We will arrive Feb 2, 2015, and spend 2 weeks and I'm overwhelmed by the information out there..... anyone have a guideline for places to stay while moving around the north island? We love beaches, beautiful scenery, small towns... etc. We arrive at 11:45pm, so we're thinking of walking to the Novotel hotel the first night to crash and then moving from there on Monday morning. Thanks so much!
The month of February is probable the most beautiful time to visit New Zealand and especially the North Island. There are plenty of things to do here and you could decide how you want to divide your time here.
Auckland (5 days) could include the city tour, 9 mile beach up north and the Coromandel in the east which are all nearby Auckland. Its better to take a car and then cover the rest of the North Island. On your way from Auckland to Taupo you can visit Hamilton . If you have time then you could visit Hobbiton set (http://www.hobbitontours.com/) or Waitomoglowworm caves (http://www.waitomo.com/waitomo-glowworm-caves.aspx).
On your way from Taupo to Wellington you can see the stunning coastline and other small towns on your way. Take a stop at Mt Ngauruhoe which is one of the active volcanoes in this part of the world. If you are a LOTR fan, then you might want to refer it as Mt Doom.
Wellington boasts a compact downtown area that’s easy to explore on foot and a wealth of architectural styles, from 19th-century wooden cottages to Art Deco masterpieces. Should definitely discover the city’s Maori roots at the Museum of Wellington City & Sea and the Museum of New Zealand. Sip coffee and people-watch in lively Courtney Place, or survey the city from scenic Mount Victoria. When the sun goes down on Windy Wellington, take a nocturnal tour of Zealandia Wildlife Sanctuary to meet some colourful inhabitants.
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