All about the 8 Day Northern Wanderer Auckland To Wellington Tour

In just over a week from Auckland down to Wellington you’ll get to experience the best of the North Island, from white sand beaches, hot beaches and bays full of idyllic islands to the inland Tongariro Crossing, and much, much more!

Witness exhilarating mud pools, geysers and sulphur pools and experience beaches and scenery that we promise will WOW you. You will also have the opportunity to kayak, swim with dolphins, surf, fish, horse ride and sail just to name a few fantastic optional activities. Be prepared to let the inner child out with a sandboarding experience and get up close and personal to some of the oldest and most special trees in the world - Giant Kauri’s.

The hikes and biking in the North are epic, with options to visit the Waitangi forest trails, (bordering fantastic beaches and historical villages), a trail around waterfalls or volcanic features as well as peddling around protected Kauri Tree Forests. A highlight for many is the chance to do one of New Zealand’s Great Hikes and the greatest one-day alpine hike - the Tongariro Crossing. This hike takes you through an active volcanic field!

Finish in style in our capital city- affectionately dubbed “the capital of cool”. Wellington is a funky city, with a plethora of quirky cafes, boutique shops and bars, live music and shows. Visit the interactive Te Papa Museum, leisurely stroll the waterfront, or visit the Botanical Gardens. You will find plenty of things to see!

The perfect camping adventure in the North Island.

8 Day Northern Wanderer Auckland To Wellington Tour Itinerary - 8 days

  • Day 1 Auckland to Paihia in the Bay of Islands
    Leaving Auckland at 10am are we head to the "winterless north" and the pristine beaches of the Bay of Islands. Your first stop on this New Zealand adventure is at the incredible Uretiti beach for a swim and a walk along the sand. Grab a rugby ball and frisbee off the bus and brush up on your passing skills at this picturesque beach spot. On arrival in Paihia, the gateway town to the Bay of Islands, choose from the Mangrove walk or a beautiful cycle to the thundering Haruru waterfall. (D)
    Walks today are Mangrove walk to Haruru Falls
    Bike rides: Twin Coast Trail – 16km trail ride
    Activities (optional own cost): Waitangi Treaty House (Maori culture), twilight kayak
  • Day 2 Paihia, Bay of Islands
    Today you will experience a full day exploring the Bay of Islands and its turquoise waters. This subtropical region is the perfect playground for water lovers and a great place to soak up the sunshine. With a staggering 144 islands, the Bay of Islands offers diving, sailing, swimming, and fishing along with some excellent walks in the native forests leading to quiet beaches and special views. This famous region is also home to some of the oldest European settlement in New Zealand and many historic buildings. (B and D)
    Walks today Scenic viewpoint or coastal walkway
    Bike rides: Road cycling or Waitangi forest trail
    Activities (optional own cost): Sailing, fishing, diving, dolphin swimming, kayaking, parasailing, Maori Culture
  • Day 3 Bay of Islands to Orewa
    There is a day full of adventure ahead as we travel to the rugged and soulful West Coast. Our first stop comes with a chance to try your skills sand boarding or if you don’t fancy heading down the sandy slopes there’s a nice coastal walk. Then it’s back on board as we head south towards the Waipoua Forest, traveling through the largest remaining tract of native kauri forests in Northland. You will leave the West Coast and cross back over to the East towards our final destination and camp for tonight, Orewa. Home to one of the Auckland regions longest and safest beaches it’s a great place for a stroll and a swim, or relax at the local hot pools. (B and D)
    Walks: Coastal walk, Waipoua forest
    Bike rides: Twin Coast Cycle Way, Donnelly’s crossing, Te Ara Tahuna Estuary Cycleway
    Activities (own cost): Sandboarding, hot pools & slides
  • Day 4 Orewa to Auckland to Hot Water Beach
    Orewa is often blessed with a beautiful sunrise over the sea which is well worth the early start to check it out before we make our way to Auckland to pick up those joining us and farewell those leaving us there. We then continue on to the Coromandel, renowned for its natural beauty, misty rain-forests and pristine white, sandy beaches. Marvel at the views on a beautiful coastal walk or take in the coastline from the water by kayak. Visit the unique and famous Hot Water Beach to dig, then relax, in your own thermal pool! Soak up the breath-taking scenery and cameras ready for spectacular sunrises at our beach-side camp. (B and D)
    Walks: Stunning coastal walk with views of the Pacific
    Bike rides: 8km scenic road cycling
    Activities (optional own cost): Sea kayaking
  • Day 5 Hot Water Beach to Rotorua
    The morning is filled with activity as we make our way south into the thermal wonderland of Rotorua. On the way, those visiting Hobbiton leave us in Matamata as we continue to the cultural and geological heart of the North Island and the perfect place to experience and learn about Maori culture and the dramatic natural thermals, Rotorua. There is plenty of action to choose from such as Zip Lining, OGO and the Luge or go biking in the Whakarewarewa forest. We recommend finishing your day with a Maori cultural experience at the Tamaki Maori Village, there really is something for everyone! (B and L)
    Walks: Stroll through towering, ancient forests & unique thermal landscapes
    Bike rides: Hauraki Rail Trail, Te Ara Ahi trail to Redwoods, Whakarewarewa Forest
    Activities (optional own cost): Hobbiton, Tamaki Tours, OGO, luge, Polynesian hot pools, zip line canopy tour
  • Day 6 Rotorua to Turangi
    Enjoy a relaxed start to the day before we check out the geysers & mud pools at Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland (included free). First, we visit the Lady Knox Geyser before exploring one of New Zealand’s most extensive geothermal networks, a unique landscape with colourful sulphur lakes and diverse volcanic vistas. We then take time to explore the impressive Huka Falls before arriving into Taupo, considered the North Island's adrenalin capital. Test your fear of heights on the giant swing, bungy or go skydiving, the scenery is well worth it! We finish the day with a beautiful drive around the edge of Lake Taupo on our way into camp at Turangi. (B and D)
    Walks: Walks of various distances past dramatic waterfalls and around Lake Taupo
    Bike rides: Waikato River MTB Trail Huka Falls 6.4km, cycle on the lakefront – up to 10km
    Activities (optional own cost): Skydive, bungy, giant swing, white water rafting
  • Day 7 Turangi to Paekakariki
    Today you have the chance to experience the Tongariro Alpine Crossing - considered NZ's best day hike, offering a remarkable journey across volcanic landscapes. Lava flows, emerald-colored lakes, magnificent views and steaming vents combine to make this an unforgettable hike. For those who aren't keen on hiking, you can enjoy short local walks or cycle the Tongariro river track. After the hike, we make our way south and stay on the Kapiti coast in a quiet little place called Paekakariki. (B, L and D)
    Walks: Tongariro Alpine Crossing, Tongariro river track
    Bike rides: Tongariro river track
    Activities (optional own cost): Tongariro Alpine Crossing (transfer fee only), white water rafting
  • Day 8 Paekakariki to Wellington
    Your tour ends in Wellington with our early arrival at New Zealand’s beautiful capital city by 9 am. Our nation’s capital offers great cafes and bars, along with plenty to see and do including the celebrated Te Papa Museum (free) and the botanical gardens. (B)
Real Adventure Group Real People
Real Kiwi Says:
The Northern Wanderer trip is an intensely fun immersion in the best cultural and scenic experiences that the North Island has to offer in a single week. A great camping adventure for those who like to get up close and personal with nature. Rent a bike to make the most out of this tour! If you're wanting to explore the North Island but don't have time for our 9/10-day full North Island loop then this is the best way to experience the natural and activity highlights. You get to the chance to try kayaking, dolphin swimming, sailing, zorbing, skydiving and bungy to name a few. And once your adrenalin fix is satisfied, try exploring dramatic thermal wonders, fantastic beaches and towering forests on a great selection of hikes and bike rides. There's also plenty of time to relax as you stay on gorgeous beaches and relax in the winterless beautiful Bay of Islands.

8 Day Northern Wanderer Auckland To Wellington Tour Price information
NZD per person



Tour code: NW8
Secure your seat today with only a 10% deposit!
Camping (Twin-Share) September 2020 to March 2021
Local fees payable
Supplement for Single Tent September 2020 to March 2021
Supplement for Single Tent September 2019 to March 2020

Departure information


Auckland pickup: 10am from the Grand Millennium Hotel, 106 -110 Vincent Street, Auckland 


October: 16, 25
November: 3, 12, 21, 30
December: 9, 18, 27


January 5, 14, 23
February 1, 10, 19, 28
March 9, 18, 27


More information

Important Notes

Things you need to know about this tour

This tour is recommended for persons 18 years and older, however, requests for younger participants will be considered on a case by case basis.

We can cater for most dietary requirements, advise us of any dietary needs at the time of booking.

Departs: Auckland, 10 am 172 Quay Street (public bus stop opposite the ferry terminal), Central Auckland City.

How the Trip Works: Our tours are designed to immerse you in the most stunning areas of the country - part of this experience is participatory with regards to accommodation and mealtimes.   

Accommodation Style: Shared tent accommodation, 2 people per tent. If travelling alone you will be sharing with someone of similar age and gender. Upgrade to your own tent for an additional cost. 

Optional Extras: If you are interested in bike hire a single tent upgrade or sleeping bag hire contact us prior to travel.  Pre-booking Activities: Each day we offer optional activities that you are able to book with your guides once you join the tour.  However, due to the popularity of Hobbiton Movie Set tour and the Tamaki Cultural Evening, it is advisable to contact us in advance to pre-book your space.

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