Auckland to Cape Reinga and a little more

Cape Reinga - Photo by Sids1, Flickr Creative CommonsCape Reinga - Photo by Sids1, Flickr Creative Commons

The route between Auckland up to Reinga and the beautiful Bay of Islands is a picturesque trip with lots of small places to explore along the way.  This is prime motorhome rental and campervan hire country, with lots of bays where you can pull over and spend the night stargazing.

Start this leg of your adventure in Auckland, the largest of New Zealand’s cities.  There’s everything here from top restaurants to tourist sights and a little further out you will find lakes and golf courses.  You journey north, and it won’t be long before your tempted to stop at one of the pristine beaches to stretch your legs and maybe try out the surf, especially at places such as Orewa.  From here the road will take you past Matakohe with its internationally acclaimed Kauri Museum and Dargaville, the Kumara capital of the country and a place with some great views.

For your first night why not find somewhere around the lakes of Kai Iwi Lakes, where you can try your hand at trout fishing, waterskiing and other water sports.  The lakes are also one of the best places to spot a kiwi in the wild, why not try one of the nightly guided walks in Waipoua and Trounson Parks.  You can also spend time exploring the Waipoua Forest where Tane Mahuta, God of the Forest, resides.  You’ll have to see for yourself!

You’ve been away from the beach for a couple of days and if you’re suffering withdrawal symptoms the next stop at Opononi should put you right.  You’re off again through the Waima forest and some ‘must stops’ on this part of the route are the Whirinaki Falls, and Rawene, a very important site in the area’s Maori history.  From here that you catch the ferry for the short crossing to Kohukohu and then it’s onwards and upwards, continuing your journey north.

If you enjoy being outdoors and letting off steam the next stop at Ahipara will be right up your street.  This is where you will find 4WD trekking, sand surfing, blokarting, horse riding…..the list goes on and on, and depending on your interests you may want to spend a couple of nights here.  If a few hours are enough then move onto Kaitaia, the most northerly town in New Zealand before travelling to the very tip at Cape Reinga tomorrow.

At Cape Reinga, is where the Pacific Ocean and Tasman Sea meet, and from the headlands which surround it there are some incredible views, if you enjoy getting off the beaten track then take the gravel road to Spirits Bay and prepare to be amazed.

From here everything is south, you pass places such as Te Kao with its ancient Kauri forests at Gumdiggers Park, and if you’ve got a suitable 4x4 motorhome rental or campervan hire then head out to ninety-mile beach for some great sand boarding opportunities.   

At Awanui you’ll head east past some beautiful peninsula’s, beaches and bays and then small towns with heritage trails, cafes and of course legendary fish and chip shops, if your feeling peckish then try the legendary Mangonui’s fish and chip shop in Kiwiana.

You’ll now be heading for the very popular tourist spot of the Bay of Islands.  This place has rightfully attracted tourists for centuries and it was at Waitangi the treaty was signed between the Maoris and the British Crown in 1840.  When you stop here remember to see the ornately carved Maori meetinghouse and the world's largest ceremonial canoe or waka.  

So you’ve come to the end of your motorhome rental or campervan hire journey from Auckland to Cape Reinga, and gone a little further too.  No doubt that along the way you will see some wonderful sights and have some great memories to take home with you.

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