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New Zealand North Island April 2020

(14 Posts)
legoqueen Sun 02-Jun-19 09:29:39

Planning a 3 week trip to the North Island next year, hoping to book flights soon. Key purpose is to visit for DF's 80th - haven't been out there for c 15 years & it will be DS age 13's first visit so keen to nail the planning. We will fly in & out of Auckland, assume spend 2-3 days there to sightsee & acclimatise to the time zone etc. Wondered about side trip to Coromandel &/or Rotorua on way to Napier, where DF lives. We are not drivers so all internal travel will be by bus/plane. Would appreciate any tips & itinerary/accommodation suggestions, particularly in Auckland & Rotorua. Assume it will still be reasonably warm in early April. Thanks in advance for any help grin

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missyB1 Sun 02-Jun-19 09:37:17

The trouble is in NZ you do need to drive really. Public transport is quite limited. It’s not so bad for big cities but if you want to go to the coromandel beaches you really need to drive. You could get to Rotorua by bus I think from Auckland (possibly having to change at Hamilton).
Accommodation wise there are loads of options and it’s mostly very good value. I remember the weather being fairly nice on the whole in April, with some quite hot days. We definitely spent Easter on the beach the year we lived there - 2015.

PlatypusPie Sun 02-Jun-19 09:55:47

DD travelled on her own around both islands two years ago by the long distance coaches, the local equivalent of National Express, and it was fine, including exploring the Coramandel.

It was a ‘soft ‘ intro to some post uni travelling ( soft because we have relatives there ) and she didn’t want to spend money on the tour buses aimed at young back backpackers.

She bought a pass from the U.K., and booked her first leg then booked onward travel as she felt like it by phoning a number - only had to delay one day because of lack of space. If you can tie down your plans more, you wouldn’t risk that.

morallybankruptme Sun 02-Jun-19 11:31:46

Be careful if you do any extreme sports. NZ has a terrible safety record. And be wary of the water. They have a lot of issues regarding contamination.

legoqueen Sun 02-Jun-19 12:31:55

Thanks, all useful to know - morally what are the contamination issues?

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morallybankruptme Sun 02-Jun-19 16:14:08

As far as I'm aware it is to do with animal waste and farm waste either being dumped into rivers or leaking into rivers.

rookiemere Sun 02-Jun-19 20:45:56

We were in NZ at Easter - lovely warm weather.
Rotorua was a bit of a surprise- quite tacky and built up , but loads of accommodation options. If you do stay there then try the Gondola dining for lunch or dinner.
There are quite a lot of travel buses in NZ as it's well set up for backpacking. Waiheke Island is a short ferry from Auckland and would totally recommend for a day trip for wine tasting.

ShanghaiDiva Mon 03-Jun-19 01:00:10

I would definitely add in a trip to Waiheke island - short ferry trip from Auckland. If you are going to Rotorua then would also add on Hobbiton.

CakeRattleandRoll Mon 03-Jun-19 09:05:06

Our highlight in the north island was the glow-worm caves. I've travelled a LOT and never seen anything quite like them. You could probably get a day trip from Rotorua.

missyB1 Mon 03-Jun-19 19:09:09

I second Hobbiton and the glow worm caves.

legoqueen Mon 03-Jun-19 20:58:47

Thanks all, Hobbiton is on the agenda & the glo worms look great - it looks as if there is a day trip from Rotorua that takes these both in. I am looking at the Aura hotel in Rotorua - anyone stayed there?

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legoqueen Tue 11-Jun-19 07:24:25

rookie are you able to personally recommend accommodation in Rotorua please - or can anyone else?

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rookiemere Wed 12-Jun-19 11:34:59

Hi OP
Our lodging in Rotorua was fine, Wylie Court. It had a nice outdoor heated pool and price for 2 bedrooms was pretty good, but suspect there are probably nicer places to be had.

If I was doing it again, we wouldn't stay in Rotorua itself. The kiwis call it Rotovegas which gives you an idea what it's like. Wish we'd stayed in Taupo instead or for one night rather than two. However can't remember what age your DCs are, but our DS certainly enjoyed having a pool and I suppose if you're restricted to public transport then it's fine.

legoqueen Wed 12-Jun-19 18:07:19

Thanks rookie - DS will be 14 so keen on the pool idea grin

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