Central North Island

Spread your wings while visiting Rotorua and explore the Central North Island. Choose to venture north, ambling your way through the rolling Waikato and up to the buzzing metropolis of Auckland, or head south towards lakes, volcanoes and vineyards.

You could also take a right-turn heading east and find out what the Bay of Plenty’s beautiful coastline has to offer.

 

 

Auckland

North of Rotorua is Auckland, a 2.5 hour drive away and New Zealand’s biggest city. Jump off the Sky Tower, eat and shop up a storm, have a drink in the Viaduct Harbour or explore one of the many beaches and coastal beauties, all within close proximity to the central city.

 

 

Hamilton & Waikato

Close to Rotorua, Hamilton and Waikato is well known for its underground adventure in Waitomo caves and the rolling hills which became the Shire for the Lord of the Rings trilogy and The Hobbit.

 

 

Hawke's Bay

Follow the southern half of the Thermal Explorer highway through to Taupo, then on to Hawke's Bay, New Zealand's oldest winemaking region. Explore Napier's art deco lined streets. Stop in local towns along the way to get a real taste of Kiwiana.

 

Lake Taupo & Ruapehu

Just one hour drive from Rotorua, Lake Taupo is the largest lake in Australasia with magnificent scenery and landscape, including a view of the dual World Heritage Tongariro National Park in the Ruapehu region. This area has rugged natural beauty with three snow-capped volcanoes perfect for snow sports.

 

Mount Maunganui

One hour drive east from Rotorua is Mount Maunganui, with its white sandy surf beach and harbour. Mount Maunganui is also the name of an extinct volcano which rises above the beautiful beach. Walk around the base, or for more of a challenge, head to the top.  The area has fantastic shopping and delicious cafes.