OKay, here's the deal.........my friend and I will be arriving in New Zealand near the end of June. I will be there for a year but he, on the other hand, only has about 8 to 9 days with me before he has to get back home to work. Now, since we plan on flying into Auckland, I think we're just gonna have time to explore the north island. We've looked into flights that would arrive on the south island but they are more pricey. Well, at least right now, they are.
Anyways, I know that during the winter time, the south island is way more popular but what about the north island??? What's there to do there during that time??? I think we'll be renting a car and driving down to Wellington but what to do on the way is up in the air so advice would be great!!! Thanx!!!
There's lots to do in the North Island, even in winter. The weather is pretty mild especially in Northland. You could go from Auckland to the Bay of Islands then on to Cape Reinga. On the way south, you could stop in Rotorua, Taupo, try skiing at Whakapapa, try some wine in the Wairarapa and finally end up in Wellington.
Hey, that doesn't sound too bad at all!!! I would love to do a wine tour. I completely forgot about that. I heard that you can still go swimming at the Bay of Islands during winter time. Is that true??? And how long does it take to get from Auckland to Cape Reigna??? And what's the average temperature during that time???
Thanks for the tips!!!
Well, it will depend how brave you are to see if you can swim in the Bay of Islands. The average maximum temperature in Northland is between 10 and 16 C. It's pleasant but not hot.
It's about a 6 hour drive from Auckland to Cape Reinga. There are a few bus companies that run trips up there if you aren't keen to drive it.
if you have time, head to the east coast of the north island and do a trip to white island - it's an active volcano and its amazing - one of the best things i did in NZ. the gateway to white island is a town called whakatane, and you'll need to book your tour in advance.
for cape reinga and the bay of islands i did 3 day/2 night tour with magic bus which i would recommend.
if your friend's time frame is your main reason for not doing the south island, check out pacificblue.com for cheap flights between auckland and christchurch, as i would recommend the south island over the north. the north is great too though!
If you are keen to go for a swim why not tryout the wide range of thermal springs there is a huge range from large commercial places to small wild springs that require a bit of a trek to reach. Look out for the guidebook "Hot Springs of New Zealand" by Sally Jackson available at most larger bookshops when you get here. I would be inclined to do some research and focus in on one area rather than trying to do the whole north island in 8-9 days. There are vineyards in the Auckland, and hawkes bay areas in the north island.
Have fun and enjoy your stay
Wow, another thing that I never thought of. That's a pretty good idea. And aren't they supposed to be good for you??? And if I remember correctly, aren't there some in the Rotorua area??? I'll definately bring that idea up to my friend. Thanx, groverkiwi!!!
Rotorua's a good general tourist-attraction kind of place. Its got the geothermal activity, its home of the Zorb, its good for Maori culture experiences etc etc. Hawkes Bay is a nice area, great for vineyard tours and wine tastings Auckland is good for city-slickers, and of course has the Sky Tower (which you can even jump off if you're the adventurous type!!), and Wellington is good for arty types and a bit of culture. I actually live in the South Island, so these are just my overviews of the places I know well in the North Island!!