16 days in North Island Itinerary

16 days in North Island Itinerary

Created using Inspirock North Island vacation planner

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Route & dates

16 days in North Island Itinerary

Start: Sydney
Fly:  6​h 15​min
1
Wellington
— 1 night
Fly + Taxi:  4​h 15​min
2
Tongariro National Park
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h
3
Rotorua
— 4 nights
Drive:  2​h
4
Waitomo Caves
— 2 nights
Drive:  3​h 15​min
5
Hot Water Beach
— 1 night
Drive:  5​h
6
Paihia
— 4 nights
Fly:  7​h 45​min
End: Sydney

1
night
Wellington

Wellington
Wellington, the world's southernmost capital city and New Zealand's second most populous urban area, combines the nation's rugged history and nature with its modern and cosmopolitan present.
Plan my Wellington trip by asking Inpirock to come up with tips and suggestions.

Sydney, Australia to Wellington is an approximately 6.5-hour flight. The time zone difference moving from Australian Eastern Standard Time (New South Wales) to New Zealand Standard Time is 2 hours. Traveling from Sydney in October, things will get slightly colder in Wellington: highs are around 19°C and lows about 11°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 1st (Fri) early enough to go by car to Tongariro National Park.

Things to do in Wellington

Parks Wildlife Museums
Find places to stay Oct 31 — Nov 1:
Highlights from your plan
Wellington Cable Car ©
Wellington Cable Car
ZEALANDIA Sanctuary ©
ZEALANDIA Sanctuary

3
nights
Tongariro National Park

Tongariro National Park ©
Tongariro National Park has a long history of preserving New Zealand's pristine alpine landscape.
Get outdoors at Tongariro Alpine Crossing and Taranaki Falls. Horsemtrails and Tongariro Northern Circuit are good opportunities to explore the local culture. There's more to do: explore the wealth of natural beauty at Te Porere Redoubt and tour the pleasant surroundings at Whakapapa Nature Walk.

Quickly create a custom-made itinerary for Tongariro National Park using our trip planner.

You can drive from Wellington to Tongariro National Park in 4.5 hours. Other options are to take a bus; or do a combination of train and taxi. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 4th (Mon) to allow time to drive to Rotorua.

Things to do in Tongariro National Park

Outdoors Parks Trails
Find places to stay Nov 1 — 4:
Highlights from your plan
Tongariro Alpine Crossing ©
Tongariro Alpine Crossing
Horsemtrails ©
Horsemtrails
Tongariro Northern Circuit ©
Tongariro Northern Circuit

4
nights
Rotorua

Rotorua ©
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.
Satisfy your inner culture vulture at Volcanic Hills Winery and Tukairangi Gallery. Step out of the city life by going to Rainbow Springs Nature Park and Kinloch Beach. Get out of town with these interesting Rotorua side-trips: Taupo (Fishing Charters & Tours & Huka Falls Walkway). Next up on the itinerary: take in the natural beauty of Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland, explore and take pictures at Te Puia, steep yourself in history at Ohinemutu, and identify plant and animal life at Paradise Valley Springs Wildlife Park.

To find maps, other places to visit, reviews, and more tourist information, use the Rotorua tour itinerary planner.

Traveling by car from Tongariro National Park to Rotorua takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and bus; or do a combination of car and bus. In November, daily temperatures in Rotorua can reach 23°C, while at night they dip to 15°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 8th (Fri) so you can drive to Waitomo Caves.

Things to do in Rotorua

Parks Wildlife Nature

Side Trip

Taupo
Find places to stay Nov 4 — 8:
Highlights from your plan
Rainbow Springs Nature Park ©
Rainbow Springs Nature Park
Huka Falls Walkway ©
Huka Falls Walkway
Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland ©
Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland

2
nights
Waitomo Caves

Waitomo Caves ©
Head deep beneath the surface of the earth at Waitomo Caves, a village and cave system that draws both extreme sports enthusiasts and those wanting something a little more relaxed.
On the 9th (Sat), trek along Ruakuri Walk, then relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour, then Head underground at Ruakuri Cave, and finally Head underground at Waitomo Glowworm Caves. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 10th (Sun): explore the fascinating underground world of Footwhistle Glowworm Cave, Head underground at Caveworld, then head outdoors with Waitomo Clay Birds, then admire the sheer force of Marokopa Falls Walk, and finally take in the views from Mangapohue Natural Bridge Walk.

Plan trip to Waitomo Caves with our itinerary maker to find out where to go and what to do.

Traveling by car from Rotorua to Waitomo Caves takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Cap off your sightseeing on the 10th (Sun) early enough to travel to Hot Water Beach.

Things to do in Waitomo Caves

Parks Nature Outdoors
Find places to stay Nov 8 — 10:
Highlights from your plan
Waitomo Glowworm Caves ©
Waitomo Glowworm Caves
River Rafting & Tubing
Ruakuri Walk ©
Ruakuri Walk

1
night
Hot Water Beach

Hot Water Beach ©
Named after the geothermal springs that supply the coast with pleasantly warm water ideal for swimming and soaking, Hot Water Beach attracts hundreds of thousands of tourists every year.
Start off your visit on the 11th (Mon): browse the exhibits of Moko Artspace and then enjoy the sand and surf at Hot Water Beach.

To find more things to do, traveler tips, ratings, and tourist information, go to the Hot Water Beach trip planner .

You can drive from Waitomo Caves to Hot Water Beach in 3.5 hours. In November, daily temperatures in Hot Water Beach can reach 22°C, while at night they dip to 15°C. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 11th (Mon) to allow time for travel to Paihia.

Things to do in Hot Water Beach

Outdoors Nature Beaches
Find places to stay Nov 10 — 11:
Highlights from your plan
Hot Water Beach ©
Hot Water Beach
Moko Artspace ©
Moko Artspace

4
nights
Paihia

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.
Escape the urban bustle at Nature & Wildlife Tours and Paihia Harbour. Venture out of the city with trips to Puketi Nature Trail (in Kerikeri), Taupo Bay (in Taupo) and Poor Knights Island Marine Reserve (in Whangarei). There's much more to do: admire the natural beauty at Waitangi Treaty Grounds, relax and rejuvenate at some of the best spas, tee off at Waitangi Golf Club, and go for a walk through Opua Forest Lookout Track.

To see maps, where to stay, more things to do, and more tourist information, use the Paihia trip planner .

Drive from Hot Water Beach to Paihia in 5.5 hours. Finish your sightseeing early on the 15th (Fri) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Paihia

Wildlife Outdoors Parks

Side Trips

Poor Knights Island Marine Reserve, Taupo Bay Beach, Puketi Nature Trail
Find places to stay Nov 11 — 15:
Highlights from your plan
Waitangi Treaty Grounds ©
Waitangi Treaty Grounds
Scuba & Snorkeling
Nature & Wildlife Tours

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