Spend a day relaxing in the city of sails and then take 3 days to visit the North Islands most cultural attractions. Take a walk through geothermal activity and the volcanic areas, visit our famous Glow worm Caves in Waitomo, see a sheep farm show and get an inside about our agricultural background. Experience today’s way of life and meet local people, and dine at a traditional Hangi dinner while learning about our Maori culture. .
Private guided tour itinerary - 3 nights
Day 1: Auckland arrival (Day free to explore the city)
Day 2: Auckland - Bay of Plenty/Rotorua (Agrodome, Rainbow Springs, Mitai Maori Show and Hangi)
Day 3: Rotorua - Taupo (Waimangu and lake cruise at Lake Rotomahana, jet boat to Huka Falls)
Day 4: Taupo - Waitomo Caves - Auckland (Glow-worms and caves tour)
Prices: We recommend the following guidelines for customized tour packages, excluding international flights:
4* (3* internationally) to 5*: From around NZ$ $400 - $1150+ per person per day. The customized package will include accommodation, airport transfers and other transportation within New Zealand, guided tours or activities, unique experiences, trip planning, and 24X7 support during your trip. Please enquire for a custom quote. The price is customized based on final accommodation choices, travel dates, and other custom preferences.
Day 1: Auckland arrival (Private airport transfer, Day free to explore the city)
You will be met on arrival at Auckland International Airport by your Aroha NZ Tours Representative, and transferred to your accommodation in our luxurious vehicle. Here you can spend the day in the inner city and near the America’s Cup Village and visit the nearby Viaduct Basin and its many lively bars and restaurants. Walk onto Queen Street and explore the new Britomart, a vibrant shopping, entertainment and business precinct in the heart of down-town Auckland. Surrounded by beautiful heritage buildings, it’s a neighbourhood of buzzing restaurants and bars, world-class fashion boutiques and interesting art spaces. Recommended: (Optional) Whale and Dolphin Safari: Travel aboard Dolphin Explorer into the expansive Hauraki Gulf Marine Park on Auckland's Whale and Dolphin Safari from Viaduct Harbour. There is a 75% success rate of seeing whales and 90% for dolphins. The Hauraki Gulf Marine Park is a biologically and geographically diverse maritime national park. Over 25 of the 37 southern hemisphere marine mammals have been identified in this marine park, making up almost a third of the world’s population of species. Accommodation: Auckland City
Day 2: Auckland - Bay of Plenty/Rotorua (Agrodome, Rainbow Springs, Mitai Maori Show & Hangi dinner)
Driving distance 2,5h
Start of private guided tour! As you depart Auckland your tour will take you through the Bay of Plenty region. An area with a consistent mild climate level which is ideal for farming and it's also famous for fruit crops and vineyards. Your tour arrives in the geothermal capital of Rotorua. First join others at the world famous Agrodome Sheep show. During the show the audience will see nineteen different sheep breeds introduced onto the stage, the art of sheep shearing, sheepdog demonstrations, cow milking, lambs bottle feeding and an exciting sheep auction. In the early afternoon visit Rainbow springs park and the Kiwi Encounter. Kiwi Encounter offers a unique behind-the-scenes tour of a working Kiwi nursery and hatchery. Eggs are brought here from the wild and when they have hatched, and the Kiwis are large enough to protect themselves from predators, they are released back into the wild. In the evening “Mitai” will give you an authentic introduction to Maori culture leaving you amazed and in awe. Be enthralled by the natural bush setting, see warriors in traditional dress, paddle an ancient warrior canoe (waka) down the Wai-o-whiro stream, and don’t miss your only opportunity in the Rotorua area to see glow worms in their natural habitat. Marvel at the crystal clear water full of eels and trout, flowing directly from the earth at the sacred Fairy Spring. See your traditionally cooked hangi meal being lifted from the ground. During the cultural performance, you’ll learn about our past, carvings and ta moko (tattoo art). Be captivated by the displays of weaponry and combat, coupled with the grace and beauty of the poi dance. You’ll be amazed by the spine tingling haka finale. The Mitai family is proud to have created a sacred and spiritual place that offers you an indigenous cultural experience like no other. Recommended: (Optional) Visit the Hobbiton Movie Set: Discover the real Middle-earth on the most picturesque private farmland near Matamata, where you can visit the Hobbiton Movie Set from the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings films in a fascinating two-hour guided tour. The set has been completely rebuilt and will remain as it was seen in the films. 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. As the set is located on a real farm, the ½ hour Sheep Farm Experience is also included in the tour. Accommodation: Rotorua
Day 3: Rotorua - Taupo (Waimangu and lake cruise at Lake Rotomahana, Jet boat to Huka Falls)
Driving distance 1h
In the morning visit the Waimangu's volcanic area with the steaming landscape and other fascinating geothermal features as you follow our crater walkways. A protected scenic reserve and wildlife refuge, Waimangu Volcanic Valley geothermal park encompasses beautiful Lake Rotomahana and is set in pristine New Zealand bush. Enjoy a boat cruise on Lake Rotomahana. This beautiful lake has its own separate geothermal system, with the amazing thermal activity that can only be seen from the vessel during your boat cruise. One of New Zealand’s most beautiful, unspoilt, natural wilderness areas, the lake and surrounding land are protected from development. The 1886 Mt Tarawera eruption changed Lake Rotomahana dramatically, exploding it to 20 times its size. The lake now covers approximately 15 coalescing craters formed during the eruption. 15 years after that massive eruption, the lake reached its current height and is now the deepest in New Zealand's North Island. Lake Rotomahana is the newest of all New Zealand’s larger, naturally formed lakes – protected as a wildlife refuge, it’s home to large numbers of birds all year round. Afterwards we drive to the edges of the township of Lake Taupo with the largest Lake in this country. Lake Taupo is also the world’s largest volcanic crater, created in one giant explosion. The ash cloud floated all over the world - ice samples from as far apart as Antarctica and Alaska have determined the explosion to have occurred in 186AD. The effects of the ash were even recorded in China and Rome. You can gather your own free volcanic souvenir from the shoreline in the form of very light pumice stones (great for cleaning off rough skin) which were spewed out in that eruption. Just about everywhere you look in the Lake Taupo region, you'll see a volcano. In the afternoon stop at the Huka Falls - these spectacular falls roar through a 15m wide chasm before plunging a further 11m. Here experience a 30 minute thrilling jet boat ride. Combine 360° spins and passing nature incredibly close at disorientating speeds for an amazing must-do visitor experience, before even reaching the awe inspiring majesty that is the Huka Falls. From the unique vantage point on the jet boat you have the best water level view of Huka Falls – New Zealand’s most visited natural attraction. Accommodation: Taupo
Day 4: Taupo - Waitomo Caves - Auckland (Glow-worms and caves tour)
Driving distance 3,5h
As you depart Taupo your tour will take you through the Waikato region, one of New Zealand's greenest places, and richest agricultural regions. You will pass land with lush grass for raising cattle, thoroughbred horses and vast stands of exotic timber. One of the major attractions of the Waikato/King Country region is the famous Waitomo Caves (translation: 'where the water disappears into a hole in the ground'). Enjoy a short shuttle ride to the cave while your experienced guide reveals the rich history of Waitomo. Then, take a short walk through breath taking New Zealand native bush to the cave entrance. There, your guide lights the candles setting the scene for an intimate cave experience, where you will see glow-worms and cave formations up close and appreciate the beauty of Footwhistle Cave (also known to local Maori as Te Anaroa Cave). . The guide tells the stories of the insect life that live here - titiwai, the glow worm, the extinct Moa and tuna, the eel. After enjoying a relaxed stroll through the cave, you'll be seated in Footwhistle's Cathedral to see it lit up by a dazzling magnesium torch. Although the display only lasts a few seconds, your memories of the Footwhistle Cave will last a lifetime. We then drive back to Auckland. End of private tour! Optional - Blackwater Rafting or Tubing Experience: We can book for you a cave tubing experience. Drift through the beautiful cave on an inner tyre tube and float under the most amazing displays of glow-worms! Jump off a waterfall, ZOOM down a hydro slide and for those of you who are keen to get their 'cave crawl on' - crawl up to a hidden waterfall which for many is the highlight of their trip...Or Hairy Feet Hobbit Film Location: Visit the stunning farm location at Mangaotaki Rocks Piopio, near Waitomo, where the troll and campfire scenes in "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" were filmed. Towering limestone cliffs, massive rock formations and a primeval forest on the Denize family farm became the location for Staddle Farm and Trollshaws... and the home of "Sting"!