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WHANGANUI & Wairarapa EXPLORER

6 Days

$2,999 pp
3 Seats Left!

WHANGANUI & Wairarapa EXPLORER

Departures

  • November 13, 2022
Only 3 Seats Left!

Prices

  • $2999 per person share twin from Auckland
  • $3099 per person from Tauranga

What's included?

  • Quality coach travel throughout in full size touring coach with experience Coach driver
  • One way flight from Wellington
  • Quality Accommodation in twin or single rooms
  • Cooked Breakfast daily
  • Dinner each evening
  • Entry to National Army Museum Waiouru
  • Visit Tangiwai Memorial
  • Cruise on Paddle Steamer Whanganui River with light lunch.
  • Dinner Historic Rutland Hotel
  • Entry to Pukaha National Wildlife Centre
  • Entry to Stonehenge, Wairarapa
  • Visit to Kahikatea Gardens
  • Wine Tasting & Light lunch at Tirohana Estate, Martinborough
  • Services of a Tour Manager from Auckland back to Auckland (subject to numbers)
  • FREE home pick up and return in the greater Auckland, area* conditions apply

B – Breakfast     LL – Light Lunch     D – Dinner     SD – Special Dinner

Day 1: Auckland--Taupo (D)

We are transferred from our home address in the greater Auckland area and travel through the lush Waikato farmlands into Hamilton. Here we make a stop at the Hamilton Gardens to enjoy the sights of one of the most visited attractions in New Zealand. We are joined by our Tauranga Supremers here and rejoin the coach for our journey on to Taupo. The vast waters of Lake Taupo, a volcanic caldera, drain into the Huka Falls, and we can see the dramatic, crystalblue cascading waters when we make a stop before travelling on to our overnight at the beautiful Manuel’s Millennium Hotel on the lake side. Enjoy the sunset from the bar area and then a lovely meal in the restaurant with your Tour Manager and drive. A lovely way to start our tour.

Day 2: Taupo—Whanganui (B D)

After breakfast we join our coach and journey through to the National Army Museum in Waiouru. The Museum provides access to a unique collection of military exhibits, vehicles and memorabilia and is a guardian of many of our national treasures. We then travel to Tangiwai where we visit the memorial to the worst railway disaster in New Zealand’s history. This occurred on Christmas Eve 1953 when the Wellington-Auckland night express plunged into the flooded Whangaehu River just west of Tangiwai, 8 km west of Waiouru. Of the 285 people on board, 151 were killed. The tragedy left a nation in mourning, and stunned the world. We then travel along the Desert Rd and in to Taihape (GUMBOOT capital of the world!!)

How far do you think you could throw a gumboot? We then head into the very pretty city of Whanganui where we spend the next two nights. We stay in the heart of the city at the Kingsgate hotel.

Day 3: Whanganui (B L SD)

Enjoy breakfast and then its time to enjoy this beautiful city with its unique blend of heritage architecture and cutting edge creativity. We start with a drive to the wonderful Bason Botanic Garden where we enjoy the DRESS CIRCLE with its sheltered homestead featuring herb gardens, orchid, begonia and tropical plantings. We then head to the Riverside. A cruise aboard the iconic paddle steamer Waimarie is undoubtedly one of the most authentic ways to experience Whanganui Rivers scenery and history. Salvaged from the bottom of the Whanganui River where she sat for around 50 years, the Paddle Steamer Waimarie was restored to her former glory and re-launched in 2000 to make her New Zealand’s only authentic coal-fired paddle steamer in operation. Today, we can but dream of the hustle and bustle of the trading settlers and iwi who knew the Paddle Steamer Waimarie of old. Instead we can enjoy her resurrection with a leisurely river cruise more fitting to her stately grace. Enjoy a cruise on the River with an interesting commentary sharing the history of the River while enjoying a light lunch. Tonight we enjoy dinner in the heart of the city at the historic Rutland Hotel.

Day 4: Whanganui-Martinborough (B D)

After breakfast we join our coach and travel via Palmerston North to Pukaha National Wildlife Centre where we enjoy a gentle walk through the towering bush and take in a variety of New Zealand Wildlife in their enclosures. Pukaha is well known for their amazing conservation work. We have time to enjoy lunch here as well in Kaka Café (own expense). We then journey on to our very own Stonehenge. Stonehenge Aotearoa, is a practical, open-sky observatory inspired by and built on a similar scale to the famous Stonehenge in England. The henge is a modern adaptation, inspired by the many stone circles and henges scattered around the world. Wander at your own pace on a self-guided tour to learn about its link with the past, with ancient civilisations and Māori star lore, Polynesian navigation and archeoastronomy.

We then journey on to our home for the next two nights in Martinborough—Peppers Parahau. Here we enjoy our own villa set in the attractive grounds. Join your Tour Manager for dinner tonight.

Day 5: Martinborough (B LL D)

A relaxing start to the day before heading to Kahikatea Gardens to enjoy a wander round this beautiful garden and meet the very cute local residents. Time then for some retail therapy in Greytown with its delightful quirky shops and cafes. We head to renowned Tirohana Estate where we enjoy a wine tasting and a light lunch in the vines. We return to Peppers in time for a relax in the bar or perhaps a game of Petanque. Dinner in the hotel restaurant before retiring to our Villas. A lovely end to the tour.

Day 6: Martinborough-Wellington-Home (B)

We farewell the Wairarapa and join our coach for the drive over the Rimutakas to the Capital city of Wellington. Here we enjoy a sightseeing tour including Mt Victoria and Oriental Bay. The coach will stop at Te Papa and there will be time for a visit and to have lunch (own expense) before we head out to the airport for our flight back to our home city.