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Northern Light North Island Tour

Northern Light North Island Tour

  • Auckland
  • Wellington
  • 5 days
  • 4.8 / 5.0 (56 reviews)
  • from NZD$1,395.00

Main Highlights

  • NZ cycle trail
  • Tongariro Alpine Crossing
  • Rotorua
  • Wellington
  • Kayaking
  • White water rafting
  • Te Papa Museum
  • Excellent bike rides
  • Thermal pools
  • Accommodation by coasts, mountains & lakes
  • ..and many more

Northern Light North Island Tour - Overview:


If your journey begins in Auckland and you want to head south towards Wellington then jump on to our action packed 5 day Northern Light Tour! Discover the best of New Zealand’s Northern hot spots and the remarkable contrasting northern landscapes on this quick thermal blast! In less than a week you'll get to see some amazing destinations, enjoy fantastic hikes (including the world renowned Tongariro Crossing), and visit the unique Hot Water Beach where you'll dig and then relax in your own thermal pool. If 5 days is all you have, then this is the perfect way to cruise the central and lower North Island with plenty of beach action included!


The Northern Light trip is a 5 day trip that will see you leave Auckland and head south to Wellington, taking the best cultural and scenic experiences of the Central North Island.


If you have extra time available after your trip why not extend with one of these great options:

Summer Blast Tour - Departing from Picton or Christchurch, the Summer Blast is one of our favourites, taking in the best of the South Island. From the golden sand beaches of the Abel Tasman to the deep waters of Fiordland, experience some of the finest natural wonders in the World.

Southern Light Tour - This trip takes you to a huge range of natural wonders from glaciers and mountains to beautiful beaches and wild coastlines. Starting in either Picton or Christchurch we enjoy the highlights of the South and wrap things up in the adrenalin capital - Queenstown!


This trip takes in many of the best activity options available in the North plus some excellent free options. We have carefully constructed each tour so you can pick and choose the things you love to fill your day. Options include passive sightseeing to adrenaline junkie adventures - but always know that there's never any pressure to participate so whether you enjoy mud pools & museums or bungy & skydive you are guaranteed to enjoy some once in a lifetime experiences. Here are just a few of the things that you will find included in your Northern Light Tour:

- Accommodation: Your accommodation in our carefully selected campsites is included in a shared tent, two people per tent. If you want your own space you can upgrade to a single tent for a small additional cost.

- Food: Tasty healthy meals are all part of the package; see which meals are included on the day to day itinerary. If you have a specific dietary requirement, no problem we cater for most diets.

- Wai-o-tapu Thermal Area: Thousands of years in the making, Wai-O-Tapu is a wonderland of stunning geothermal activity. Explore spectacular nature at New Zealand's most colourful volcanic area.

- Hikes: We offer daily walk options including Redwoods Forest and the roaring Huka Falls but the most stand out is the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, heralded as the best one-day trek available in New Zealand, while others say it ranks among the top ten single-day treks in the world.

- Bike Rides: From mountain bike trails to scenic riverside tracks, if you have hired one of our bikes you won’t be disappointed as you cycle your way through the most scenic regions of the trip.


While there are always optional activities for you to do if you choose there are also heaps of free options. We take in many of these on the Northern Light tour including access to Tongariro National Park, Te Papa museum, Wellington Botanical Gardens, heaps of free hikes, amazing sunrises and sunsets and more.

Our activities page above gives more detail on many of the free and optional activities that you might choose to do on your Northern Light Tour and how it all works while you are out there adventuring!

Our bike rides page and the hiking pages will also give you lots more details into the rides and hikes our guides will show you along the way. We include printed maps and route notes for any of the hikes and rides you might want to do.


Please visit our How It Works page for everything you need to know.

  1. We leave Auckland at 8am and drive south towards the Coromandel Peninsula. The Coromandel is a popular holiday spot for us Kiwi’s and it's not hard to see why. With stunning white sandy beaches, dense fern forests and a rich history of both Maori and European settlement, the Coromandel Peninsula is the perfect place to start your trip!

    After a lunch stop in the seaside town of Tairua, we'll travel to Hahei Beach - the gateway to Cathedral Cove. You can either walk along the coastline or get stuck in to the first optional activity on your trip with one of the best sea kayak options in the country. Cathedral Cove has a stunning limestone archway that featured as the gateway to Narnia in the movie 'Prince Caspian' and is a great place take a dip in the turquoise waters of the Pacific Ocean before heading back to Hahei and on to camp at another iconic location, Hot Water Beach. Our campground is a short walk away from the beach where, at low tide, you can grab a shovel and head down to dig your very own hot pool in the sand! This is all thanks to a unique geothermal reservoir of hot water under the sand, what a way to round off your first day on tour!

    • Meals: Dinner
    • Bike Rides: 8km road cycling
    • Walks and Hikes: Stunning coastal walk with views over the Pacific – distances vary
    • Optional Activities: Sea Kayaking, Hahei Explorer
    • Available Upgrades: Yes
    • Drive Distance: Approx 3 hours
  2. After breakfast we'll start our journey towards the central area of the North Island but before that, we'll explore a little more of the Coromandel Peninsula. We'll drive down to the historic gold mining town of Waihi and take a look at the huge 'Martha's Mine', a working gold mine! Afterwards, the cyclists among us will have the chance to ride a section of the Hauraki Rail Trail and the rest of us will head to the Karangahake Gorge for an historic walk. We'll look through the ‘windows of the past’ of mining history and see some pretty spectacular landscapes along the way. When everyone is back together we’ll enjoy a picnic lunch in the gorge before continuing on to Rotorua.

    There are heaps of optional activities in Rotorua including a zipline eco tour, zorbing, luging or relaxing in a thermal spa. If you'd prefer to explore the natural geothermal features of the area, there's plenty of world famous bike trails and walks in the area too. In the evening, we recommend immersing yourself in Maori culture at the Mitai Maori Village where you'll learn about Maori culture, experience an equally stunning and terrifying Haka and feast on a traditional Hangi meal.

    There’s a lot to pack into one day but we promise it’ll leave you wanting more!

    • Meals: Breakfast and Lunch
    • Bike Rides: Peddle through subtropical forest, mining heritage and don’t forget your headlamp for the tunnels and bridges (trail ride)! In the afternoon, ride through Rotorua to a world class Mountain Bike Forest
    • Walks and Hikes: Enjoy an awesome little walk through Coromandel lush forest and explore early mining history through caves, tunnels and a pretty beautiful waterfall to complete a great walk!
    • Optional Activities: Mitai Maori Village, Zorb, Luge, hot pools, Zipline Canopy Tour
    • Available Upgrades: Yes
    • Drive Distance: Approx 3-4 hours
  3. We begin the day with a short drive to visit some of the North Island's most impressive geothermal sites. We'll see bubbling mud pools, a huge Geyser and then take some time to explore the Wai o Tapu Geothermal Wonderland, home to an impressive array of multi coloured rock formations and pools created by superheated water bringing minerals to the surface creating this otherworldly landscape.

    Our next stop on the way into Taupo is the mighty Huka Falls, an impressive waterfall found along the Waikato river. This is also our drop off point for those wanting to go white water rafting or skydiving! If you’re not doing these activities there's a great walk or a bike ride into the city along the river's edge - be sure  to stop off at the natural hot spring along the way or get an adrenaline buzz from the Taupo bungy which is conveniently located on your way into town. You’ll have some time in Taupo to grab some lunch and check out New Zealand’s largest lake, Lake Taupo, before we make our way to camp later that afternoon.

    • Meals: Breakfast and Dinner
    • Bike Rides: Ride an awesome single track from Huka Falls stopping in for a quick soak in a natural hot stream on your way into Taupo or grab the bike in the city for a cruisey ride around the edge of the lake.
    • Walks and Hikes: Follow the trail from an iconic waterfall alongside the mighty Waikato River winding past a natural hot spring that you can soak in followed by walking past a bungy jump watching adrenaline junkies dive into the river!
    • Optional Activities: Skydiving, bungy, giant swing, Te Puia - Te Ra Guided Experience
    • Available Upgrades: Yes
    • Drive Distance: Approx. 2 hours
  4. Voted one of the best day hikes in the world, today's 19.4km walk takes in some of New Zealand’s most impressive and diverse landscapes. The challenging Tongariro Alpine Crossing hike covers a small section of the country’s oldest national park and dual UNESCO world heritage area, the Tongariro National Park. On a fine day you’ll be able to see Mt Ruapehu, the North Island's highest peak which stands at a towering 2797 metres. You'll also be able to see Mt Ngauruhoe, which featured in Lord of the Rings as Mount Doom.

    If you'd prefer not to do this hike, there's cycle options or a walk along the Tongariro river where you'll have a beautiful mountainous backdrop. When everyone is back together after the hike we'll start making our way to our camp, situated along the Kapiti Coast.

    • Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
    • Bike Rides: If you’re not doing the Tongariro Crossing, leave camp on a bike and head towards to the Tongariro River Trail. Cycle this loop, over bridges and past huts or a trout centre, keep an eye out for trout fishermen as this is the capital for trout fishing!
    • Walks and Hikes: The best one day hike in New Zealand! Traverse the Tongariro, steam vents, crater lakes and more!
    • Optional Activities: Tongariro Alpine Crossing
    • Available Upgrades: Yes
    • Drive Distance: Approx. 4 hours
  5. This morning it's a short drive to Wellington, New Zealand’s capital city where your tour ends. We'll arrive before 9am and you can spend your day exploring the Te Papa Museum, Weta Workshop and the Botanical Gardens. The capital is also home to the Beehive, our government building, as well as great shopping areas and a thriving café culture to explore - Wellington is renowned for serving NZ's best cup of coffee.

    • Meals: Breakfast
    • Bike Rides: n/a
    • Walks and Hikes: n/a
    • Available Upgrades: n/a
    • Drive Distance: Approx. 1 hour


Tour Price 2023


Tour Price 2023/24 (New Season)


Bike Hire


Single Tent Upgrade


Bring your own Bike


Sleeping Bag Hire







MARCH 2023





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Trip Reviews

  • Traveling on my own this has meant, I have not been overwhelmed by the amount of activities there is to do, having a guide to help navigate has been a well needed part of my trip, both Nick and Chrissie have been amazing. I will definitely be joining you again.

    , travelled Northern Light North Island Tour on 07/11/2019

  • I had great 5 days! Sad to leave...

    , travelled Northern Light North Island Tour on 07/11/2019

  • Brooke and Aaron were very patient, enthusiastic and helpful throughout the trip. I would travel with Flying Kiwi again. More than a hop-on hop-off experience. :) fun!!!

    , travelled Northern Light North Island Tour on 07/11/2020

  • It was a wonderful experience. I only did a short trip to get an introduction to New Zealand beauty and culture, but I would definitely look into Flying Kiwi to explore more of this beautiful country in the future.

    , travelled Northern Light North Island Tour on 23/10/2019

  • Enjoyable! Thank you from an Aussie man who loves meeting people and exploring new places. Lea is really knowledgeable. Robbie-John is an exceptional host/driver and a true blue NZ. It's irreplaceable!

    , travelled Northern Light North Island Tour on 01/11/2018