Day 1 Auckland - Bay of Islands (2 Nights)
As this trip departs from the Cordis Auckland at 7.30am, accommodation will need to be pre-booked for the previous night. Leave Auckland this morning, travelling north over the Harbour Bridge past the sprawling suburbs of the city's North Shore. Your scenic drive continues through Northland's lush farmland before arriving in the beautiful Bay of Islands. Explore the place where Maori and British culture merged in the 18th century and see the beauty that lies within a network of 144 islands which dot the bay with their beautiful golden beaches. Wake up to the sound of gentle waves, a cool sea breeze and the smell of the ocean over the next few days. But for now, discover the stories, people and events that shaped the past, present and future of Aotearoa New Zealand at the Waitangi Treaty Grounds. During your guided tour with a 'Local Specialist', you'll view the world's largest ceremonial war canoe, the historic Treaty House and carved Meeting House. Stand on the spot where New Zealand's founding document, the Treaty of Waitangi, was signed in 1840. Visit the Carving Studio, where you'll meet the carvers and learn about the Maori art of whakairo (wood carving). Then there's free time to explore Te Kongahu Museum of Waitangi. Stay overnight in the jewel of the Bay of Islands, renowned for its secluded bays, mild weather and warm café culture. This evening, gather with your Travel Director and travelling companions for a Welcome Reception and dinner.
Day 2 Bay of Islands Free Time
Indulge in a free day to soak up the enchanting beauty of the Bay of Islands. The allure of the great outdoors and array of experiences will be impossible to resist, and you'll want to skip a leisurely start to your day and head out on your own adventure. Consider an Optional Experience on the water, where the soul-stirring views never end as you cruise through the game-fishing waters to Cape Brett and, weather permitting, through the famous 'Hole in the Rock' and into New Zealand's largest sea cave. Your return cruise to Paihia slices through the turquoise waters of the bay. Pass deserted beaches and and secluded bays while you keep your eyes peeled for dolphins, seals and penguins which find sanctuary in this pristine tropical setting. Or perhaps you would prefer to savour the bold flavours of the region's full-bodied reds when you embark on a memorable wine tasting tour with stunning coastal views. You could consider instead a Russell Mini Tour to learn about the area's historical significance, taking a walk back in time to discover its wild ways as a noisy port town refuelling ships. Evidence of its colourful heritage can be seen in the historic buildings that remain to this day. You'll explore two centuries of what was once regarded as the 'Hell Hole of the Pacific' and has today emerged as an idyllic tourism hotspot - how times have changed! After an action-packed day, you'll enjoy an evening at leisure to spend as you wish. Make the most of your stay and head to one of the restaurants along the waterfront, watching as the sun sets on yet another glorious day in New Zealand. (Breakfast)
Day 3 Bay of Islands - Depart Auckland
There's no need to rush this morning. You can get your final fix of paradise before returning to Auckland. Take a stroll on the beach to set the right tone for your day and enjoy a leisurely coffee watching this serene seaside haven come to life. Our scenic journey south stops in Whangarei, the northernmost city in New Zealand, where there's time to admire local art and stroll along the marina in the Town Basin. Learn about the stories and legends of the people of the land, their special connection to nature and how they once ruled Aotearoa, the land of the long white cloud. Later, enjoy a drive through the Rodney District before arriving in Auckland, where your memorable encounter with New Zealand's Bay of Islands comes to an end. (Breakfast)
Feel free amidst the exquisite natural splendour of New Zealand's beautiful Bay of Islands. The stunning views of turquoise seas and golden beaches will linger long after you've returned home.
First class travel Highlights
Audio Headsets for flexible sightseeing
Daily breakfast and an average of 50% of evening meals
Luxury air-conditioned coach with WiFi in most countries or alternative transportation (such as rail journeys)
Cherry-picked hotels all tried and trusted
Optional Experiences and free time
All porterage and local charges included
Must-see sightseeing and surprise extras
An expert Travel Director and separate Driver, Driver Guide only on Mini-Stays
All hotel tips, charges and local taxes
Airport transfers on the first and last day of your guided holiday
VIP entry to many sights
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The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines.