12 days in North Island Itinerary

12 days in North Island Itinerary

Created using Inspirock North Island holiday maker

Plan created by another user. Make it yours
Drive
1
Paihia
— 1 night
Drive
2
Whitianga
— 1 night
Fly
3
Tauranga
— 2 nights
Drive
4
Rotorua
— 2 nights
Drive
5
Taupo
— 3 nights
Drive
6
Hamilton
— 1 night
Drive
7
Auckland
— 1 night

S M T W T F S
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9

1
night
Paihia

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.
Start off your visit on the 25th (Fri): look for all kinds of wild species at Paihia Harbour, take in nature's colorful creations at Waitangi Treaty Grounds, and then get great views at Opua Forest Lookout Track. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 26th (Sat): get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour, then admire the landmark architecture of St Paul's Anglican Church, and then take a tour by water with Boat Tours & Water Sports.

To see other places to visit, photos, traveler tips, and other tourist information, read our Paihia trip builder website.

Auckland to Paihia is an approximately 3-hour car ride. You can also fly; or take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 26th (Sat) so you can drive to Whitianga.

Things to do in Paihia

Wildlife · Parks · Historic Sites · Outdoors

1
night
Whitianga

Whitianga is a town on the Coromandel Peninsula, in the Waikato Region of New Zealand's North Island. Start off your visit on the 27th (Sun): make a trip to The Lost Spring and then take a tour by water with Boat Tours & Water Sports.

Plan my Whitianga trip by asking Inpirock to come up with tips and suggestions.

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. In December, plan for daily highs up to 24°C, and evening lows to 17°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 27th (Sun) to allow enough time to fly to Tauranga.

Things to do in Whitianga

Outdoors · Tours

2
nights
Tauranga

The largest city in the Bay of Plenty, Tauranga features extensive sandy beaches, well-maintained hiking paths, and a good range of accommodations.
On the 28th (Mon), stroll around McLaren Falls Park, then make a trip to Hobbiton Movie Set, and then trek along Mount Maunganui Summit Track. Here are some ideas for day two: surround yourself with nature on Bay Explorer Island & Wildlife Cruise.

To find more things to do, photos, maps, and more tourist information, read our Tauranga online travel route builder.

Getting from Whitianga to Tauranga by flight takes about 2 hours. Other options: drive; or take a bus. In December in Tauranga, expect temperatures between 25°C during the day and 17°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 29th (Tue) so you can drive to Rotorua.

Things to do in Tauranga

Outdoors · Tours · Wildlife · Parks

Side Trip

2
nights
Rotorua

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.
Kick off your visit on the 30th (Wed): relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour, take a peaceful walk through Redwoods, Whakarewarewa Forest, and then kick your exploration up a notch at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks. Keep things going the next day: steep yourself in history at Te Puia, then witness a stunning natural landmark at Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland, then tour the pleasant surroundings at Lake Okareka Walkway, and finally hike along Okere Falls Track.

For maps, where to stay, ratings, and more tourist information, read our Rotorua online tour planner.

Traveling by car from Tauranga to Rotorua takes an hour. Alternatively, you can take a bus. In December in Rotorua, expect temperatures between 25°C during the day and 17°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 31st (Thu) to allow enough time to drive to Taupo.

Things to do in Rotorua

Parks · Outdoors · Nature · Adventure

Side Trip

3
nights
Taupo

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.
Go for a jaunt from Taupo to Tongariro National Park to see Tongariro Alpine Crossing about 1h 15 min away. And it doesn't end there: hike along Huka Falls Walkway, add some adventure to your tour with a kayaking and canoeing tour, don't miss a visit to Aratiatia Rapids, and look for gifts at Huka Honey Hive.

To see other places to visit, where to stay, photos, and tourist information, refer to the Taupo trip planner.

Traveling by car from Rotorua to Taupo takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 3rd (Sun) so you can drive to Hamilton.

Things to do in Taupo

Outdoors · Parks · Trails · Tours

Side Trip

1
night
Hamilton

Tron

On the banks of the Waikato River lies Hamilton, a pretty, active city on North Island.
On the 4th (Mon), see the interesting displays at Waikato Museum, stroll around Hamilton Gardens, and then head outdoors with The Don Rowlands Centre Lake Karapiro.

For more things to do, traveler tips, other places to visit, and more tourist information, go to the Hamilton online itinerary builder.

Drive from Taupo to Hamilton in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 4th (Mon) to allow enough time to drive to Auckland.

Things to do in Hamilton

Parks · Outdoors · Museums

Side Trip

1
night
Auckland

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.
Kick off your visit on the 5th (Tue): enjoy a live performance at SEA LIFE Kelly Tarlton's Aquarium, then learn about all things military at Auckland Museum, then look for gifts at Pauanesia, and finally take in panoramic vistas at SkyTower.

For reviews, traveler tips, photos, and other tourist information, go to the Auckland trip itinerary planner.

Drive from Hamilton to Auckland in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or take a train. In January, daily temperatures in Auckland can reach 22°C, while at night they dip to 22°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Tue) to allow time to travel back home.

Things to do in Auckland

Museums · Parks · Nightlife · Zoos & Aquariums

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 · Landmarks · 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.