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October – March
Monday to Friday: 08:00 – 17:30 (AEST)
Saturday: 08:00 – 15:00 (AEST)


April – September
Monday to Friday: 08:30 – 17:30 (AEST)
Saturday: 09:00-15:00 (AEST)

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9 Day Central North Island

Self-Drive Tour - New Zealand
Image: Hobbiton Movie Set, Waikato, New Zealand
ANZCRO / 9 Day Central North Island

9 Day Central North Island

$1,452

per person

Are you searching for an inspired getaway brimming with intriguing tours, natural wonders, a dash of history, a splash of wine, and a dollop of Lord of the Rings lore?

Our Central North Island self-drive trip will take you from Auckland to Napier and destinations in-between, serving up all the above and more – tickle your tastebuds with the Half-Day Wine Tour, test your movie knowledge in Hobbiton, and have a close encounter with a volcano! Do something different this holiday.

Call us on to talk to one of our New Zealand Experts

Tour Inclusions

The following are included in your package tour:

9 days Group C car rental with Hitch Rentals

White Island tour

Half-day wine tour

8 nights 3-star hotel/motel accommodation

Art Deco guided walk

Full-day nature and coastal tour

Hobbiton movie set tour

Conditions: Prices are per person, twin/double-share and subject to availability. Prices are correct at the time of submission (Oct 17) but are subject to change without notice. Valid for travel 1 Oct 17 to 30 Sep 18. Blackout periods and surcharges may apply. Car hire excess fee of NZ$2,500 + GST applies. This will be imprinted on a credit card upon collecting the vehicle. Excess reduction options are available at an additional cost per day. There are no airport fees as the depots are located offsite from the airport. An airport shuttle transfer service is available to take you to the depot during office hours. Vehicles must all be taken on the ferry when crossing between North and South Island (additional charge will apply). Car parking fees may apply in some locations.

Click here for our full terms and conditions.

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Day 1: Arrive Auckland and drive to Whangamata, 165km (2 hrs 35 mins)

Haere mai, New Zealand’s North Island is ready and waiting. Pick up your rental car at the Auckland airport depot and see a little of the city before driving onto Whanagmata, a gorgeous town on the edge of the Coromandel Peninsula.
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Day 2: At Whangamata

Stretch your legs and prepare your senses for what’s to come – the Coromandel Peninsula embraces life, light and lots of fun on this photogenic tour of the region's natural heritage. Regularly described as a genuine paradise, you’ll explore semi-tropical rainforests, run your fingers across kauri bark, and enter glowworm caves, listening to the history that makes this region truly magical. Swap natural must-sees for coastal views, trekking white sand beaches surrounded by magnificent cliffs and offshore islands.
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Day 3: Whangamata to Whakatane, 180km (2 hrs 30 mins)

Pack the car and continue your journey of Te Ika-a-Maui (North Island) with a scenic drive along the east coast, arriving at Whakatane, a lovely little town in the Bay of Plenty region.
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Day 4: At Whakatane

Start your explosive day with a hearty breakfast, before setting out on a six-hour tour of New Zealand’s star marine volcano, White Island. This accessible live volcano is situated 49km off the coast, delivering geothermal features aplenty with steaming vents, bubbling pits, volcanic streams, and a truly cool lake of steaming acid. The tour is restricted to the crater complex, as most of the volcano is underneath the ocean like a big pyroclastic iceberg. Dig into a delicious lunch provided by the tour leaders and spot marine life from the boat, as dolphins play chase with the current and seabirds fly overhead.
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Day 5: Whakatane to Napier, 300km (3 hrs 40 mins)

On the road again! Settle in for a drive from coast to coast, swapping the quiet delights of Whakatane for the Art Deco details of Napier, the coastal city of the Hawke’s Bay region. Upon arrival, check into your hotel and stretch your legs.
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Day 6: At Napier

Rested and ready for more, avail yourself to the spirited resurgence of a once destroyed city, as residents scrambled to rebuild in just 22 months following a devastating earthquake in 1931. The Art Deco Walk celebrates the passion and commitment of Napier’s ancestors, as Art Deco, Spanish Mission and Stripped Classical architecture and design features line the city streets and continue the city’s legacy, marking the transition from the old (before the quake) to the new (after the quake).
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Day 7: Napier to Taupo, 145km (2 hrs)

Today takes you back to Taupo for a decadent Half-Day Wine Tour. Drink in the striking surroundings as your lips savour every sip of this lovely wine country. The singular conditions and fertile, volcanic soil inspire viticulture greatness, as award-winning drops come out of both Taupo and Turangi.
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Day 8: Taupo to Hamilton (via Matamata), 180km (2 hrs 15 mins)

Journey into Middle Earth and join Frodo and Sam in The Shire. The Hobbiton Movie Set Tour is an easy crowd favourite, delivering equal parts fun, facts, stories, and insights into how filming changed this once quiet sheep and cattle farm. You’ll be invited to take a tour of the still intact set, highlighting special hobbit holes, Bilbo’s home in Bag End, and a certain tree. Finish up at the Green Dragon, the perfect place for a mug of cider following a carefree day on the greens. Continue onto Hamilton.
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Day 9: Hamilton to Auckland, 125km (2 hrs)

Following a well-earned breakfast in Hamilton, the time has come to complete the last leg of your journey, collecting a few last-minute memories before returning your rental car to the airport depot and boarding your onward flight.

Tour Route

Click on the days below to follow the tour route.

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