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Explore the North Island with private New Zealand guided tours personalised to suit your group. Our private guided tours are hosted by one of New Zealand’s leading tour guides. Your guide will meet your group at the airport and chauffeur your group to explore the destinations and activities included in your personalised tour package. They will tend to your needs and share valuable local knowledge with your group to enhance your holiday experience. We can cater for groups between 1-40 people.
Our private New Zealand guided tours are flexible and are booked to suit your group’s travel dates and interests.
Read on to learn more about our 21 Day North Island New Zealand Guided Tours.
Arrive in Auckland as your New Zealand guided tours begin. The “City of Sails” is New Zealand’s largest city and is bordered by two stunning harbours. Your personal tour guide will meet you at Auckland International airport and transfer you to your inner city accommodation. Start off your holiday by exploring Auckland with your tour guide visiting attractions such as the Sky Tower, Auckland Zoo and Viaduct Harbour.
Activity Option: This evening you may wish to venture out onto Auckland’s Waitemata Harbour for a unique dining experience. This is an on water dining experience not to be missed in any harbour city especially in Auckland. Enjoy great sailing and as the sun sets watch the night lights of this photogenic city come alive. Your experienced crew talk about Auckland’s unique features. In addition, there is plenty of opportunity to participate in the sailing or sit back and enjoy the sights. Choose from a set menu served by the crew during the dinner stop at a sheltered mooring.
Stay 2 nights in Auckland City.
Leave the hustle and bustle of the city and discover the beautiful Hauraki Gulf Marine Park. This region is visited by a staggering one third of all the types of marine mammals found on earth. Departing directly from the Viaduct Harbour, be welcomed aboard the 20 metre, purpose-built vessel ‘Dolphin Explorer’ for an unforgettable marine mammal eco-safari out on the sparkling waters of the Hauraki Gulf. Surrounded by some of the most abundant marine life in New Zealand, discover what the beautiful Auckland area has to offer. Enjoy a 4.5 hour eco-cruise including guaranteed whale and dolphin viewing – or you get a free trip! Friendly, knowledgeable guides. Commentary on the culture and history of the Hauraki Gulf. Fully licensed bar with snacks available for purchase.
Explore Auckland in the afternoon with your guide, travel to the top of Mt Eden for a spectacular view over the city, or if wine is of interest tour the Auckland Region and visit some of the wineries in the area for a tasting.
Travel time Auckland to Bay of Islands – 3 hours
Travel to the Bay of Islands, renowned for its 144 islands and surreal maritime park. Here you will find an abundance of marine life including whales, penguins and dolphins. In the afternoon relax on one of the many warm secluded beaches and explore the area with your tour guide.
Paihia is the perfect base if you would like to discover the coves and beaches of the Bay of Islands! Paihia is also of historic importance to New Zealand, as this is where the historic Treaty House on the Waitangi Treaty Grounds is located, which marks the beginning of New Zealand as a nation. Just west of Paihia is Haruru, where you’ll find an impressive waterfall and a boardwalk.
Stay 3 nights in Paihia, Bay of Islands.
Today, board the premium Discover the Bay Cruise and see for yourself the best of what the Bay of Islands has to offer. Journey to the Hole in the Rock and if weather permits, sail through it. See marine wildlife including dolphins and stop off at Otehei Bay on Urupukapuka Island to have a swim, go for a walk and relax. This cruise includes a delicious BBQ lunch.
Relax in the Bay of Islands for the rest of the day.
Relax and explore the Bay of Islands with your guide today. You have the option to take a day trip to Cape Reinga, the northernmost point of New Zealand. Cape Reinga is most famously home to a picturesque lighthouse and stunning coastal scenery.
In the afternoon you have the option to experience Maori culture by visiting Waitangi’s treaty house, gardens and national marae (meeting house).
Travel time Bay of Islands to Coromandel Peninsula – 6 hours
Renowned worldwide as a spectacular holiday destination, with warm white sandy beaches, misty rainforests and wilderness a-plenty, the Coromandel is the ideal place to relax and unwind. Relax on the coastline, exploring beaches, volcanic reefs and the world famous Cathedral Cove!
Whitianga is the main settlement of Mercury Bay, an attractive township with a deep-water harbour. Now a vibrant coastal town, Whitianga is evolving into a delightful place to visit. Whitianga has an excellent selection of restaurants and cafés, and the thriving retail community provides an interesting collection of outlets.
Stay 2 nights in Whitianga, Coromandel.
Today join Glass Bottom Boat for a unique boat cruise. Depart from the Whitianga Wharf to explore the breath taking volcanic coastline, including the world famous CATHEDRAL COVE. See the stunning Champagne Bay plus a range of blow holes and sea caves, such as Orua’s Sea Cave, the 2nd largest sea cave in New Zealand! See what lies above and below the surface in the ‘Te Whanganui-A-Hei Marine Reserve and be amazed by all the marine life to be seen.
You can choose your own level of fun. Either sit back and enjoy the amazing marine life through the glass bottom or take the plunge and snorkel amongst the fish. All equipment supplied and no experience necessary. Blue penguins are a common sight and can be seen all year round.
In the afternoon visit attractions, such as Hot Water Beach with your tour guide.
Travel time Coromandel Peninsula to Tauranga – 2.5 hours
The Bay of Plenty is one of the most popular summer holiday destinations in New Zealand. Located along the idyllic Pacific Coast Highway it offers a great mix of activities, beaches and dining experiences.
Tauranga is the main centre, whilst the coastal suburb of Mt Maunganui is the region’s seaside resort. Downtown Tauranga has several historically significant areas to view during a scenic walk around the area. The Strand waterfront area is modern and always buzzing, and is home to a number of cafés, restaurants and pubs.
Stay 2 nights in Tauranga.
Relax in the Bay of Plenty for the day. Around Tauranga are hectares of orchards and gardens producing everything from kiwifruit and citrus fruit to avocados. Add to this bounty the local wines and the plentiful fresh seafood and you just know that this is a place where you will dine well. Mount Maunganui, a short distance from Tauranga, has spectacular beaches. These are a magnet for surfers all year round and voted New Zealand’s best by TripAdvisor.
Travel time Tauranga to Matamata – 1 hour
Make your way to Matamata to discover the real Middle-earth on the most picturesque private farmland near Matamata to visit the Hobbiton Movie Set from The Lord of the Rings film trilogy in a fascinating two-hour guided tour. The set has been completely rebuilt and will remain as it was seen in The Lord of the Rings film trilogy. There are spectacular views across to the Kaimai Ranges from the rolling green hills of the movie set, which is still a working sheep and beef farm. You can relax and soak up the unique atmosphere with a great cup of coffee or a light meal in The Shires Rest Café.
Driving time Matamata to Rotorua – 1 hour
Enjoy the scenic journey to Rotorua, distinguished by Maori culture and geothermal activity. This diverse city will put on a display as you encounter geysers, mud pools, steaming craters and 16 beautiful lakes.
In the evening enjoy a Maori Cultural Experience including a Hangi Dinner. Hear stories and learn how Maori traditions live on today. Experience an authentic Maori welcome. Watch a challenge by the Maori warriors, a karanga (call) from the Maori women welcoming you onto the marae, and a whaikorero (welcome speech). Relax and enjoy the beautiful waiata (songs), the world renowned haka (challenge), and the elegant poi dance. Learn Maori customs including Maori musical instruments, haka and poi. The dining experience is a culinary opportunity like no other. Following dessert, you will be transported down into the valley to conclude your evening beside the awe inspiring Pohutu geyser.
Stay 2 nights in Rotorua.
Today relax and explore Rotorua. You have the option to visit the Redwoods Treewalk, which features 23 suspension bridges through 115-year-old redwood trees, or explore the Government Gardens and Museum, located on the waterfront of Lake Rotorua.
Activity Options: Ride up the Rotorua Gondola to enjoy stunning views over Rotorua. Plus, enjoy a fantastic buffet lunch or dinner at the top of the Gondola. Hells Gate Geothermal Reserve is a great place to visit and view steaming hot pools, bubbling mud pools and geysers. With the option to sit back and relax in a mud pool or sulphur pool.
Travel time Rotorua to Taupo – 1 hour
Enjoy a Peek at the Lake Scenic Floatplane Flight. Take off from Taupo Bay, past Acacia Bay to Rangatira Point, viewing the crystal clear waters of Whakaipo Bay. Climb up through Mapara Valley, view red scoria quarries, then discover the headwaters of the Waikato River. Fly over the Craters of the Moon and over the Borefields of the Wairakei Power Station, followed by a circuit of the Huka Falls, over Taupo to land on the lakefront (20 minutes approx).
Stay 2 nights in Taupo.
Relax in Taupo for the day. Taupo is a great lake for water-skiing, sailing and kayaking. The Maori rock carvings at Mine Bay, which can only be seen from the water, make for a great boat trip or kayaking excursion. The forests surrounding the lake offer hiking and mountain biking to suit all levels of experience. Just north of Lake Taupo you’ll find New Zealand’s most visited attraction, the magnificent Huka Falls, where more than 220,000 litres of water thunder over the cliff face every second.
Travel time Taupo to Napier – 2 hours
Head to the East Coast and discover Napier, the Art Deco Capital of New Zealand, which is also within the country’s oldest and second largest wine growing region, the Hawkes Bay.
Explore the Napier and Hasting wine region in the afternoon with your guide and visit vineyards and cellar doors at your leisure.
Stay 2 nights in Napier.
Enjoy the drive along the scenic coast from Napier to Te Awanga and then visit the worlds largest, most accessible gannet colony at Cape Kidnappers, New Zealand. Gannet Safaris has been guiding visitors over Cape Kidnappers for over 35 years. The safaris are the only way to be driven right to within a few feet of these remarkable birds. There is absolutely no walking required.
You will travel in comfort in the air conditioned 4 x 4 Mini Coach, through Cape Kidnappers Station – traversing riverbeds, broad rolling pastures, through stands of native bush, steep gullies and breathtaking inclines. There is a stop on the way at a spectacular cliff top with panoramic views of Hawkes Bay right across to the Mahia Peninsula. The amazing geology of the area can also be taken in. The 36 km, three hour trip includes a commentary by your tour guide / driver on the farming operation on Cape Kidnappers Station and an introduction to the gannets. On arrival at the gannets you can stretch your legs and take in the mouthwatering scenery from your position at the brink of the cliffs edge – 100 metres above the ocean. Here your driver / guide will serve you light refreshments whilst you enjoy watching the gannets perform around you.
Travel time Napier to Wellington – 4 hours
Wellington, New Zealand’s capital city, has so much to offer. Set on the edge of a stunning harbour, surrounded by rolling hills, it’s a city rich in culture waiting to be explored. From shopping and picturesque walks, to concerts, live theatre, exhibitions, festivals, Te Papa Tongarewa the Museum of New Zealand and more – Wellington has something for everyone.
Stay 2 nights in Wellington.
Explore Wellington with your guide today.
You may like to visit Zealandia, located a 10- minute drive from downtown Wellington. Hidden in a suburban valley, this project aims to return a 225-hectare section of bush to its pre-human state. Take a walk and hear the songs of the flourishing native bird population.
This afternoon you may like to try the visually stunning Makara Peak track, as well as the City to Sea walk where you can experience the best of Wellington’s waterfront. Ride the cable car up the hill to Kelburn for amazing views over the city and enjoy an ice cream at the top.
Travel time Wellington to New Plymouth – 4.5 hours
As a popular tourist destination, New Plymouth is well-known for its black sand surf beaches which offer some of the best surfing in the country. Other attributes include Mount Taranaki and the Egmont National Park, a Mecca for trampers. In contrast with the outdoors lifestyle, New Plymouth also has an artistic side as it is home to the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery, NZ’s only contemporary art museum with a permanent collection.
Stay 2 nights in New Plymouth.
Explore New Plymouth’s beaches, famous walkway and unique city with your tour guide.
The conical shape of Mount Taranaki provides a dramatic backdrop to the city, a constant reminder that the hiking trails of Egmont National Park are just a short drive away. You may also like to stroll along the New Plymouth Coastal Walkway, a 10 km promenade with stunning views. Expect good shopping and an impressive selection of restaurants.
Travel time New Plymouth to Waitomo Caves – 2.5 hours
Venture to the Waitomo Caves, where you will enjoy the Waitomo Glowworm Caves and Ruakuri Caves Combo! Deep underground in the heart of the Waikato
Travel time Waitomo Caves to Hamilton – 1 hour
After your Waitomo Caves adventure journey to Hamilton, New Zealand’s largest inland city, situated on the banks of the Waikato River. Being in the hub of the central North Island, visitors have easy access to iconic attractions such as Waitomo Caves, Raglan’s surf coast and Te Aroha Mineral Pools. For fun – visit the chocolate and candy factory, Hamilton Gardens and the weekly markets. From cafés, art galleries and shopping, through to an
Stay 2 nights in Hamilton.
Relax in Hamilton for the day exploring attractions such as the Raglan’s surf coast, Te Aroha Mineral Pools, the chocolate and candy factory, Hamilton Gardens and the weekly markets with your tour guide.
Enjoy your last night in Hamilton and raise a glass to your fantastic New Zealand Guided Tours!
Travel time Hamilton to Auckland – 1.5 hours
Depart Auckland. Your guide will personally deliver you to the airport ready for your flight.
As we find each traveller is different, each guided tour of New Zealand that we plan and book is different. Our team will work with you to design the perfect itinerary to suit your interests.
Our New Zealand guided tours include all transportation, from airport to airport, as well as the services of your guide throughout your holiday. In addition, we include excellent accommodation plus a range of fantastic activities to help you experience the best of our country.
As you begin planning your New Zealand guided tours, you may wish to explore our NZ Guided Tours brand. We offer a wide range of itineraries of all lengths to serve as inspiration.
Contact New Zealand Travel Organiser today to begin planning your bespoke privately guided tour.
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