Discovery Campervans New Zealand

Auckland to Auckland in 10 Days (1,440 km)

Discover the wonders of the top of the North Island as you embark on a ten day exploration that will begin and end in New Zealand's biggest city, Auckland.

This incredible journey will take you through the northern highlights of Dargaville, Kaitaia, Paihia, Whangarei, Hamilton, Rotorua, Tauranga, Pauanui and Coromandel where you can explore the natural wonder and beauty of New Zealand at your own pace! Starting your journey in Auckland prepares you for the splendour and magnificence that you are about to find!

Day 1 - Auckland to Dargaville

176KM (2 hrs, 26 mins)

Begin your motorhome adventure of New Zealand's North Island by picking up your campervan from the centre of Auckland. The surroundings of this spectacular city truly set the scene for what is to come, with a waterside location and distant hills and dormant volcanoes creating a stunning backdrop.

Heading out of the city in the early afternoon will allow you to familiarise yourself with your new driving conditions, while the sun is still shining. The 180 kilometre drive to the town of Dargaville rewards you with amazing sights, sounds and smells and all you have to do is soak them up!

The town of Dargaville is situated on the bank of the Northern Wairoa River and is also home to one of the largest, unbroken stretches of beach in New Zealand. Dargaville is the perfect place to base yourself for the night, with a friendly and welcoming atmosphere making you feel right at home!

Where to Stay!

Dargaville Campervan Park and Cabins

Finding somewhere to park your new 'home' is made easy by the Dargaville Campervan Park, as they boast a central location, making them extremely easy to find. At the park you can enjoy powered sites that are complete with private ensuites next to them, which is perfect for those who do not have a bathroom incorporated into their motorhome. A close proximity to the local shops, restaurants and cafes will give your campervan a break, as well as allowing you to explore the local sights on foot! (

Dargaville Holiday Park

The Dargaville Holiday Park is a newly renovated tourist park that is set on beautiful, secluded, park-like grounds. The park is close to the local beaches, parks and forests, which makes it the ideal place to base yourself for further exploration of the area's natural playgrounds! (

Don't miss!

Baylys Beach

While visiting the town of Dargaville, you simply must take a walk along New Zealand's longest beach. Stretching a total of 100 kilometres, you are sure to find your very own section to enjoy in peace and quiet. The raging waves and shifting sands are simply spectacular and truly a sight to behold!

Other Attractions

The Dargaville Museum

For those wishing to gain an understanding of the local history and heritage of Dargaville, a visit to the Dargaville Museum is essential! The museum is home to relics of old shipwrecks, along with many pioneer and Maori displays. With indoor and outdoor facilities, as well as convenient parking for your campervan, there really is no reason not to check it out! (

Day 2 - Dargaville to Kaitaia

162 KM (2 hrs, 20 mins)

After you have finished your exploration of Dargaville, it is time to head further north along the East Coast. When travelling the 162 kilometres from Dargaville to Kaitaia, you will come across many places that you will want to stop at and investigate. The Kai Iwi Lakes are the perfect place to stop for a picnic lunch as you will be able to enjoy the pristine surrounds while you soak up the peaceful nature of this location.

This stretch of the drive truly is amazing! Throughout the entirety of your journey you can take in the wonders of the 1000 year-old trees and cathedral-like groves of the Waipoua Forest, allowing for never-a-dull moment in your voyage.

After cruising past the pleasant rolling hills and passing through the Kauri gumfields town of Ahipara, you will come into the commercial centre of Kaitaia! The main industries here are forestry and tourism, with the orchards of avocados also playing a prominent role in the ambience of the area. Kaitaia is the ideal place to stay if you wish to explore all that the very far north has to offer!

Where to stay!

Norfolk Motel and Campervan Park

This tourist abode is the perfect place to stay while discovering Kaitaia and the unique features of the far north. Located just 6 kilometres north of the town centre and only a 10 minute drive to the local lakes and the famous "Ninety Mile Beach", the positioning of this park is simply ideal.

The park boasts an impressive 16, powered, grassy campervan sites, with prices starting at just $12 per person, per night. With modern BBQ facilities and a family-friendly heated pool, there really is no need to look any further then the Norfolk Campervan Park! (

Don't miss!

Gum Diggers Park

The Gum Diggers Park is located in the ancient buried Kauri Forest, just 25 kilometres north of Kaitaia. Gain an understanding of some of the local history and how things were done in the days gone by! This attraction offers a truly unique, one-of-a-kind experience, which makes it one of the must-see attractions of the Northland. (

Ninety Mile Beach

Ninety Mile Beach stretches just west of Kaitaia all the way to Cape Reinga. Although the beach is actually only 88 kilometres long (not living up to its name), the sights here will simply amaze you! The looming sand dunes offer a desert-like landscape and are truly unlike anything else you will see in New Zealand!

Other Attractions

Millennium Nocturnal Park, Kiwi, Ostrich and Glow-worm - Kaitaia

This natural fauna wonderland is located between the Bay of Islands and Ninety Mile Beach. The park is home to an eel pond, an ostrich paradise and a glow-worm cave, just to name a few. What makes it perfect for you is that you can park your campervan here and stay the night. This gives you the opportunity to escape the town centre, as well as allowing you to take the free tour of the night glow-worm world. Enjoy the friendliness and hospitality of the locals and take part in something out of the ordinary! ( OR

Day 3 - Kaitaia to Paihia

101 KM (1 hr, 24 mins)

Although the prospect of leaving Kaitaia may sadden you, a smile will quickly come to your face as you venture further across the East Coast along the S.H.1. Discover the sweeping golden sand beaches and sheltered coves that line the coastline and take in the breathtaking views that stretch for miles. Although the drive to Paihia is only 103 kilometres in distance, you simply must stop in at the fishing village of Mangonui for lunch. Taste the freshest fish and chips that you will ever have and take some time to browse the fine local arts and crafts.

Eventually you will turn onto the S.H.10, which will directly bring you into the 'Jewel of the Bay Islands', Paihia. This is the perfect destination for you to get out on the water and take part in some of the fantastic water based activities on offer. Your stay in Paihia is sure to be one filled with fun and adventure, and will be the aquatic highlight of your campervan holiday!

Where to Stay!

Bay of Islands Holiday Park - Paihia

This tourist park is nestled on the banks of the Waitangi River, which makes it the perfect park for canoeing, kayaking and safe swimming. The park is home to many spacious powered sites, which will allow you to park your campervan in an area where you can enjoy your own space! The native surrounds provide for a quiet night of relaxation and serenity: the perfect place for you to catch up on some quality reading. (

Beachside Holiday Park

If you choose to opt for a park that places a greater emphasis on the surrounding beaches, islands and bays, your best bet is to stay at the Beachside Holiday Park. As the name suggests, the park is located right on the beachfront, making it an ideal distance from all those exciting water activities. The powered sites here start at just $13 per person, per night, which makes it ideal to suit any budget. (

Don't Miss!

Cruising the Islands

The most popular cruise that tourists venture on is the "Kings Dolphin Cruises and Tours". These tours offer exciting opportunities to swim with the dolphins or explore ancient ship wrecks and discover Cape Reinga and Ninety Mile Beach from a whole new perspective. (

Other Attractions

Haruru Falls

These magnificent, yet placid falls are located in Waitangi. Spend a few hours exploring the natural bush surroundings on the multiple bush tracks that are spread throughout the forest area. Visiting the Haruru Falls allows you to get back in touch with nature and discover the untouched intensity of some of New Zealand's best!

Day 4 - Paihia to Whangarei

70 KM (1 hr, 9 mins)

When leaving the seaside abode of Paihia in search of Whangarei, I strongly advise that you take the scenic route. You can access this by taking a short drive north until you reach the town of Russel. From here, follow the coastline until you reach Helena Bay, which will take you back onto the S.H. 1. Taking this driving route will allow you to experience the natural beauty of the West Coast, which boasts a stunning indented coastline and magnificent ocean views. The roads are all sealed here, which will make your campervan journey a smooth and pleasant one.

Upon reaching the city of Whangarei, you will find a magnificent contrast of mountainous surrounds, clear blue lakes and beaches and a pleasant cosmopolitan feel. Whangarei offers something for all and is just the right place to spend the last night of your New Zealand campervanning adventure!

Where to Stay!

Whangarei Holiday Park

The Whangarei Holiday Park is located in a native park reserve, with stunning hills setting a pleasant backdrop to the park. Home to multiple powered sites, starting at just $15 a night, this is the perfect place to base yourself for exploration of this city! Plus you will also receive a further 10% off just for choosing Discovery to hire your campervan through! (

Don't miss!

Museum and Kiwi House Heritage Park

While visiting the city of Whangarei, a trip to the museum is a must-do! The museum features significant exhibitions of early settler collections and is the perfect way to discover the history of this great city. The park is also home to Kiwi House, heritage buildings and a heritage park. Located just a five minute drive from the city, this is the perfect way to spend your holiday's last afternoon. (

Other Attractions

Longview Estate Winery

If you have a spare few hours while visiting Whangarei, you should definitely pay a visit to this stunning winery. Located on the State Highway, just on the edge of the city, you can experience the stretching vineyards and taste and purchase some of the local wine that is produced right on the premises. Enjoying the sights, smells and tastes that are on offer here allows you to reflect on the entirety of your New Zealand experience! (

Day 5 - Whangarei to Hamilton

283 KM (3 hrs, 57 mins)

Day 5 will bring you back through Auckland and through to Hamilton. Follow the State Highway until you reach the Waipu turnoff. Taking this driving route will take you past pristine white sand beaches and will eventually take you to Waipu Cove, Langs Beach and Mangawhai Heads. From here, drive to Wellsford, where you will once again be cruising down the State Highway.

The second route you can take runs from Wellsford to Pakiri. Pakiri is a fantastic surfing beach and is the perfect place to stop for a bit of lunch. Rejoin the State Highway at Warkworth, where you will once again experience wide sweeping beaches and stunning Pacific Ocean views.

The State Highway will eventually bring you through Auckland, where you may choose to stop and explore, or simply pass through. If you do just pass through, take the time to explore Auckland's neighbour, Manakau City, the country's fastest growing city. Take some time to discover the city's highlights, before you end the 291 kilometre journey upon arrival in Hamilton.

The city of Hamilton is a diverse and vibrant city which has the energy of a bustling metropolis while still enjoying a relaxed, laid back lifestyle. The city itself is very nature oriented, as it home to over 135 parks and gardens, has 16 kilometres of the Waikato River flowing through it and boasts 1000 hectares of open space, in the city alone. This is the perfect place to relax, play and base yourself for the fifth night of your campervan adventure.

Where to Stay!

Hamilton City Holiday Park

Searching for a quiet and peaceful place to stay while in Hamilton? Then the Hamilton City Holiday Park is just the place for you and your campervan. Located just 1.5 kilometres east of the city centre, you can enjoy easy access to the city, Hamilton Gardens and Mystery Creek, all while enjoying the peace and tranquillity that makes this park so appealing. The park-like setting is the perfect place for you to set up camp for the night and the sites all enjoy space and privacy, which is sure to make your stay a pleasant and uninterrupted one!

Don't miss!

Horse Riding in Pakiri

This is a true once-in-a-lifetime experience! Gallop along the sandy white beaches of Pakiri on horseback and absorb the true serenity of these spectacular natural highlights. Breathe in the fresh sea breeze and feel the wind wisp through your hair as you sit back and take in all that surrounds you!

Hamilton Zoo

Known as the "zoo with personality", the Hamilton Zoo is home to over 600 native and exotic animals and is the ideal attraction for a recreational day out! The natural and landscaped grounds and tranquil surroundings, allows you to experience the wonders of the living world in peace and beauty and soak up the very essence of New Zealand's wildlife.

Other Attractions!

Hamilton Gardens

The Hamilton Gardens have been said to tell "The Story of the Garden". They do this through the ever-changing exhibitions of unique, native flora that transforms with each season. Covering 58 hectares of land, there is sure to be something that will grab your eye's attention and leave you amazed at the true wonder and beauty of nature.

Day 6 - Hamilton to Rotorua

106 KM (1 hr, 39 mins)

Leave the attractions of Hamilton behind and begin you venture towards the next stop of your campervan trek: Rotorua. Head towards the coast along S.H.1. through Hillcrest and Cambridge, until you eventually make it onto S.H.5. Cambridge is known as "the town of trees and champions". While passing through this charming boutique town, be sure to check out the stunning architecture and the lovely oak trees that line the streets of this historic town.

After journeying for 106 kilometres you will enter the stunning Rotorua area. The city of Rotorua is located on the southern shore of Lake Rotorua and is known as the heartland of Maori culture. This amazing city is home to that many attractions and highlights, that it is impossible to see it all in one day. However, make sure you at least get as glimpse of the geothermal wonders that make this area famous, the sparkling lakeland chain, the natural spas and the Tudor architecture and parks and gardens that line the city streets. Rotorua is an adventure playground that will welcome you with open arms and make you never want to leave.

Where to Stay!

Rotorua Top 10 Holiday Park

This is the closest holiday park to the city, which allows you to enjoy the city highlights right from your very backyard. This is the perfect place to stay if you are more of a city person and wish to explore all the highlights of the inner city region. The park features excellent facilities, including a heated swimming pool and spa, which are will make your stay a pleasant and comfortable one.

Blue Lake Top 10 Holiday Park

If you are seeking to escape the hustle and bustle of the city, then the Blue Lake Top 10 Holiday Park is the perfect place for you and your campervan. Located a 10 minute drive from the city centre, this holiday park allows you to experience the best of both worlds; the shops and attractions as well as the peace and tranquillity of the natural environment. The park features excellent motorhome sites that back onto New Zealand bush and give you privacy and peace. With an ideal position right near Lake Terawera, Buried Village and the Blue Lake Walk, this is the perfect place for you to get back in touch with nature.

Don't Miss!

Buried Village

Take a scenic 15 minute drive from Rotorua, past the blue and green lakes and you will come across the buried village of Te Wairoa. This living museum was once a vibrant township that was later destroyed by the eruption of Mt Terawera. Take the emotional and fascinating journey of exploring this unique attraction, all while enjoying the pristine native bush and sensational wilderness that surrounds this historical site.

Rotorua Museum

Keeping in the spirit of discovering the local history, a visit to the Rotorua Museum is another attraction that you shouldn't miss! This museum of art and history will allow you to discover the rich history of the Te Arawa people and the wonders of the Maori culture. Residing in the Bath House, a historical, Tudor-style building, the museum is sure to leave you feeling well informed and more culturally attuned with the local way of life.

Other Attractions!

Pohutu Geyser

This is just one of the thermal attractions of the Rotorua area, but definitely worth a look at. This steaming, bubbling land erupts frequently which offers a fascinating experience for those lucky enough to view it. Spend a few hours exploring the land that is full of silica terraces, bubbling mud pools and unique geothermal vegetation. This is truly unique experience and one that you will only find in Rotorua!

Day 7 - Rotorua to Tauranga

61.6 KM (1 hr, 4 mins)

The seventh day of your campervan adventure has rolled around and it's time to leave the geothermal wonderland of Rotorua and head north towards Tauranga. Drive along the western banks of Lake Rotorua and you will pass through Utuhina, Selwyn Heights and Ngongotuha. The trip to Tauranga is only 62 kilometres so all you have to do is pass through these areas and take in the sights from your motorhome.

You will eventually be led onto S.H.36. through the towns of Te Pu and Ngawaro. Continue along for just a little while longer and you will enter the largest city of the Bay of Plenty, Tauranga. This popular tourist destination is home to many natural attractions and stunning scenery, with an abundance of outdoor activities on offer. The coastal proximity of this city means that visitors can enjoy a pleasant blend of stunning beaches, marinas and mountain scenes. The lively harbour city enjoys a sub-tropical climate and is one of the sunniest cities in New Zealand. The atmosphere will simply make you want to stay forever!

Where to Stay!

Tauranga Tourist Park

This secure inner city park is the best place to stay if you wish to explore the highlights of the city. The manicured, park-like setting of the tourist park is the perfect place for your campervan to rest. Offering a quiet and peaceful atmosphere, excellent facilities and prices starting at just $10, where better place to base yourself for exploration of this fascinating city?

Omokoroa Holiday Park

For a breath of fresh air, a stay at the Omokoroa Holiday Park is just what the doctor ordered. This beautiful and peaceful holiday destination is just a short walk from the Omokoroa Harbour and only a short drive from the beaches of Mt Maunganui and Waihi Beach. The heated mineral pools and stunning flower gardens within the park give it a natural and exotic ambience that is sure to make your stay here a rememberable one.

Don't Miss!

Dolphin Safaris

This is the chance of a lifetime! Take a cruise out on the Bay of Plenty and discover the wonder and mystery of the dolphins, whales, orcas and other interesting marine life. Take part in the safe and enjoyable fun of swimming with the dolphins as they frolic in their natural environment. This natural encounter is sure to leave you feeling exhilarated and ready for anything!

Cascade Fountain Gardens

As the name suggests, these gardens are home to many unique water features and fountains. The gardens are set amongst lakes, ancient trees and flower gardens and are home to many architectural elements such as ornate gazebos and sculptures. This place is even more majestic at night, when the lights come alive and the cascades glisten. This is definitely one of the best ways to spend an hour in Tauranga!

Other Attractions!

Fernland Spa Thermal Mineral Springs

Experience the purity of the Fernland Thermal Mineral Springs as you sit back and relax in one of the geothermal pools of this therapeutic complex. Set in a beautiful, secluded valley, your surroundings are sure to take your breath away. The pools are 100% pure, crystal clear water and the complex enjoys a continuous flow of fresh mineral water all year round. This is the perfect place, to relax, unwind and rest those tired muscles from all the driving you have accomplished.

Te Puna Quarry Park

This is one of the area's unique and basically untouched natural wonderlands. While exploring this park you can enjoy spectacular views over the Bay of Plenty, while taking in the abundance of ponds, tree ferns and native trees. The park is also home to a natural amphitheatre, which captures the very nature and tranquillity of this amazing area.

Day 8 - Tauranga to Pauanui

126 KM (1 hr, 52 mins)

Leave the relaxing nature of Tauranga behind as you travel along S.H.2 towards Pauanui. This route will take you past Mount Manangua and through Kaikati and Waihi. Venture onto S.H.25. and you will then pass through Parakwai, Whanamata, Wharekawa and Puketui. Whangamata is one of the most popular tourist resorts in New Zealand so it seems only fitting that you visit Whangamata Beach. Try your luck at some surfing or simply take a dip in the cool, refreshing water. A visit here will leave you feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.

Upon arrival in Pauanui you will be instantly taken with the beauty that surrounds you. This coastal settlement is nestled on the east coast of the Coromandel Peninsula, enjoying a sheltered and idyllic environment. The area offers spectacular fishing and diving opportunities as it is located right on the ocean front as well as on the mouth of the Tairua River. Neighbouring the equally beautiful coastal settlement of Tairua, you are sure to find something to do here.

Where to Stay!

The Glade Holiday Park

The Glade Holiday Park is where you will find rest and relaxation as it is located right by the sea. The park emphasises the wide open spaces, safe clean waters, white sandy beaches, bushwalks and spectacular harbour views of Pauanui. The park is located right on the river estuary and you can choose from 10 powered sites, with prices starting at just $18.

Don't Miss!

Pauanui Mountain Walking Track

This is the perfect way to capture all of the sights of Pauanui and surrounds. Begin the track by climbing from the southern end of Pauanui Beach. The walk is a steep climb but the views at the top are worth it! Coastal and mountain views can be appreciated from whichever angle you are looking from. This is truly a breathtaking experience!

Other Attractions!

Pauanui/ Tairua Ferry

This ferry service operates every hour during the summer season and is the perfect way to discover the local waterways. Take your campervan across the estuary to Tairua where you can further explore the wonders of this area from the comfort of your motorhome.

Slipper Island

Explore the historic sights, scenic walks, safe snorkelling, diving, fishing and ancient wrecks of Slipper Island and you won't be sorry you did! This privately owned island is located just 8 kilometres south east of Pauanui and is easily accessible via a water taxi from the mainland.

Day 9 - Pauanui to Coromandel Town

108 KM (1 hr, 35 mins)

On the second last day of your motorhome holiday, it is time to discover the remainder of the Coromandel Peninsula. Travelling in a northerly direction along the coastline on S.H.25. will take you on a 108 kilometre journey through Whenuakite, Kaimarama, Whitianga, Wharekaho, Matarangi and Te Rerenga. Be sure to make a stop at Whitianga and Mercury Bay and explore the natural wonder of this unspoilt paradise. Soak up the beautiful coastal scenery as you enjoy a picnic lunch on the shores of Mercury Bay. This is sure to put you in the mood for what is to come in Coromandel Town.

Coromandel is renowned world-wide for its natural beauty. Home to misty rainforests and pristine golden beaches, its no wonder this coastal paradise is so popular with not only the tourists, but the locals as well. Since this is the last night of your campervan holiday of the north of the North Island, you may as well sit back, relax and soak up the laid back and fresh atmosphere that makes Coromandel so inviting.

Where to Stay!

Shelly Beach Top 10 Holiday Park

Situated on a quiet, safe beach, just 5 kilometres north of the township of Coromandel, the Shelly Beach Top 10 Holiday Park is the perfect place to spend the last night of your holiday. Base yourself here for swimming, boating and fishing in the surrounding waterways and if you have the afternoon spare, why not explore some of the off-shore islands. This beachfront accommodation offers excellent facilities and is just the right place to rest your campervan before the journey home in the morning.

Don't Miss!

Driving Creek Railway and Potteries

Take a scenic, one-hour train ride on the world class mountain railway at Driving Creek Railway and Potteries. The train will take you past the Kauri Planting and the impressive engineering features of the mountain area. Experience island and coastal views as the train winds through mountainous terrain and untouched forest. Be sure to check out the pottery and souvenirs at the craft shop on your way out!

Go Kayak Coromandel

In the mood for kayaking the beautiful waters of the Coromandel? Take an eco-tour with Go Kayak! These tours depart from various areas across the Coromandel region, so you are sure to find somewhere to suit you. Taking part in this experience will allow you to discover the untouched beaches, off-shore islands, volcanic rock formations and the stunning coastline of the Coromandel region. Gain an insight into the wonders of this area and have fun while you are doing it! (

Other Attractions!

Ocean Wave Tour

The Ocean Wave Tour is the ultimate sea cave adventure! Take this unique endeavour of the protected waters of the Te Whanganui A Hei Marine Reserve under the guidance of expert professionals. This tour will take you along the unique volcanic coastline, where you can explore the caves and hidden blow holes in a way you may never have thought possible. The visit to the Cathedral Cave is the highlight of the trip and the frequent dolphin, seal and penguin spotting, guarantee to make this tour unforgettable!

Day 10 - Coromandel to Auckland

169 KM (2 hrs, 19 mins)

You have finally reached the end of your campervan adventure. Awake feeling refreshed and ready to endeavour on your journey back to Auckland. This leg of the driving route will take you south along the coastline, westerly towards the west coast and then North towards Auckland, doubling back through Manakau City. You should take this time to soak up the stunning scenery that surrounds you from whichever way you look. This is the perfect way to unwind from all the adventure and fun that you have just had and to prepare yourself for re-entering city life. Make sure that you leave plenty of time spare before you have to return your campervan, as you will want to take every opportunity that arises to finish your exploration of the northern North Island.

Don't Miss!

Kauaeranga Valley

This is undoubtedly the most prominent highlight of the Coromandel region, and as it is located around 64 kilometres south of Coromandel Town, it is the perfect place to break up your trip back to Auckland. Discover the hill and bush scenery and the looming mountains of this spectacular valley as you endeavour on one of the 21 walking tracks and explore the native flora and fauna that makes this area so unique. The stunning waterfalls are the talking point of the valley and offer the perfect place for a picnic lunch. The Kauaeranga Valley captures the very essence of the natural beauty of New Zealand and is the ideal way to end your holiday!

Other Attractions!

Butterfly and Orchid Gardens

When passing through Thames, be sure to discover this natural wonderland of some of the world's most beautiful butterflies. Take the winding garden path through the stunning orchids and you will eventually reach a pristine waterfall. The colour and vibrancy of this garden makes it the perfect place to fill up the rest of your camera and stop for a nice cup of tea! (

End of Trip!

Once you arrive back in New Zealand, it is time to return your 'home' to the pre-arranged destination. Although it may be sad to say goodbye, just remember that there is always the option to do it all over again! But for now, you can be happy with all the memories and happy times that you have accumulated over the past 10 days!