12 Must Places to Visit when Exploring New Zealand -North Island

Visiting New Zealand for the first time was really exciting. Being a sucker for nature, I was imaging all sorts of natural scenery that New Zealand is well-known for.

The country is divided into two main islands- The south and the North. I had the opportunity to explore a couple of places in New Zealand’s North Island way back 2014.

I am going to impart some kick-ass places in the Northern Part of NZ that I think would worth your time when you get the chance to explore in this amazing country of the south, New Zealand. In no particular order:

1. Chill at the Largest City in NZ – Auckland

The largest City in New Zealand. There are tons of sights  to see and fun stuff to do in Auckland; from doing bungee jumping at the famous Auckland Sky Tower – to visiting MOTAT (New Zealand’s largest transport and technology museum.)- and even basking your skin in the sun at the Naked Beach.

2. Get some Sun-kissed skin at this “90 Mile Beach”.

Renowned for spectacular sunsets and boasting one of the best left hand surf breaks in the world, Ninety Mile Beach is an almost never-ending paradise.

The beach and its northern dunes are a tourist destination. The dunes, looking much like a desert landscape, are often used for bodyboarding which leads us to our number 4 must place to visit.

3.  A Sand Boarding of a lifetime in Waipapakauri Sand Dunes

Upon heading to Cape Reinga, do not forget to have a quick stop at  Waipapakauri Sand Dunes and have some quick adrenaline rush by doing Sand boarding.

Yes, New Zealand have a vast desert sand dunes and has the tallest sand boarding slide I’ve tried so far.

4. Experience Geothermal activity in Rotoroa

Thermal activity is at the heart of much of Rotorua’s tourist appeal. Geysers and bubbling mud pools, hot thermal springs — are within easy reach of Rotorua.

Read more: 8 Things that you can See and Do in Rotoroa, New Zealand

 

5. Visit Bilbo Baggins House in Matamata

There and back again, A Hobbits Tale. The town were the Famous Baggins’s live. Welcome to the Lord of the Rings movie set.

 

6. Waipoa Forest “Home of the Lord of the Forest”.

Tane Mahuta
Meet Tane Mahuta “Lord of the Forest”.

Home of New Zealand’s largest living Kaori Tree!

Waipoua Forest preserves some of the best examples of kauri forest remaining in New Zealand. The forest was declared a sanctuary in 1952. A community based volunteer organisation, the Waipoua Forest Trust, helps maintain the forest.

Behind us is the Tane Mahuta “Lord of the Forest”.

7. Commune with History and Nature at Wairiri Boulders Nature Park

Around 2.8 million years ago there was a volcano in the area which poured out a basalt layer, that covered the land which is now known as Wairere valley.

The boulders in the Wairere Valley are the erosional remnants of a basalt flow that has been dated as approximately 2.8 million years old. We have two dates for these so – called Horeke basalts : one at 2.84 and the other at 2.67 million years.

Location: The Wairere Boulders – Nature Park – or – Ecotourism Adventure Park is located in the Hokianga Harbour area on the West Coast of the North Island of New Zealand.

 

8. Be amaze with the stars inside a cave at Kawiti Glow Worm Cave

Photo credit to the owner

Explore the world famous milky way, a cavern filled with glow worms as far as the eye can see. Journey underground through networks of stalactites and stalagmites to hidden chambers like the Waiomio night sky where the glow worms are so close you can almost touch them.

Located right in the heart of the Waiomio Valley, the Kawiti Caves are home to thousands of luminous glow worms, breathtaking rock formations and lush green rainforest.

Since this glow worms are highly photo sensitive, no flash allowed when taking pictures.

 

9.  Mesmerize the beauty of its Gardens in Hamilton

The country’s fourth most-populous city. Don’t miss the chance to visit the famous Hamilton Gardens. The garden has several spectacular concepts from Indian Char Bagh Garden to Italian Renaissance Garden to some famous Asian Themed Gardens.

 

10. Get to see Narnia upclose at Coromandel Peninsula

Home of the famous Cathedral Cove were Narnia ” Prince Caspian” movie was shot. Aside from the cove, Coromandel also has amazing star gazing activity at night.

Not only that, they also have this ” Hot Water Beach”. Its name comes from underground hot springs which filter up through the sand between the high and low water tidal reaches. The beach is a popular destination both for locals and tourists visiting New Zealand.

 

11. Take off in a Plane Glider at Kaikohe

Flying without the assistance of an engine is something that everybody should do at least once in a lifetime. It’s quiet, except for the sound of the wind, and it provides you with a whole new perspective of the world below.

There are many Plane Gliding spots and clubs in New Zealand but I was able to experience it in Kaikohe. You can check their Facebook page here.

Kaikohe Gliding Club
Kaikohe Airfield, New Zealand
Name: Peter Fiske
Phone: (09) 407-8454
Group: Club

12. Breathtaking view of Cape Reinga

Last but not the least, Cape Reinga. It it located at the north tip part of New Zealand. The area is considered as a separation marker between the Tasman Sea to the west and the Pacific Ocean to the east. You can see the two great seas clashing within a specific time of the year wherein you can see two distinct colors; Navy blue in one side and torquoise green on the other.

Cape Reinga is on the tentative list of UNESCO waiting to receive World Heritage Site status.The cape is already a favourite tourist attraction, with over 120,000 visitors a year and around 1,300 cars arriving per day during peak season.

 

 

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