The Hidden North

21 Day North Island Tour

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The Hidden North

The North Island may well be the most populated of New Zealand’s two major islands, but in no way does that detract from its beauty.

Travel to the northernmost tip of Maui’s legendary catch, or delve deep into the heart of our land at Waitomo. Discover the history of the country’s most beloved cities and places, all the while travelling in comfort at a fantastic price.

Tour Details

Tour The Hidden North
Days 21
Meals Breakfast 20, Lunch 1, Dinner 19
$4,365 Per Person


Tour: The Hidden North
Days: 21
Meals: Breakfast 20, Lunch 1, Dinner 19
$4,365 Per Person

DAY  1 – Palmerston North – New Plymouth D

Eager to get on the road and begin the North Island tour, we wave goodbye to Palmerston North at 8:00am. We travel through         Wanganui and on to Hawera, stopping at Tawhiti Museum, New Zealand’s widely acclaimed, privately owned museum. After lunch we travel around the Surf Highway arriving in New Plymouth at approx 5pm.

DAY 2 – New Plymouth – Forgotten Highway – Hamilton + L + D

Today’s journey continues to be a highlight for the North Island Tour, travelling on SH43. the spectacularly scenic Forgotten Highway. Lunch is provided at Whangamomona Hotel. Completing the Forgotten Highway, our final stop for today is Hamilton arriving approx. 5pm.

DAY 3 – Hamilton – Waitomo Caves – Hamilton D

Free day can be enjoyed wandering around Hamilton or an Optional Excursion to Waitomo Caves. Waitomo Glowworm Caves are a must see for any traveller. Enjoy the world famous boat ride under thousands of magical glowworms and become a part of over 120 years of cultural and natural history. Optional excursion in the afternoon to Zealong Tea Estate, widely regarded as a Waikato icon and New Zealand’s only commercial tea resort.

DAY 4 – Hamilton – Helenville – Whangarei  +  D

Following SH 16 along the West Coast we stop in Helensville for morning tea. At Matakohe we stop for lunch and a visit to one of the country’s most amazing themed museums—The Kauri Museum. We end our day at Whangarei—the gateway of Northland.

DAY 5 – Whangarei – Kawakawa – Paihia B  +  D

This morning we spend time at various attractions in Whangarei. Our lunch stop is at Kawakawa. This quirky township is home to the famous Hundertwasser-designed public toilets. We travel on to Paihia for the opportunity to stay for three nights and enjoy several Optional Excursions.

DAY 6 – Paihia – Waitangi – Return B  +  D

Short trip up the road this morning to Waitangi to visit the historic reserve of the Treaty House, a chance to absorb New Zealand’s history. Afternoon is free or enjoy the Optional Excursion on the Russell Mini tour.

DAY 7 – Paihia B  +  D

Free Day or Optional Excursions.

DAY 8 – Paihia – Kerikeri – Kaitaia B  +  D

We start today with a visit to Haruru Falls. Next stop, the town of Kerikeri, taking time to visit the historical site of the Stone Store. Today you will see a beautiful stretch of northern coastline, sheltered harbours and golden beaches, stopping for lunch at the world famous Mangonui Fish n Chip shop. Choose from a range of fresh seafood, including crayfish, fish and chips or smoked fish. Continuing along this beautiful coastline, our final stop is Kaitaia.

Day 9 – Kaitaia – Cape Reinga – Return B  +  D

Free day or enjoy the Optional Excursion with Harrisons Cape Reinga and 90 Mile Beach Tours, travelling to the top of New Zealand.

Day 10 – Kaitaia – Whangarei – Auckland B  +  D

Travelling down the West Coast on SH1 we head towards the beautiful kauri forest. We visit Rawene, a town on the south side of the Hokianga Harbour. Be prepared for the most impressive kauri known as Tane Mahuta; the sheer size will amaze you. Further along we visit a group of kauri trees known as the Four Sisters. Late lunch today in Dargaville before we head to Auckland for the night.

DAY 11 –  Auckland  – Whitianga B  +  D

This morning we spend a couple of hours touring Auckland’s before heading to the Coromandel. Afternoon optional excursion at Driving Creek Railway before heading through to Whitianga for the next 3 nights

DAY 12 – Whitianga B  +  D

Today is our day to explore the Coromandel Peninsula, renowned for its spectacular views and tranquil townships. We will dabble our feet at Hot Water Beach, visit Catheral Cove and Heihai .

DAY 13 –  Whitianga B  +  D

A day totally free to enjoy this very popular beachside town.

DAY 14 – Whitianga – Waihi – Tauranga – Rotorua B  +  D

Gold fever is today’s theme with a chance to view the open gold pit in the middle of Waihi township, a truly unbelievable sight. Continuing on SH2 we head to our lunch destination in Mount Maunganui. Back on the road, we travel through the kiwifruit capital of Te Puke arriving at our final stop in Rotorua at approx. 4:30pm.

DAY 15 – Rotorua B  +  D

Free Day or Optional Excursions.

DAY 16 – Rotorua – Whakatane – Hicks Bay  B  +  D

Today’s touring follows a string of extraordinarily beautiful lakes as we travel to Whakatane for morning tea then on to Opotiki for lunch. Following SH35, cast your mind back 30 years and enjoy the scenery and lifestyle of the East Cape as we head to Hicks Bay for the night.

DAY 17 – Hicks Bay – Tologa Bay – Gisborne B  +  D

This morning we continue along SH35 and stop in Te Araroa to visit the pohutukawa tree reputed to be the oldest and largest of its kind in New Zealand. Tologa Bay will be our lunch stop with an opportunity to walk the longest wharf in the Southern Hemisphere. The night will be spent in Gisborne.

DAY 18 – Gisborne B

Free day to enjoy at your leisure.

DAY 19 – Gisborne – Napier D

Heading down the East Coast into Hawkes Bay today, we will see vineyards, orchards and a significant number of Art Deco buildings. We arrive to enjoy two nights in Napier.

DAY 20 – Napier B  +  D

Insightful tour of Hawkes Bay, Art Deco, Te Mata Peak and optional wine tastings

DAY 21 – Napier – Palmerston North B

On the home stretch today, we lunch in Dannevirke, travelling over the Saddle road we stop to visit the Te Apiti wind farm—be amazed by the height and size of these mighty wind turbines. Brimming with memories, we conclude our tour at approx. 4pm in Palmerston North.



  • All coach travel
  • Accommodation (max 2 share, upgrades available)
  • All dinners, 2 course or buffet
  • All breakfasts
  • Good quality hotel accommodation
  • Expert and friendly tour manager with local knowledge
  • Tour Commentary
  • Plus many surprise stops on the way.
  • Upgrade your accommodation to a private room
  • Many exciting optional excursions, contact us for the list
  • Car Storage  – Palmerston North
  • Book accommodation before and after your tour

All accommodation is selected for comfort, convenience and value for money. If you require accommodation before and after the tour in Palmerston North, please contact the Unique Holiday Tours office. All rooms twin share with private facilities.


New Plymouth The Devon Hotel 1 night
Hamilton Ibis Hotel Hamilton 2 nights
Whangarei Distinction Hotel 1 night
Paihia Kingsgate Auto Lodge 3 nights
Kaitaia Orana Motor Inn 2 nights
Auckland Copthorne Hotel 1 night
Whitianga Beachside Resort 3 nights
Rotorua Millennium Hotel 2 nights
Hicks Bay Hicks Bay Motel 1 night
Gisborne Quality Hotel 2 nights
Napier Te Pania Scenic Hotel 2 nights


North Island Tour Map

North Island Coach Tour North Island Coach Tour
Northland Tour Northland Tour
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