North Island Explorer

North Island Explorer Tour December 2018
Date: 25 November – 05 December 2018 (11 days)
Start: Auckland, Finish: Auckland Price: From NZ$1,848 per person plus food kitty (NZ$245)
Regular price NZ$1,903 per person – please see below for further information on what is included in the tour.
Tour Description: Absolute fun, cities, sun, surfing, Maori culture, hot pools and awesome beaches. This summer tour offers the best of what the top and central North Island has to offer. It gives tour participants the opportunity to see most of the major attractions and experience a wide range of inclusive and optional extra activities. This tour is a combo of the Northland Escape and the Beaches & Surfing Tour
Deals & Specials: Check out our deals & specialsfor great discounts! On this tour we offer:

  • Early Bird Special: Save $50 if you book this tour before 14 October 2018
  • Online Booking Saver: Save $5 if you book this tour online
  • Bring a Friend Deal: Receive an activity voucher for $25 if you get a friend to book one of our tours

Please contact us with enquiries, bookings or questions.


Everyone arrives at Auckland and after meeting up with the group and getting to know the tour guides, we board our bus and depart the “City of Sails”. We travel north towards the beautiful Bay of Islands. Gorgeous bays, untouched islands and hidden caves are typical scenes in this landscape around Paihia. In the evening we will have dinner at our hostel – a good chance to get to know each other.

In the morning we will visit the Waitangi Treaty Grounds, where we will have a guided tour and watch a cultural performance. For all New Zealanders this is a special place, where in 1840 the Treaty of Waitangi was signed, a document between the Maori tribes and the British crown. In the afternoon you have the opportunity to do great activities. Book a dolphin swim or discover the bay and see the “Hole in the Rock”. You can also join the tour guide on a waterfront walk to the nearby Waitangi Treaty Grounds.

Extra Activity Option:
Dolphin Discovery – NZ$60 (up to 15yrs), NZ$120 (16yrs+)
Discover the Bay Cruise – NZ$90 (up to 15yrs), NZ$152 (16yrs+)
Jetski tour – NZ$160 for 30min (16yrs+), NZ$220 for 60min (16yrs+), 2 people can share 1 jetski
Bay of Islands Combo (Dune Rider & Discover the Bay Cruise) – NZ$156 (up to 15yrs), NZ$250 (16yrs+)

We recommend that you pre-book today’s trip to Cape Reinga. Drive along the famous “Ninety Mile Beach” right up to the most northern tip of New Zealand, where you visit the famous lighthouse. You also have the chance to climb huge sand dunes, boogie boarding down. On the way back you see the famous Kauri trees. For the rest, this is another free day in Paihia to choose one of the extra activities, go swimming, just relax in the sun or, in the afternoon join an excursion by ferry to Russell, a small village with many interesting art and craft shops.

Extra Activity Options:
Dune Rider: Day Trip Cape Reinga via Ninety Mile Beach – NZ$110 (up to 15yrs), NZ$155 (16yrs+)
Waterfall Kayaking (Beginner) – NZ$55 (up to 15yrs), NZ$75 (16 yrs+)
Waterfall Kayaking (little experience required) – NZ$75 (up to 15yrs), NZ$95 (16yrs+)

We head to the beautiful Tutukaka Bay where a number of water activities, like surfing, can be enjoyed. For anyone who does not want to book an extra activity we will spend the morning exploring the beach area of Tutukaka, go for a walk and spend time playing ball games at the beach. In the afternoon we head down to Auckland. In the evening we enjoy a dinner out together.

Extra Activity Option:
Surf Lesson Tutukaka Bay – NZ$75

Today you can experience many attractions and adventure activities on offer. Those who do not book any of the additional activities will go on a tour of the city and explore the famous Auckland waterfront. In the evening our guide will take you for a visit up the Skytower, a truly breathtaking experience with awesome views over Auckland at night.

Extra Activity Options:
Auckland Bridge Bungy – NZ$135 (up to 14yrs), NZ$135 (with student ID), NZ$165 (15yrs+)
Auckland Bridge Climb – NZ$90 (up to 14yrs), NZ$90 (with student ID), NZ$130 (15yrs+)
Auckland Skytower Jump – NZ$175 (up to 15yrs), NZ$225 (16yrs+)
Auckland Skytower Walk – NZ$120 (up to 15yrs), NZ$150 (16yrs+)
Combo: Auckland Bridge Bungy Jump & Bridge Climb) – NZ$ 240
Combo: Auckland Skytower Jump & Walk – NZ$290
Combo: Auckland Skytower Jump & Bridge Bungy – NZ$310
Combo: Auckland Skytower Walk & Bridge Bungy – NZ$250
SEA LIFE Kelly Tarlton’s Aquarium – NZ$27 (up to 15yrs), NZ$30 (with student ID), NZ$39 (16yrs+)
America’s Cup Sailing Experience – NZ$130 (up to 15yrs), NZ$185 (16yrs+)

Today we head to the Coromandel Peninsula. The area called Coromandel is one of quite stunning beaches and bays and very popular as a holiday spot for New Zealanders. It is home to Hot Water Beach, so named because of the hot springs which surface on the sand for two hours either side of low tide. If the tides allow we will take a spade and dig our own hot pool.

Today we enjoy a full day in Coromandel. You can join the tour guide for a walk to Cathedral Cove. You can also improve your surf skills and join another surf lesson. Or would you like to go kayaking? There is something to enjoy for everyone! You have also the opportunity to make your own souvenir at the Bone Carving Workshop.

Extra Activity Options:
Cathedral Cove Sea Kayaking – NZ$75 (up to 15yrs), NZ$115 (16yrs+)
Surf Lesson Hot Water Beach – NZ$75

Today we drive to Rotorua. If you are a fan of Lord of the Rings, you may like to use the day to discover “Hobbiton”, the film set where parts of the movies where made.
In the evening you will have the opportunity to find out more about New Zealand’s indigenous people, the Maori, when we visit a traditional Pa (Maori village). You will hear about their history and learn about their culture. Traditions such as the Powhiri (formal welcome), the Haka (war dance) and a delicious Hangi (traditionally earthcooked Maori feast) will turn this evening into an unforgettable experience.

Extra Activity Options:
Hobbiton Movie Set & Farm Tour – NZ$42 (up to 16yrs), NZ$84 (17yrs+)

After breakfast we will head south to Taupo for a daytrip, but at first we visit Wai-O-Tapu Valley, where you can watch mud pools and the famous Lady Knox Geyser. In Taupo you have the opportunity to join an extra and exciting activity, like a jetboat ride or skydiving. We will also stop to see the famous Huka Falls.

Extra Activity Options:
White Water River Rafting – NZ$139 (16yrs+)
Huka Falls Jetboat – NZ$89 (up to 14 yrs), NZ$135(15yrs+)
Taupo Skydiving – NZ$279 (12,000ft), NZ$359 (15,000ft)

Today our journey leads us to the coastal town, Raglan. This place is known New Zealand-wide for its many surf beaches and awesome waves and it attracts a lot of surfers from all over the world. The conditions are perfect for beginners and for more experienced alike. In the afternoon we will join a surf lesson as a group activity, we will learn some “basics” and try to catch some waves. The surf equipment (wet suit and surf board) will be provided. There is also an option to hire a surfboard and go out in to the water on your own, if you feel already confident in surfing. You will have instructors helping you, if needed. In the evening we have a “Surfer’s Dinner” together.

If you liked the surf lesson yesterday, you get another great opportunity this morning to join a supervised surf board rental and go into the water once again. Alternatively you can use the morning to go for a swim or walk around Raglan. After an exciting eleven days we drive back to the airport in Auckland, where you fly back home.

Extra Activity Options:
Supervised Surfboard Rental Raglan – NZ$50

Included in tour cost

  • Experienced Guides/Assistants
  • Comfortable accommodation at hostels/backpackers
  • All transport during the tour
  • All activities during the tour as described in the tour programme
  • Explore Paihia, Tutukaka Bay, Whangarei & Auckland
  • Waitangi Treaty Grounds
  • Skytower Experience Auckland
  • Surf Lesson Raglan
  • Unique Tamaki Maori Culture evening, incl. Hangi
  • Visit Taupo and Huka Falls
  • Visit Hot Water Beach
  • Tour t-shirt and special group photo

Additional Cost

  • Transport (flights, ferry, transfers) to/from tour start
  • Extra Activities
  • Food Kitty for breakfast and dinner (compulsory): NZ$245
  • Pocket money


  • 15 students minimum required for tour to proceed.
  • Booking conditions apply.
  • All inclusions are weather and time depending.
  • All prices are subject to availability and correct at date of publication (May 2017)
Call Student Tours Call us on 0800 350 010

horseriding at the beach