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15 Must Go Places in New Zealand North Island for your Honeymoon

With its diverse landscape and stunning scenery, New Zealand is one of the most beautiful honeymoon destinations in the world. It is breathtaking at every turn. New Zealand comprises of two landmasses surrounded by 600 tiny islands, the North Island and the South Island. While the South Island gets a lot of attention due to its majestic scenery, the North Island is equally beautiful too. Known for its vibrant, cosmopolitan cities (Auckland & Wellington), volcanoes, geothermal wonders, national parks, heritage, and Maori culture. The weather here is slightly warmer and the waters are suitable for swimming. Previously we shared our Top Things to do in the North Island. In this issue, we will showcase the must-visit places in the North Island. 

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15 Must Go Places in New Zealand North Island for your Honeymoon

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1. Auckland, for vibrant city buzz

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This major city of New Zealand is the multicultural hub of food, wine, art, and culture and has been rated the third most livable city in the world. This urban city is minutes away from beautiful black sand beaches, scenic hiking trails, volcanic cones, and enchanting islands, all of which make perfect for a day trip. The Auckland region is also home to world-class food and wine producers, so you are surely in for a treat. 

Things to Do in Auckland:

Where to Stay in Auckland:

Click here for more hotels in Auckland on Booking.com >

2. Northland & Bay of Islands, for island life

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Northland is home to two coastlines with remarkable vistas. The West Coast is rugged and soulful, while the East Coast is sophisticated and urbane. The Bay of Islands is where 144 islands and boutique towns reside. Take a boat cruise, swim with dolphins, dive, fish, or simply spend your days basking in the sun. 

Things to Do in the Bay of Islands: 

Where to Stay in Bay of Islands:

3. The Coromandel, for a laid-back beach honeymoon

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Home to the Cathedral Cove, The Coromandel is famous for being the shoot location of The Chronicles of Narnia. The Coromandel has over 400km of white sand beaches and a misty rainforest. It’s laid-back, rustic atmosphere is charming to many. Here you can fish, dive, kayak, hike, cycle and even skydive in Whitianga. For those looking for more thrill, the Sleeping God Canyon is a 300m vertical descent down a set of waterfalls. 

Things to Do in Coromandel: 

Where to Stay in The Coromandel:

4. Hamilton – Waikato, for gorgeous sights

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Just south of Auckland lies the Hamilton-Waikato region, well known as The Shire in The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. This lush region is also well-known for its underground wonders, black surf beaches, and rolling green hills. Be sure to visit Matamata for the Hobbiton Movie Set, and the famous Waitomo glow-worm caves and the Hamilton Gardens. 

Things to Do in Hamilton – Waikato: 

Where to Stay in Hamilton: 

5. Rotorua, for a geothermal wonderland

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Set within the Pacific Rim of Fire, Rotorua is a geothermal wonderland. Here you will find shooting geysers, bubbling mud pools, and plenty of hot springs for you to soak in. Rotorua is also a great place to discover the Maori Culture, or indulge in fun activities like zorbing, go-karting, and cycling on a suspended monorail racetrack.

Things to Do in Rotorua:

Where to Stay in Rotorua: 

Click here for more hotels in Rotorua on Booking.com >

6. Bay of Plenty, for spectacular beaches & orchards 

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Bay of Plenty has spectacular beaches, juicy kiwifruit, and New Zealand’s only active marine volcano. Around Tauranga, you will find acres of orchards and gardens producing fresh fruit. Indulge in local wines and fresh seafood. Mount Maunganui, a short distance from Tauranga is a great surfing spot. 

Things to Do in Bay of Plenty: 

Where to Stay in Bay of Plenty: 

7. Eastland, for surfing and vineyards

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Though lesser explored, Eastland has world-class surf beaches, quality vineyards, and wineries. If you have a strong interest in Maori culture, Gisborne in Eastland is a city you won’t want to miss. Gisborne also takes the title of the “unofficial chardonnay capital of New Zealand”. Head to Tolaga Bay Wharf for beautiful sea views. Check out the things to do in Eastland

8. Taranaki, for outdoor adventures

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The Taranaki region is a mecca for outdoor enthusiasts. Here you will find amazing surf breaks, the volcanic cone of Mt Taranaki (featured in The Last Samurai), and a multitude of activities like river rafting, multi-day hikes through native forests, even snowboarding! There are also relaxing activities here, like art trails, festivals, museums, and galleries, amid a thriving cafe culture.

Things to Do in Taranaki: 

Where to Stay in Taranaki: 

9. Ruapehu, for surreal scenery

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Ruapehu is a UNESCO site and is home to New Zealand’s oldest national park – Tongariro National Park has steaming craters, surreal lakes and strange rock formations. Its centerpiece, Mt Ruapehu is a gorgeous sight whether in summer or winter. Whanganui National Park is rich in wilderness and human history. If you are into mountain biking, Ruapehu is the place for you. 

Things to Do in Ruapehu: 

  • Hike the Tongariro Alpine Crossing. Adrift Outdoors and Adventure Outdoors offer guided tours. 
  • Go Skiing at Whakapapa and Tūroa ski resorts
  • Cycle the 200km Great Ride Trail along the countryside and Whanganui River, or the lower slopes of Mt Ruapehu (Ohakune Old Coach Road)
  • Cycle or Walk the Timber Trail
  • Kayak or canoe the Whanganui River 
  • Ride Whakapapa’s gondola up slopes of Mt Ruapehu to New Zealand’s highest cafe – Knoll Ridge 

Where to Stay in Ruapehu: 

10. Taupō, for water sports & fishing

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Lake Taupō is about the size of Singapore. Created nearly 2000 years ago by a volcanic eruption, visit Craters of the Moon to see evidence of the lake’s fiery birth. North of Taupō you will find the magnificent Huka Falls. Taupō is great for water-skiing, sailing, kayaking, and what it’s most famous for – fishing. 

Things to Do in Taupō: 

Where to stay in Taupō: 

Click here for more hotels in Taupō on Booking.com >

11. Hawke’s Bay, for wine trails

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Hawke’s Bay is wine country. It’s fertile soils and warm, temperate climate has resulted in it being New Zealand’s top producer of wine – notably, red wines – cabernet sauvignon, merlot and syrah, but also stunning chardonnays. Be sure to take a bicycle wine tour! Apart from wine, Hawke’s Bay is also known for art deco, architecture and bird watching. 

Things to do in Hawke’s Bay: 

  • Hike a bike and taste your way around the region’s 72 vineyards (be sure to go to award-winning Te Mata Estate Winery and Craggy Range) Or check out the Hawke’s Bay Trails that stretches from Bay View to Cape Kidnappers
  • Go cafe or bar-hopping along Marine Parade, stretching 3km of Napier’s coastline
  • Visit the local Hawkes Bay farmers’ market for fresh fruit, artisan bread and picnic at a shady spot
  • Hike or bike up Te Mata Peak for panoramic views

Where to stay in Hawke’s Bay: 

12. Manawatu, for an authentic Kiwi experience

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Manawatu is heartland of New Zealand, offering honeymooners an authentic Kiwi experience. Here, you can river raft, visit museums, walk around the manicured gardens, and go horse-riding. The iconic Te Apiti – Manawatu Gorge is a must visit. 

Things to do in Manawatu:

Where to Stay in Manawatu: 

13. Whanganui, for a heritage experience

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Whanganui was one of the first cities to be founded in New Zealand. You will find heritage buildings, museums, galleries and gardens in this town. Find the famous ‘Bridge to Nowhere’ nestled in The Whanganui National Park. Jet boat in Whanganui river, or soak up the creative energy in the town.

Things to do in Whanganui: 

  • Have a picnic at the parks of Whanganui (Virginia Lake, Kowhai Park)
  • Get a panoramic view of Whanganui from Durie Hill War Memorial Tower
  • Go for a glass-blowing class at New Zealand Glassworks
  • Spend a day fishing or surfing at South Beach, or Kai Iwi Beach or Castlecliff

Where to Stay in Whanganui: 

14. Wellington, for vibrant culture

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The capital city of New Zealand features a compact blend of culture, history, nature and cuisine. Wellingon is named as one of the top 8 coffee cities by CNN, so be sure to get your coffee fix. Craft beer too is a must-try. Spend your day relaxing at Oriental bay (inner-city beach), touring museums and galleries, or go for an action-packed adventure like mountain biking and sea-water kayaking. For hikes, take the Makara Peak track or the City to Sea walk. 

Things to do in Wellington:

Where to stay in Wellington: 

Click here for more hotels in Wellington on Booking.com >

15. Wairarapa, for a relaxing scenic vacation

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An hour’s drive from Wellington will take you to Wairarapa, famous for its vineyards (Martinborough) and rugged landscapes. The towns here have an off-the-beaten-track charm for you to discover. 

Things to do in Wairarapa:

  • Go to Cape Palliser for a scenic adventure. Walk to Putangirua Pinnacles Scenic Reserve and climb the Cape Palliser Lighthouse
  • Explore the Wairarapa region on Horseback (check out Gladstone Horse Treks)
  • Go fishing at Lake Ferry and Castlepoint, or catch a trout at the Ruamahanga River
  • Go vineyard hopping and be sure to taste some of New Zealand’s best pinot noirs
  • Explore Castlepoint beach and spot dolphins, fur seals and if you are lucky, small whales! 

Where to Stay in Wairarapa:

We hope you enjoyed reading our guide to the must-see places in New Zealand North Island. If you’ve found this guide useful, please share this with your family and friends!


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