20 days in North Island Itinerary

20 days in North Island Itinerary

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Route & dates

20 days in North Island Itinerary

Start: Perth
Fly:  11​h 15​min
1
Wellington
— 3 nights
Fly:  3​h 30​min
2
Napier
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h 45​min
3
Tongariro National Park
— 3 nights
Drive:  1​h 45​min
4
Taupo
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h
5
Hamilton
— 3 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
6
Auckland
— 4 nights
Fly:  10​h
End: Perth

3
nights
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.
Explore hidden gems such as Space Place at Carter Observatory and Scorching Bay. Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa and Cobblestones Museum are good opportunities to explore the local culture. Venture out of the city with trips to C'est Cheese (in Featherston), Nga Manu Nature Reserve (in Waikanae) and Southward Car Museum (in Paraparaumu). There's lots more to do: take a peaceful walk through Otari-Wilton's Bush Native Botanic Garden, stroll the grounds of Bolton Street Cemetery, make a trip to Cape Palliser Lighthouse, and trek along Catchpool Loop Walk.

Plan a Wellington trip in moments using our itinerary builder.

Perth, Australia to Wellington is an approximately 11.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight, taxi, and train. The time zone changes from Australian Western Standard Time (AWST) to New Zealand Standard Time (NZST), which is usually a 4 hour difference. When traveling from Perth in January, plan for cooler days and about the same nights in Wellington: temperatures range from 24°C by day to 17°C at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 15th (Wed) so you can travel to Napier.

Things to do in Wellington

Museums Parks Outdoors

Side Trips

Cape Palliser Lighthouse, Catchpool Loop Walk, Cobblestones Museum, Nga Manu Nature Reserve, Southward Car Museum
Find places to stay Jan 11 — 15:
Highlights from your plan

3
nights
Napier

Enjoy the atmosphere and architecture of 1930s design in Napier, one of the best-preserved Art Deco cities in the world.
Start off your visit on the 16th (Thu): hike along Puketapu Loop - Hawke's Bay Trails and then let the river carry you with a rafting and tubing tour. Here are some ideas for day two: examine the collection at Faraday Centre, do a tasting at Moana Park Winery, pause for some serene contemplation at Waiapu Anglican Cathedral, Napier, New Zealand, then admire the landmark architecture of Daily Telegraph Builing, and finally look for all kinds of wild species at Gannet Colony.

Discover how to plan a Napier trip in just a few steps with Inspirock's itinerary builder.

Traveling by flight from Wellington to Napier takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 18th (Sat) so you can go by car to Tongariro National Park.

Things to do in Napier

Outdoors Parks Tours

Side Trip

Gannet Colony
Find places to stay Jan 15 — 18:
Highlights from your plan
River Rafting & Tubing
Gannet Colony ©
Gannet Colony
Moana Park Winery ©
Moana Park Winery

3
nights
Tongariro National Park

Tongariro National Park ©
Tongariro National Park has a long history of preserving New Zealand's pristine alpine landscape.
Step off the beaten path and head to National Army Museum and Ohakune Carrot Adventure Park. Get some cultural insight at Mount Ruapehu and Taranaki Falls. On the 15th (Wed), hike the day away at Tongariro Alpine Crossing. Next up on the itinerary: explore the landscape on two wheels at Ohakune Old Coach Road, admire the sheer force of Mangawhero Falls, explore the wealth of natural beauty at Te Porere Redoubt, and trek along Whakapapa Nature Walk.

To find maps, photos, reviews, and tourist information, read Tongariro National Park holiday planner.

You can drive from Wellington to Tongariro National Park in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or do a combination of train and taxi. Finish your sightseeing early on the 17th (Fri) so you can drive to Taupo.

Things to do in Tongariro National Park

Parks Outdoors Trails

Side Trips

National Army Museum, Ohakune Carrot Adventure Park
Find places to stay Jan 18 — 21:
Highlights from your plan
Tongariro Alpine Crossing ©
Tongariro Alpine Crossing
National Army Museum ©
National Army Museum
Mount Ruapehu ©
Mount Ruapehu

2
nights
Taupo

Taupo ©
The resort town of Taupo lies on the banks of Lake Taupo, the largest body of water in the whole of Australasia.
On the 21st (Tue), examine the collection at Taupo Museum, then browse the exhibits of L'Arte, then contemplate the geological forces at Waimangu Volcanic Valley, and finally take in the natural beauty of Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland. Here are some ideas for day two: explore the striking landscape at Spa Thermal Park and Riverbank Recreational and Scenic Reserve, admire the sheer force of Huka Falls Walkway, then push the limits with an extreme tour, and finally contemplate the waterfront views at Great Lake Taupo.

For photos, other places to visit, and tourist information, refer to the Taupo trip builder tool .

Getting from Tongariro National Park to Taupo by car takes about 2 hours. Other options: do a combination of car and shuttle; or do a combination of car and bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 23rd (Thu) to allow enough time to drive to Hamilton.

Things to do in Taupo

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trips

Waimangu Volcanic Valley, Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland
Find places to stay Jan 21 — 23:
Highlights from your plan
Waimangu Volcanic Valley ©
Waimangu Volcanic Valley
Huka Falls Walkway ©
Huka Falls Walkway
Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland ©
Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland

3
nights
Hamilton

Hamilton ©
On the banks of the Waikato River lies Hamilton, a pretty, active city on North Island.
Your cultural itinerary includes sights like Classics Museum and Waikato Museum. Escape the urban bustle at Caveworld and Mangapohue Natural Bridge Walk. Venture out of the city with trips to Aranui Cave (in Otorohanga), Waitomo Caves (Marokopa Falls Walk, Waitomo Glowworm Caves, & more) and Te Awamutu Space Centre (in Kihikihi). And it doesn't end there: learn about wildlife with up-close encounters at Hamilton Zoo, experience rural life at Ruakura Berry Farm, pause for some serene contemplation at Hamilton New Zealand Temple, and admire the natural beauty at Taitua Arboretum.

To see more things to do, other places to visit, traveler tips, and tourist information, read Hamilton online travel planner .

Getting from Taupo to Hamilton by car takes about 2 hours. Other options: take a bus. Cap off your sightseeing on the 26th (Sun) early enough to go by car to Auckland.

Things to do in Hamilton

Parks Nature Museums

Side Trips

Waitomo Caves, Te Awamutu Space Centre, Aranui Cave
Find places to stay Jan 23 — 26:
Highlights from your plan
Ruakuri Walk ©
Ruakuri Walk
Caveworld ©
Caveworld
Marakopa Falls ©
Marakopa Falls

4
nights
Auckland

The largest and most populous city in New Zealand, Auckland combines a rich history and thriving contemporary culture in an abundance of museums, art galleries, and performance venues.
Bring the kids along to Orewa Beach and Horse Riding Warkworth. Get outdoors at Muriwai Gannet Colony and Brick Bay Sculpture Trail. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Auckland: Stockade Hill (in Howick), Kitekite Falls (in Piha) and Orewa – Te Ara Tahuna Estuary Cycleway (in Orewa). And it doesn't end there: paddle through the water with a kayaking and canoeing tour, relax in the rural setting at Sweet Red Strawberries, brush up on your military savvy at Auckland War Memorial Museum, and visit a coastal fixture at Manukau Heads Lighthouse.

To see traveler tips, reviews, other places to visit, and tourist information, go to the Auckland vacation maker tool .

Traveling by car from Hamilton to Auckland takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or take a train. In January, plan for daily highs up to 22°C, and evening lows to 22°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 30th (Thu) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Auckland

Parks Outdoors Trails

Side Trips

Orewa, Stockade Hill, Muriwai Gannet Colony, Horse Riding Warkworth, Brick Bay Sculpture Trail
Find places to stay Jan 26 — 30:
Highlights from your plan
Kayaking & Canoeing
Muriwai Gannet Colony ©
Muriwai Gannet Colony
Orewa Beach ©
Orewa Beach

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