Stride climate

Trip Type : Small Group Tour
New Zealand North Island Explorer Northbound tour
Abel Tasman National Park Auckland New Zealand North Island Explorer Northbound Trip
Christchurch Nelson New Zealand North Island Explorer Northbound Trip

New Zealand North Island Explorer Northbound

Intrepid Travel Preferred
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
4.7 . Excellent
98%
Travel Style: You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level: Regular walking or cycling over moderately long, hilly, or bumpy distances. Some public transport or utility vehicles such as safari jeeps. Moderate
Lodging Level: Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
12 days
From: $ 3,120 $ 260 / day
Checking price

Overview

Highlights

  • Discover the breathtaking Bay of Islands
  • Observe Waitomo's mysterious glow worms
  • See Rotorua's geysers
  • Visit the spectacular Huka Falls
  • Be inspired and captivated by the majesty of Mt Ruapehu
  • Explore Te Papa Museum
  • Bushwalk in Abel Tasman National Park
  • Spot sperm whales and dolphins in Kaikoura

Short Description

Explore New Zealand's northern heartland, from the secluded beaches of the coast to the volcanic craters of the central plateau, on this North Island Explorer trip. Adventure activities abound here – why not go sea kayaking or snorkelling on a Bay of Islands adventure cruise, underground black-water rafting in Waitomo, bungee jumping and jet boating at Taupo or mountain biking and kayaking in Nelson. Whatever your interest, this small group adventure offers the perfect combination of incredible sights and thrilling activities.

Small groups are usually defined as between 10 and 24 travelers, often less. If you're the kind of person who enjoys more intimate experiences and personal service this is a good choice. All else being equal you will pay a premium for this style vs a larger group tour.
Trip Type Small Group Tour
Spend most of the time outdoors. Common trip themes and activities include cycling, hiking, kayaking, whitewater rafting.
Itinerary Focus Active
Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Lodging Level Value - 3 star
Flights & Transport N/A
Start City Christchurch
End City Auckland
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Itinerary

Day 1 Christchurch

Kia-ora! Welcome to New Zealand. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6.00PM on Day 1. Please look for a note in the hotel lobby or ask the hotel reception where it will take place. If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time, you may wish to arrive a day early so you're able to attend. We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability). If you're going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We'll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so please ensure you have all these details to provide to your leader. Soak up the atmosphere, a city that Lonely Planet described as "re-emerging as one of New Zealand's most exciting". With a whole new range of pop up cafe's, restaurants and bars, Christchurch has hit the ground running. Its a great chance to spend a dew days exploring this resilient city. With the CBD closed down, visit the 'Re:Start' development on the fringe of the CBD, a shopping and entertainment area of shipping containers, boasting great coffee, shopping and food.

Day 2 Kaikoura

We depart Christchurch around 7.30 in the morning and we head up the beautiful coastline to Kaikoura where many adventures await us. Take a boat trip out to see the whales. Experience being close to some of the largest creatures in the world. For those who wish there are plane or helicopter flights to view the whales (whale watching activities are subject to weather conditions). Kaikoura is famous for its seafood and marine life with much to see and do. Notes: Total driving time is around three hours (approximately 160kms).

Day 3 Nelson

Today our destination is Nelson, in the heart of the wine producing area and the Abel Tasman National Park. It is a very pleasant sunny place and home to some of the most beautiful sea kayaking in the world. We spend the afternoon exploring the town. We have a huge variety of activities to choose from including kayaking, boating, sailing in the Abel Tasman National Park, mountain biking or just relaxing in town or on the beach. Nelson is very picturesque and is a delight to visit. Notes: Total driving time is around four hours (approximately 240kms).

Day 4 Nelson

Today you can visit the Abel Tasman National Park. Bushwalking tracks among these gorgeous inlets and coves are just begging to be explored and the boat ride in Water Taxi is spectacular.

Day 5 Wellington

We cross to the north island on the inter island ferry and enjoy the fantastic scenery of the Marlborough Sound. We arrive in the afternoon and have a great opportunity for a night out in the capital city. Notes: Total driving time is around two hours (approximately 130kms).

Day 6 Mt Ruapehu

We leave Wellington after visiting the fantastic Te Papa museum. We head through the central North Island plains towards the great volcanoes & Mount Ruapehu National Park. There are several options during our time here. Many will want to hike the famous Tongariro Crossing track. A good day hike which is known as the best of its kind in New Zealand. This hike has spectacular views of the volcanic plateau and the lakes. Those who do not go on the hike can explore the beautiful local area. Notes: Total driving time is around four and a half hours (approximately 330kms).

Day 7 Mt Ruapehu

Today you have the option of walking the Tongariro crossing. This is a full day hike and people should have a decent level of fitness. It is considered NZ´s best one day hike and has fantastic views. For those not doing the hike there are lower altitude bush walks available from the Motel.

Day 8 Taupo - Rotorua

We head to Taupo, just one hour away which is widely acknowledged as the North Island's home of extreme sports. On the way we visit the spectacular Huka Falls. Here you can bungy-jump or ride in a jet boat, as well as do many other activities. Or how about just relaxing by the shores of the largest lake in New Zealand? The sights are fantastic and this will be one of your highlights. We visit the Whakarewarewa, site of the Maori Arts and Crafts Institute and thermal area in Rotorua. See geysers and boiling mud pools in an amazing display of the power of nature. There is an option for a Maori Hangi dinner and concert. Notes: Total driving time is around two and a half hours (approximately 180kms).

Day 9 Rotorua

Today you have the chance to explore Rotorua and all its surroundings. There is alot to do in this busy adventure town. This all happens at Te Puia, site of the New Zealand Arts and Crafts Institute. The geysers here erupt regularly, and the Maori guides will show you around, explaining the significance of this land to their ancestors. You can view a rare Kiwi bird at Paradise Springs and learn more about New Zealand's great efforts to conserve them. Before you leave Rotorua, consider going zip-lining through the nearby virgin native forest. It's a great chance to not only get some thrills from up high out in nature, but learn the ins and outs of local efforts to save the Kiwi bird.

Day 10 Rotorua - Bay of Islands

We leave Rotorua and drive north through fantastic scenery towards New Zealand's winterless north. There are beautiful beaches and unspoiled places to explore. The next day we have a host of available activities including kayaking, a boat trip to the islands or just relaxing Visit the village of Russell for a look into NZ´s past. Notes: Total driving time is around six and a half hours (approximately 420kms).

Day 11 Bay of Islands

The Bay of Islands is one of New Zealand’s top holiday destinations. 144 islands in total, this boating paradise enjoys a sub-tropical climate. Today we have a host of available activities including kayaking, a boat trip to the islands or just relaxing. In the afternoon you will be able to enjoy the views of the area whilst enjoying some local food on a lunchtime harbour cruise. We also encourage a visit the village of Russell for a look into NZ´s interesting past.

Day 12 Auckland

We make our way back South passing unspoiled beaches and lush forests. There are native trees of massive size that are over 1000 years old. This area has always been prized for its fantastic native hardwood timbers that are fortunately protected nowadays. Crossing the Auckland Harbour Bridge, with a spectacular view of the "City of Sails", we arrive in Auckland to say our fond farewells. Our trip finishes on arrival to Auckland at approx 6PM. Please take this into consideration when booking any onward flights. Notes: Total driving time is around four hours (approximately 225kms).

Availability

Checking price
Price From $ 3,120
Price Per Day: $ 260 per day
Check Availability
Checking price
Start DateFinish DateBase PriceDeparture GuaranteedAvailability 
Nov-08-2019Nov-19-2019$ 3,120Yes10 spots left Reserve
Dec-03-2019Dec-14-2019$ 3,120Yes11 spots left Reserve
Dec-27-2019Jan-07-2020$ 3,486Yes10 spots left Reserve
Jan-21-2020Feb-01-2020$ 3,120Yes11 spots left Reserve
Feb-14-2020Feb-25-2020$ 3,120Yes12 spots left Reserve
Mar-10-2020Mar-21-2020$ 3,120Yes13 spots left Reserve
Apr-03-2020Apr-14-2020$ 3,535Yes9 spots left Reserve
Nov-07-2020Nov-18-2020$ 3,535Yes15 spots left Reserve
Dec-02-2020Dec-13-2020$ 3,535Yes15 spots left Reserve
Dec-26-2020Jan-06-2021$ 3,535Yes15 spots left Reserve
Jan-20-2021Jan-31-2021$ 3,535No15 spots left Reserve
Feb-13-2021Feb-24-2021$ 3,535No15 spots left Reserve
Mar-10-2021Mar-21-2021$ 3,535No15 spots left Reserve
Apr-03-2021Apr-14-2021$ 3,535No15 spots left Reserve
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Stride Featured in

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3,182 Intrepid Travel Travel Reviews & Ratings

98%
4.7 out of 5 (100+ reviews)
Excellent 2,376
Great 625
Average 101
Disappointing 37
Terrible 38
Value
4.7
Guide
4.7
Activities
4.7
Lodging
4.7
Transportation
4.7
Meals
4.7

New Zealand North Island Explorer Northbound

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Company Reviews

Fantastic Trip in Southern Africa

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging4.0
Transportation4.0
Meals5.0
We did this trip, Explore Southern Africa, from Aug 9 - 26 this year and we thought it was probably our most memorable trip ever. The variety of wildlife (we saw the big 5 plus giraffes, zebras, cheetahs, hippos, hyenas, wildebeests, impalas, baboons, ...) and our proximity to them that we experienced was unparalleled. The scenery was like nothing we had ever experienced before (our first time anywhere in Africa). Although it was winter time there when we went and many areas were looking very dry it was an experience not to be missed. Additionally we were made to feel welcome everywhere that we went. The highlights of the trip for us would be the two days to the Okavango Delta, the optional game drive through Chobe National Park and day 13 with our guide tracking rhinos in Matabos and going to the African village. Our tour leader, cook and drivers were excellent as were our co-travellers. The meals that were prepared for us tasted great, were well balanced and no one ever left hungry. The 2 person tent accommodations weren't the most luxurious but they allowed one to stay right in the "middle of the action" with the animals in close proximity to our overnight homes. This being the case, we never felt unsafe in our tents at any point. The overlander vehicle didn't have air conditioning, as is standard, however if you made sure to open windows for air circulation during the drive the heat wasn't so bad. If one is prepared to put up with these few inconveniences and willing to help out with camp set up, vehicle clean up, and meal clean up afterwards (this is a participatory type of trip where certain tasks are required of the travellers) it is an experience not to be missed. It all makes one more appreciative of the luxuries that we have at home that many do not have in South Africa, Botswana and Zimbabwe.
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Only excellent value for money and memories to last a lifetime.

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Faultless service and incredible trips, at a really good price. Plus they are all really nice peeps, by email or phone, and we need more of that in the world.

So far, and still counting, I've used them for:

Alaska
Tanzania
Kenya
Uganda
Northern India
Lombok
Bali
Russia
Mongolia
China
Nepal

Never had a bad experience, only excellent value for money and memories to last a lifetime.
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The Trip from Hell Avoid Intrepid Travel

2.0
Details
Value1.0
Guide1.0
Activities5.0
Lodging3.0
Transportation1.0
Meals3.0
The Trip from Hell
Avoid Intrepid Travel!
My daughter and I recently returned from a tour in Central Asia booked through Intrepid Travel. After about 24 hours of travel, we were not met at the airport nor did we have a room. After getting that straightened out, the next morning we were informed that the vehicle we would be traveling in had no air conditioning. The temperatures were over 100 degrees to about 115 degrees or more. The heat was unbearable and no one inquired about how we were coping or their health. Our welfare was ignored. So ww left the tour early so we wouldn’t have to camp in the desert for two nights.
The tour leader booked our flights to Istanbul but neglected to tell us we would have to rebook our flights to Los Angeles. Upon arriving at the airport in Istanbul, we were told we couldn’t get on the flight. New tickets cost us $1800 EACH!
Intrepid Travel has refused to take responsibility or provide any satisfaction in this matter.
BEWARE!
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It was an incredible experience!

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
We just wrapped up a Tanzania family safari. It was an incredible experience!

Even the cook made sure my picky teenager would like his breakfast by fixing him his scrambled eggs the way he likes them.

I’ve been dreaming of this trip with my son for a long time and I’m glad I booked it with you guys! We’ll cherish the memories we made for ever

If you’re looking for a real adventure kinda trip then go with Intrepid!

Thank you Thank you Thank you
Johan & Maxime
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Perfect Itinerary, Guide spoiled a lot of the trip

4.0
Details
Value4.0
Guide2.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals4.0
The perfect itinerary allowed us to efficiently visited all the top sites with great lodgings. Unfortunately, the guide cut short stops at the Bahai Gardens, Acco, Tel Aviv, and Jerrico on days when we got to our hotel room in the early afternoon--all group members were upset by this. This Palestinian Christian guide emphasized unimpressive churches and minimized all sights that were secular, Muslim, Jewish, ancient, or other faiths. He made bizarre strident political comments about how great Mao Zedong was, praised Putin, said Palestinian people "had never done anything wrong in their history," talked about the Jews killing Jesus--all with a lot of anger. He knew a lot of about Christinaity, not much about anything else. He did a lot to make what could have been the perfect trip, mediocre.

(I would recommend the trip, but only if I knew it was a different guide.)
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I loved the history of this trip

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
I loved the history of this trip, as well as the spectacular scenery. Our guide was knowledgeable and helpful. Having arrangements made for places to stay and transport, plus some activities, but with plenty of free time, made for a perfect balance for me. Breakfasts were delicious!
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Details

Group Size:

Small Group - 24 max

Maximum Number of People in Group: 15

Accomodations

Lodge (11 nts)

Guides

All Intrepid group trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders. In New Zealand your group leader is also your driver, taking you from start to finish in a coaster vehicle. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Our crew are chosen for their driving skills, their knowledge of the country, their personality, and of course their leadership abilities. We also use local guides where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting - we think it's the best of both worlds.

Additional Information:

Finish point

  • Kiwi International Hotel
  • 411 Queen Street
  • Auckland
  • NEW ZEALAND
  • Phone: 09 3796487
  • Fax: 09 3796496

Trip ID#:

intrepid-PTOAU

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