This tour really has it all!

Spring Escape - Western North Island

Raglan Sunset

The ultimate exploration of the far reaches of the central North Island’s West Coast and beyond.

There’s something for everyone on this perfect spring escape. Reacquaint with nature after the cold of winter, and revel in the beautiful scenery and colourful landscapes, feast on a diverse range of delicacies from gourmet teas to freshly shucked oysters, and travel in comfort via coach, train and boat. This tour really has it all!


Is this tour for me?
Reserve your spot

There is limited availability for this tour.
Please contact us to find out more.

From
 
$3,495
 
per person
$500
 
initial deposit
From
 
$3,495
 
per person
$500
 
initial deposit
Request more info

*Custom departure points available for all tours

What’s included?
6 nights accommodation
18 amazing activities
Comfortable tour coach
Expert tour guide
Delicious meals provided (exclusions apply)
General level of fitness required

Tour highlights

Itinerary

Day 1

Home - New Plymouth

Home (November 13th)

If departing from Whanganui meet at the Whanganui Racecourse for an 8am departure, and head north into south Taranaki. The first stop will be at the informal and intimate Hollard Gardens where you have a chance to enjoy some of the huge variety of native and exotic plants, while enjoying a home baked morning tea.

Next stop is Port Taranaki where we are welcomed aboard Rescue III, a 1950's wooden rescue boat, at Chaddy's Charters. We head out to explore the coast to learn about the extensive history and visit New Zealand fur seals.

Pukeiti Gardens

We then head to the coast to travel the surf highway around the impressive Mount Taranaki. If time permits, we will duck off the beaten track to view the Cape Egmont Lighthouse before continuing around to encounter the mystery of Pukeiti Gardens. Here, we have a guided tour where you will be able to experience one of the world’s largest and most diverse collections of rhododendrons and other exotics, creating an explosion of colour among lush, native rainforest and mountain streams. We have a lovely lunch organized at the Rainforest Eatery nestled in the heart of Pukeiti before continuing on our way.

Next stop is Port Taranaki where we are welcomed aboard Rescue III, a 1950's wooden rescue boat, at Chaddy's Charters. We head out to explore the coast to learn about the extensive history and visit New Zealand fur seals.

New Plymouth

It is then into the CBD of New Plymouth to our great waterfront accommodation with panoramic views of the Tasman Sea. Overlooking Len Lye´s Wind Wand and the Coastal Foreshore Walkway, this is the perfect place to stretch our legs before meeting for our first group dinner on site.

Accommodation: Millennium Hotel Waterfront

Day 2

New Plymouth - Raglan

New Plymouth (November 14th)

After a scrumptious breakfast, we continue our way up the coast passing through small settlements such as Urenui and over Mount Messenger to the beautiful little coastal settlement of Tongapōrutu. We will pass the colourful Kiwi-classic baches lining the river, and if conditions are right we will get to view the Three Sisters and the Elephant Rock.


Waitomo Glowworms Caves

From here, it is a short drive to Mokau which is situated at the mouth of the famous whitebaiting Mokau River. Here we will enjoy a whitebait morning tea locally caught before heading deep into the rolling hills of King Country.

Our next stop is the small village of Waitomo where we will enjoy lunch at the discovery centre before experiencing the magic of the Waitomo Glowworms Caves, one of NZ’s best natural attractions. It is known for its extensive underground cave systems where thousands of glow-worms light up the Glowworm Caves, and we will be guided through part of the cave system which is an extremely educational experience.

Then we continue west towards the coast getting well off the beaten track until we reach the highlight of this scenic drive, Mangapohue Natural Bridge. It is a short walk through an impressive limestone gorge that passes underneath a 17m high natural arch which spans the Mangapohue Stream. It is all that remains of an ancient cave system, and well worth the little effort getting there.

Returning to more familiar roads we weave our way north around the Pirongia Forest Park and head out to the lively surf town of Raglan.  This small town is both a surfing mecca and a dramatically scenic area of black sand coastline.


Raglan

Upon arrival we head down to the harbour to board ‘Wahinemoe’, a purpose built catamaran, for a relaxing Sunset Dinner Cruise. As we enjoy our Fish & Chip meal we explore the harbours’ hidden bays and get deep into the upper reaches of  Whaingaroa (Raglan Harbour).

Back on dry land, it is a short drive to our accommodation to rest our heads for the night.

Accommodation: Sunset Motel

Day 3

Raglan - Waiuku

Raglan (November 15th)

Bags packed ready for another day of exploring we head to the spectacular 55-metre-high Bridal Veil Falls. It is an easy 10 minute walk through native bush, following the Pakoka River to two viewing platforms at the top, both providing stunning vistas and ample photo opportunities of the plunging white falls flanked by grey rock and green bush.


Manukau Heads Lighthouse

Heading north, we take the back roads up through Huntly and on to Mercer where we have a great lunch lined up. With tummies full we follow the mighty Waikato River to the mouth where it empties into the Tasman sea at Port Waikato. We head down to Sunset Beach to take in the beautiful surroundings before continuing north to the Āwhitu Peninsula which extends from the north from the mouth of the Waikato River to the entrance to Manukau Harbour.

Our next destination is the historical Manukau Heads Lighthouse, jutting out from the tip of the peninsula. With vast panoramas and sweeping coastlines - the journey is as good as the destination. Here we take a tactile tour of the lighthouse, absorb the magnificent panorama, and take a walk through time with the tragic tale of the HMS Orpheus, New Zealand’s worst shipwreck disaster.



Waiuku

We then venture back down the peninsula to Karioitahi Beach where we will be spending the night at the spectacular Castaway Resort situated on the wild coastal cliff tops. You will have time to stretch your legs along the beach before meeting for another great group dinner.

Accommodation: Castaway Resort

Day 4

Waiuku - Matakana

Waiuku (November 16th)

After another hearty breakfast, it is just a short drive inland to the historic Glenbrook Vintage Railway, Which was founded in 1970 to preserve, rebuild, and operate the old Waiuku Branch Railway between Glenbrook and Waiuku. On the return journey to Glenbrook, the train will stop for 15 minutes at the Pukeoware Workshops for you to inspect the restoration projects and to get a closer look at the locomotive.


Helensville

After this historic journey we continue north taking the western route around Auckland to Helensville. Here, we board the M.V. Kewpie Too vessel to cruise the mighty Kaipara Harbour. As we explore the largest harbour in the Southern Hemisphere, we will enjoy a picnic style lunch taking in the informative commentary and great views.

It is then time to leave the West Coast and head over to the East Coast taking the back road through Warkworth to the lovely village of Matakana. We head to the world-class tourist attraction, Sculptureum. With three sculpture-filled gardens, six art galleries, and a vineyard, there is something for everyone.



Matakana

A short drive sees us arrive at our accommodation in the centre of the village with time for some R & R before heading out for dinner at a highly rated restaurant.

Accommodation: Matakana Motel

Day 5

Matakana – Manakau

Matakana (November 17th)

This morning, we head out to a cafe for a delicious breakfast before meeting for our first adventure for the day. 


We board the Discovery River Cruise leaving from the heart of Matakana. This boutique cruise is tailor-made for peak relaxation. Sit back, relax and learn from Captain Phil as he gives us an informative, amusing commentary on the way down the Matakana River, showcasing the history and tidal environment of mangroves, native bush and farmland. We turn around where the green of the upper fresh meets the vibrant blue water of Sandspit Basin.

Scott's Landing

We then head south for the short drive to Scott's Landing, nestled in the Mahurangi Harbour to board New Zealand's only Oyster Farm tour cruise. 

We cruise to the Historic G Browns Bay which is rich in history, as the first area oyster farming started in New Zealand.  The bay still thrives with Oyster farms growing the popular Pacific Oyster species.

We will collect fresh oysters straight from the water, the skipper will teach you how to open them, while you have a go yourself. He will even cook some on the BBQ, or fresh of course, for those who would like to indulge. 

After this great morning of cruising fantastic waterways, we head down into the beach-side town of Orewa where you will be given some free time to grab yourself some lunch, browse the shops, or relax on the beautiful beach.


Our final visit of the day allows us to stretch our legs and explore some of the 64 hectares of beautiful gardens and native forest at the Auckland Botanic Gardens. This will be self guided so you can see and do as much as you desire.

Manakau

It is then a short drive to our accommodation for the night near the Manakau city centre which is where we also dine this evening.

Accommodation: Ramada Suites

Day 6

Manakau - Taumarunui

Manakau (November 18th)

Ready for another day of exploring, we pack up the coach and head to the Papakura train station to catch New Zealand's longest running passenger service train. We board the Northern Explorer down to Hamilton where the coach will be waiting to collect you.


Hamilton

You will then be taken out to enjoy the ultimate in luxury at Zealong Tea Estate, with their own unique blend of New Zealand hospitality. Widely regarded as a Waikato icon, Zealong Tea Estate is the only commercial tea estate in New Zealand, producing 100% organic award-winning tea, and a world-leading destination for tea, art, and hospitality. Here, we will partake in a great tour which includes tea tasting and a High Tea culinary experience like no other.  


Taumarunui

We then head south down to the kiwiana town of Otorohanga where we visit the Otorohanga Kiwi House & Native Bird Park. We will have our own personalised guided wildlife experience as we get up close with the large collection of NZ birds and reptiles, which includes walking through New Zealand's largest free-flight dome aviary and seeing the unique tuatara. 

Final leg of the day will see us journey down to Taumarunui, set within rugged terrain on the upper reaches of the Whanganui River. After checking into our accommodation, we head out for our final group dinner.

Accommodation: Twin Rivers Motel

Day 7

Taumarunui - Whanganui

Taumarunui (November 18th)

An earlier start to the day, but it will all be well worth it as we head to discover the Forgotten World with Forgotten World Adventures.

Prepare to marvel at the determination and hardship that was endured as you travel 40km by Rail Cart into the Forgotten World through 10 hand dug tunnels and over 25 bridges. We will enjoy a lovely Ploughman's lunch in Tokirima and stop over at Lauren's Lavender Farm.


Tongariro National Park

We then continue our way south into New Zealand's oldest national park, Tongariro National Park which is a dual World Heritage area. We drive up the Bruce Road to experience New Zealand's most unique gondola experience. We journey up to the clouds on the new Sky Waka which travels 1.8km through one of the North Island’s most rugged and spectacular landscapes on Whakapapa, Mt Ruapehu.


Home

We have afternoon tea at New Zealand’s  highest dining experience, Knoll Ridge Chalet, talking in the spectacular views and sharing stories of this fantastic tour  before making our way back down the mountain and home to Whanganui.

Optional extras

No items found.

Meet your tour guides

Jason Granville

After years in the broadcasting industry, Jase hung up his headphones to run Take It Easy Tours. This has meant he can still pick up the microphone to inform travellers and encourage friendly banter while on tour.

Jimmy Elliott

Jimmy has a wealth of experience and uses this to ensure all trips with Take It Easy Tours are well organised, informative, diverse and a whole heap of fun.

Reserve your spot

$500
 
initial deposit
Payment plans available
from
 
$3,495
 
per person

There is limited availability for this tour. Please contact us to find out more.

Frequently asked questions

Can you collect me from my door?

Yes, it would be our pleasure. We can arrange for you to be picked up and returned to your front door at the conclusion of any tour.

How about travel insurance?

We strongly recommend taking out travel insurance as soon as you book your trip. It just puts your mind at ease. Remember to make sure you are covered for and loss of personal possessions, sickness, accidents or travel delays. Feel free to ask us for any tips to make this quick and easy for you.

How active are your tours?

We are called Take it Easy for a reason as we like to do just that. Do as much or as little as you like - after all it's your holiday! However, there is walking and various activities on each tour that require various levels of fitness. Please check with us if you are unsure about anything and relax knowing that there's always another option for you if you would rather miss out on any activity. We always have a back up plan.

I have some dietary requirements?

Please just let us know in advance and we will sort everything for you. Chefs are used to all sorts now when it comes to diet so as long as we know - we’ll have you covered.

What happens if I have to cancel?

Cancellation charges do apply so again we recommend travel insurance. Our cancellation policy is clearly outlined for each tour so make sure you cast your eye over it and please feel free to ask any questions.

What kind of accommodation do we stay in?

Having a good night's rest after a day out touring is very important so we personally choose all of our accommodation. Generally, four star accommodation when available - with all the comforts you need for a relaxed night.

What types of transport do we use?

Our buses are quality touring coaches that are very comfortable and fully air conditioned. They range in size from 19-28 seats ensuring that we can easily access all those secret spots off the beaten track. All vehicles are regularly serviced as your safety is our priority.

Coaches and luggage trailers are always locked and secure but we recommended you take any valuables with you when staying overnight.

Still have questions?

Get in touch with our friendly staff

What our customers say

Other tours you might enjoy

Chatham Islands
20th -27th April
7
days
Adults & seniors
7
days
Students

A special part of the world. Experience a unique part of New Zealand's heritage in this remote ocean-bound wilderness that will leave a lasting impression.

from 
$5,250
 per person
Northern Explorer
26th January - 3rd February
9
days
Adults & seniors
9
days
Students

Northland blends history, cultural heritage and stunning coastline. On this expedition of New Zealand's northern reaches, we experience it all!

from 
$3,395
 per person
Mystery Uncovered - Bay Of Plenty
22nd - 26th November
5
days
Adults & seniors
5
days
Students

Time to reveal what we got up to on our inaugural ‘Mystery Tour’

from 
$2,395
 per person