Do you want to go on an epic journey and make some amazing memories? If you want to spend your vacation in a land that has the most beautiful nature in all its shapes – mountains covered with snow, breathtakingly beautiful glaciers, proud volcanoes, amazing beaches, fields of flowers and so much more – then your perfect destination is New Zealand. Put on Bilbo Baggins’s shoes and go on an adventure!
Driving around is the best way to take in the beauty of the Kiwi Land. There are so many roads to take and you should decide which one will be yours based on the time you have.
From Auckland to Wellington
If you are a fan of the Lord of the Rings trilogy, then the road trip from Auckland to Wellington is an absolute must for you. As you cross the territory of the North Island, you are in for some spectacular sights. Waitomo will enable you to explore caves from a boat. Travel east from Hamilton to Matamata and soon you will arrive in Hobbiton, i.e. the Shire where the hobbits dwell.
On your way to Taupo, make sure to stop and admire the breathtakingly beautiful Huka Falls. Lake Taupo is the biggest one in New Zealand – just perfect for indulging in some water activities. Go for rafting or paddleboard and kayak rides. Once you are dry, hop back into the car and head towards Shannon where you should visit Owlcatraz Wildlife Park. Go further south and you will reach Kapiti Island. Don’t be surprised if you encounter some endangered animals over there because that is exactly where they still exist! And, finally, rest in Wellington, New Zealand’s capital city where you can enjoy numerous cafes, shops, visit Te Papa Museum and cycle around Oriental Bay.
From Auckland to the Coromandel Peninsula
If you need to isolate yourself and just get lost in the beautiful nature, then you definitely need to take the road from Auckland to the Coromandel Peninsula. Instead of traveling with tourists on a bus, explore this part of New Zealand as a true Kiwi – by car, ute, or van. You can easily get an Avis car rental and hit the road. Roll down your windows and sing together with your family as you drive across lovely landscapes with no people or other cars in sight.
Your first stop should be Thames, a historic town located just an hour-and-a-half drive from Auckland. There, you can see the ancient tree Kauri and feel the excitement of gold-mining days. Go to the shops and get some supplies for your trip. Thames Museum will tell you amazing stories about Maori times, first pioneers and let you discover the history of mining, logging, shipping and railways. Before you leave, don’t forget to visit Dickson Holiday Park, home to hundreds of exotic butterflies!
After you leave Thames, you will drive a bit more than an hour and then you will arrive at Hot Beach, a place where you can feel all the joys of spa treatments. Thanks to the geothermal activity underground, water from the ocean warms up to an unbelievable 60 degrees! Dig your own Jacuzzi in the sand and relax before you go to visit Cathedral Cove, a location that fascinated movie makers so much that they decided to make it a set for The Chronicles of Narnia! Don’t leave Coromandel before trying the delicious Manuka honey in numerous shops beside the road.
From Auckland to Cape Reinga
If you go north of Auckland, you should visit Paihia, a town that is a gateway to the Bay of Islands, i.e. a little piece of paradise made up of 144 islands. There, you can swim with dolphins, go sailing and see the world-famous Hole in the Rock. Take a ferry boat and go to the Russell. Wherever you go in this part of the Kiwi land, all you have to do is to swim, soak up the warm sun and relax.
On your way to Cape Reinga, you can explore the ancient Kauri forests, listen to the singing of exotic birds and admire Rainbow Falls that are 27 meters high. End your journey in Cape Reinga where the Tasman Sea kisses the Pacific Ocean and have a picnic on a 90-mile long sandy beach. Every time you go on a road trip across New Zealand, it is certain that you are in for an amazing trip. This world is full of beauty and you are on your way to enjoy it.