at every turn, trading your eve... Read More

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8 Day North Island Walking Highlights
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