“Kia Ora Aotearoa”
Hello/Thank You New Zealand, Land of the Long White Cloud
New Zealand’s North Island is a true gem. A destination that proudly showcases its natural beauty with many attractions and activities to see and do along the way. Spending two weeks here may sound like an abundance of time, when in actual fact, our two-week itinerary in the North Island was filled with activities and allowed us to spend time not only in the cities but the quieter outlying areas of the North Island as well.
The North Island is an unforgettable destination where each region is so unique and different to its neighbour. Ancient rainforests, both active and dormant volcanoes, sacred mountains, tranquil rivers and glorious beaches are just some of the natural beauty you will uncover.
Be tempted by the sweetness of the kiwifruit within the region of Te Puke.
Indulge in a chilled glass of Chardonnay within the wine region of Hawke’s Bay.
Discover the natural mineral springs and geothermal parks surrounding Rotorua.
Educate yourself in Maori culture within the region of Whangarei.
Visit an active volcano on White Island, Bay of Plenty.
Relax at the largest lake in New Zealand, Lake Taupo.
Be captivated by the beauty of UNESCO Tongariro National Park and Tongariro Alpine Crossing.
New Zealand’s North Island is an ideal destination to discover by car. Long, narrow winding roads can lead to all sorts of surprises along the way. Sweet berry farms, fresh honey direct from the gate or delicious artisan cheese factories to tempt your appetite.
However, when planning a trip to the North or the South Island for that matter, remember to keep in mind the distance between destinations and plan your itinerary accordingly. Driving times need to be factored as you may face disruptions along the way!
New Zealand’s North Island has so much to offer and is not to be missed. If time does not permit, day-trips are possible from the main cities of Auckland and Wellington to enable a taste of the surrounding countryside. Though depending on the pace of your holiday, I would definitely recommend appreciating the slower paced lifestyle of the North Island at your own leisure.
Below are some helpful tips for a New Zealand North Island Road Trip.
Allow extra time: As we all know, interruptions can occur at any time. Allow time for road works, slower paced vehicles or animal crossings on country roads. Don’t be in a rush and plan accordingly.
Do your research: Ask locals for tips and valuable suggestions that may come in handy. Make sure to download appropriate mobile phone Apps, (Google Maps) and ensure navigation systems are working and up to date. Even electronic devices have their bad days!
Pick up any local maps at places of interest you may visit, they may be of assistance when internet reception in secluded country areas is low or non-existent.
Be Spontaneous: Unplanned travel can be rewarding. Despite having a plan, allow yourself time for stops along the way. Take a back road or explore a slightly longer route. You never know what you may stumble across.
Utilise i-SITE visitor information centres: These handy official visitor information centres can be found in most main towns. Each centre employs local travel experts, so you are guaranteed helpful local knowledge in regards to accommodation, activities, transport and important travel information.
Traveling with kids: Long road trips can be demanding with children, so make sure you are prepared with adequate snacks, water, games, books, electronic devices (with enough battery life) to keep them entertained.
Save on Fuel: New Zealand fuel prices are quite expensive (in comparison to petrol prices in Australia). Though, some supermarkets offer a discount at participating service stations. So, keep an eye out on your grocery receipt, if you are eligible for the discount and save on your next fuel purchase.
Have you ever visited the North Island of New Zealand, and did you drive?
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