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Kiwi places - quirky stories: Travel the scenic side roads of the North Island


up to Oct 15

1 person – get $200 credit towards flights or balance
2 people – save $620 when booking twin share

Get your free info pack

The quintessential kiwi personality is alive and flourishing in the tiny places and quiet corners of New Zealand. There are tea shops where coffee could be instant and the beat of the economy continues to be on the back of a sheep or milk pail (churn). You will pass through places where locals outnumber visitors and the town might only have a permanent population of 300 people. There is a fierce pride in the story of places, their origins and the landscapes creating unique moments in the holiday experience.

5 days
4 nights

Trip Overview

To indulge

  • Shared dinner with welcome talk by professional historian / guide
  • Heritage vineyard (Mission Estate) where hospitality is embraced (lunch)

To inspire

  • Stonehenge Aotearoa where polynesian star compass is revealed
  • Waipukara forest of memories,contemplative scenic reserve
  • Pukaha National Wildlife Centre
  • Trelinnoe Woodland Park




To browse

  • Carterton a look at wool
  • Greytown Victorian streetscape boutique shops
  • Half day exploring Napier’s heritage quarter, art galleries and boutique stores

To enjoy

  • Featherston Museum dedicated to a single locomotive engine
  • Tui’s historic brewery & gift shop
  • Waipawa’s settlers museum with 19th century parlour
  • Eketahuna’s streetscape, 3D art mural and quirky shops
  • Ongaonga the village that stood still
Start Wellington
Finish Taupo
Start Wellington
Finish Taupo
  • 4 nights accommodation (Copthorne Hotel, Scenic Hotel, Fergusson’s Lodge)
  • Daily breakfast & dinner*
  • Entry Fee of The Wool Shed National Museum, Pukaha National Wildlife Reserve, Featherston Military Camp (Fell Locomotive Museum), Stonehenge Aotearoa, TUI Brewery Visit and Tasting, Central Hawkes Bay Museum, CHB Municipal Theatre, Tasting and Tour, Trelinnoe Park
  • Commentaries provided by your experienced escort, drivers and local guides
  • Comfortable air-conditioned coaches with panoramic windows
  • Door to door transfer included*
  • Airfare to and from tour departure/arrival
  • Travel/health insurance (highly recommended, please contact us for a quote)
  • Entry visa if needed
  • Accommodation not as listed in the itinerary
  • Sightseeing / activities not listed in the itinerary
  • Meals not listed in the itinerary
  • Personal expenses such as room service, internet charge, laundry, drink, fax, telephone call, optional activities, etc
  • Gratuities, tips to guides, drivers, bellboys, etc.
  • Optional day tours during free time
Special offers, T&Cs

Get your free info pack

If you want to check available dates, special prices for couples & families or get your free info pack - send us an enquiry now
Get a free info pack


Travel the side roads of New Zealand through the lower North Island

Day 1

Wellington - Masterton: Quirky Towns, Heritage Sites, Observatory


Highlights of the day

  • Featherston Military Camp
  • Fell Locomotive Museum
  • Stonehenge Aotearoa
  • Greytown Victorian heritage main street
  • Carterton a look at wool
  • Evening Talk

Featherston has a museum dedicated to a single locomotive engine that transversed the Rimutaka incline as well as a solemn message about the loss of dignity in wartime with the tale of Japanese prisoners of war interred in Featherston.

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Stops & extensions
Day 2

Masterton - Waipukurau: Hidden Gems and Forgotten Places of New Zealand

@Pūkaha National Wildlife Centre
@Pūkaha National Wildlife Centre

Highlights of the day

  • Queen Elizabeth Park Masterton
  • The Wool Shed National Museum
  • Pukaha National Wildlife Centre
  • Pahiatua Marae
  • TUI Brewery Visit
  • Dannevirke
  • Ormondville Station

The back of the sheep and the industry that supported one of New Zealand major agribusiness achievements is heralded in the Wool Shed.

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Stops & extensions
Day 3

Waipukurau - Napier: Exclusive Winery Estate Lunch, Memorials, History

Hawkes Bay, New Zealand @limerockwines
Hawkes Bay @limerockwines

Highlights of the day

  • Forest of Memories
  • Central Hawkes Bay Museum
  • CHB Municipal Theatre
  • Exclusive Winery Lunch, Tasting and Tour

It is a very special moment when we introduce visitors to the concept of the forest of memories. Instead of memorial plaques in a cemetery, living trees foster comfort for grieving family and friends.

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Stops & extensions
Day 4

Napier - Hot Spots of Hawke’s Bay


Highlights of the day

  • Otatara Pa
  • Te Mata Peak
  • Bluff Hill
  • Napier Art Deco Walking Tour

Napier is a highlight for this tour with its art deco pastel beauty. There are numerous photo opportunities in and around heritage Napier. The significant presence of Maori occupation reaching back into the mists of time is present with Otatara a part of the day’s experiences.

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Stops & extensions
Day 5

Napier - Taupo: Waterfalls, Museums, Cathedral

Waipunga Falls, New Zealand @captures_by_chris
Waipunga Falls @captures_by_chris

Highlights of the day

  • MTG Hawke’s Bay
  • National Aquarium
  • Waiapu Cathedral
  • Trelinnoe Park
  • Waipunga Falls

The high passes of the Napier Taupo highway have hidden delights from a subalpine arboretum with its mature trees and rhododendrons to waterfalls a short easy walk from the car park.

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Stops & extensions

Dates and Prices

20% deposit will secure a place on this trip. All deposits are transferable to other dates or tours. 100% COVID RISK FREE GUARANTEE

Kiwi places, quirky stories
16 – 20.10.2021
  • Adult 2255 NZD
  • Child 1295 NZD
  • Special price for 2 people 3890 NZD
  • Single Suplement 795 NZD
Check availability
Kiwi places, quirky stories
May 2022
  • Adult 2255 NZD
  • Child 1295 NZD
  • Special price for 2 people 3890 NZD
  • Single Suplement 795 NZD
Check availability
Kiwi places, quirky stories
July 2022
  • Adult 2255 NZD
  • Child 1295 NZD
  • Special price for 2 people 3890 NZD
  • Single Suplement 795 NZD
Check availability
Frequently asked questions
Do you have age restrictions for your tours?

Travelers must be at least 18 years-of-age to travel unaccompanied by an adult. We recommend that children be at least 12 years of age. Our tours are heavy on “adult things” (art, history, architecture, etc.) that kids often find boring. Our tours allow flexibility, so squeezing in activities for younger children is possible but can still be overwhelming.

Do I need to pay the single supplement?

The accommodation on our tours is based on twin share. If you’d prefer to have your own room, please select the single supplement option in the online booking form. The single supplement fee is for the whole trip, not per night. This will ensure you have a room to yourself. If you’re happy to share, you will be placed in a twin room with another adventure-buddy of the same gender in separate beds. If we can’t find anyone to share your room with, you have to pay for the single supplement.

We only share basic information about your adventure-buddy, but if you both agree you can keep in touch before the tour starts.

How physically difficult are the tours?

Walking tours are an important part of the itinerary and a good standard of health is required with the ability to walk on uneven surfaces and negotiate stairs.

(we provide personalized itineraries and private tours throughout New Zealand and Australia where one or more person has a physical or learning disability, is a slow walker or simply may need that bit of extra support along the way).

What are the accommodations like?

All the hotels on our escorted tours to New Zealand are carefully selected by our Directors to ensure they meet their exacting standards. Over the decades they’ve worked in the travel industry, they’ve come to understand precisely which hotel elements work best for your holiday. Location and consistent high standards are paramount. So, throughout your touring holiday in New Zealand, rest assured that we aim to provide top accommodation. And it does not cost the earth.

Is the optional program guaranteed to happen?

For optional programs you must apply and pay 45 days prior to departure. It is often no longer possible to apply after we start the tour but please contact us for more details.

Do you book flights as well?

All of our tours excluding airfares.

How much luggage am I allowed to bring?

Passengers are allowed one max 20kg suitcase/backpack and one day bag, as there are strict weight restrictions on our buses.

What is your no show policy?

Due to extremely strict time slots for entry into attractions, we recommend you show up 15 minutes before the scheduled departure time. Our groups depart precisely at the scheduled tour start time. If you show up late or cannot find the meeting point, for any reason, refund requests are not honored per policy. For most tours, it is not logistically possible to join the group after it has started but please contact us if you have any questions.

What sort of weather can I expect on my tour?

Please visit for a long term weather forecast.

Do I need to tell you about any medical or special conditions?

Yes we like to know about anything that needs consideration on your tour, such as ability to walk up stairs, etc. Once you have booked, you will receive a form requesting details of any medical conditions that may be relevant to your tour experience. This allows us to make any necessary arrangements.

Get your free info pack

If you want to check available dates, special prices for couples & families or get your free info pack - send us an enquiry now
Get a free info pack

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