Drive Round NZ - Self Drive tours around New Zealand - Best Advice, Best Tours, the Best


Select a start city to view interesting and valuable advice and information Self drive tours from Auckland - North Island of New Zealand Self drive tours from Christchurch - South Island of New Zealand




South Island Highlights Tour
9 days
Explore the highlights of the South Island in 9 days and some of the best driving in the region.

South Island Experience Tour
13 days
All of the South Island in 13 days spectacular days.


Twin Island Tour
14 days
Christchurch to Auckland via all the most spectacular scenery and driving roads of the South and North Islands in 14 days.

Ultimate Islands Tour
21 days
The best of the best. See all of the best of what New Zealand has to offer!


  • Great accommodation in nice 3.5 to 4 star B&Bs / motels / hotels

  • Google Maps links showing you the exact route to take for each day’s drive

  • Official hard copy road maps of the areas you’ll be passing through

  • A thorough and very detailed itinerary document incorporating:

  • Daily trip sections
    The background to each area
    Places of interest and where to visit

Please note: We don't include the car in the prices as there are so many choices. You can either book your own car or we'd be pleased to do it for you.

Auckland and the North Island of New Zealand
Auckland and the North Island

Area highlights:
Auckland city, Bay of Islands, Cape Reinga, Coromandel Peninsula, Bay of Plenty, Te Urewera National Park, Hawkes Bay & Napier, Wellington, Mt Tongariro National Park, Lake Taupo, Rotorua and Mt Taranaki. All of this is linked by some of the best driving roads on the planet - perfectly surfaced, empty, twisting ribbons of tarmac!

 New Zealand (Photo by Andras Ikladi)

Tours from Auckland...

You'll find everything you need on this website to make planning your tour in New Zealand really easy...!

We are not here just to provide you with a tour. We have an intimate knowledge of most areas of New Zealand and are here to advise on routes, distances, accommodation, places of interest and general background information. Please ask us to help plan your trip. We'll be really pleased to help! Start your trip from Auckland Start your trip from Christchurch

What can I see and do on the North Island? Read on.....

Auckland's Sky Tower at nightAuckland is a modern, bustling cosmopolitan city offering all the attractions you'll associate with city life. Relatively small by world standards with a population of some 1.2 million, it can easily explored on foot. The geographical gods really pulled out all the stops when they created it, with two stunning harbours alongside a narrow spit of land, interspersed with volcanic cones. Yes you read right - volcanoes. It should really be called the City of Volcanoes as it's built on about 50 of them, but instead its harbours take the glory and earned it the nickname of the City of Sails. You'll find nearly 140,000 pleasure craft in its marinas! It's the largest city in New Zealand, yet deserted beaches, wineries, dense rainforest and wildlife reserves can all be reached within an hour. Spend a few days in Auckland before or after your trip and explore the commercial heart along Queen Street, Mt Eden's volcanic cone with superb city views, Auckland Art Gallery, Kelly Tarlton's Antarctic Encounter and Underwater World, the Sky Tower and cruise on Waitemata and Manukau Harbours. And spend an afternoon or evening at Viaduct Harbour with its superb restuarants, great pubs and lively nightlife too!

Further afield there's the Hauraki Gulf Islands of Rangitoto, Motutapu and spectacular Waiheke with its rocky bays, sandy beaches and boutique wineries. All of these islands are just a 30-minute ferry ride from Auckland's CBD! Great Barrier Island offers a back-to-basics experience as there's no electricity supply, which means no banks, ATMs, supermarkets or street lights.

Cathedral CoveVenturing further north of Auckland will take you to the Bay of Islands. Undoubtedly one of the most scenic places in the country, its beaches, watersports and spectacular coastline is a major tourist attraction. Be prepared to get wet and enjoy the subtropical climate! It's also of extreme historic significance as the site of the first permanent European settlement in New Zealand. In 1835 the Declaration of Independence of New Zealand was signed here by local chiefs as was the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840 which established British sovereignty over the islands. At the far northern tip is Cape Reinga where the Tasman Sea and Pacific Ocean meet. It's also home to one of the most sacred sites of the Maori people. On the western side is 90 Mile Beach and further south Waipoua Forest contains most of the remaining giant kauri trees in the country, now considered a national treasure.

Traditional Maori carving (Photo by Andras Ikladi)The Coromandel Peninsula attracts many tourists too, notably for its charming heritage towns and superb white-sand beaches. The coastline is undeniably scenic and there's the famous Hot Water Beach, where thermally heated water oozes up through the sand for two hours on either side of low tide. Dig a hole in the sand and you have your own thermal spa pool!

Southeast of the Coromandel is where you'll find Rotorua and the Bay of Plenty, where Maori tradition remains strong and the language is spoken daily. In Rotorua the culture is accessible, with performances for tourists as much an attraction as the thermal waters, geysers and springs of the area. The Bay of Plenty also has stunning beaches and coastline, combined with (some say) the most sunshine hours anywhere in New Zealand.

The far east coast has more cultural experiences in store - wine and architecture! Hawke's Bay is home to some of the best wineries in New Zealand, producing world-class reds and whites. In Napier you'll witness some of the best-preserved art deco architecture anywhere in the world. And if you want to get off the beaten track, Te Urewera National Park is wild, remote and rugged, with spectacular walks among rivers, lakes and virgin forest.

A massive volcanic eruption some 26,000 years ago created Lake Taupo, at 606 square km the largest in New Zealand. Now best known for watersports and as the 'Trout Fishing Capital of the World', it has plenty of facilities and activities to appeal to any traveller.

Mt TongariroSouth of Taupo is the Central Plateau, where Tongariro National Park is home to three towering volcanic peaks. Mt Tongariro and its sisters, Mt Ruapehu and Mt Ngauruhoe was the setting for 'Mordor' and 'Mt Doom' in the Lord of the Rings film trilogy. The area offers some of the best short walks in New Zealand and is a very popular skiing destination in winter.

Wellington is New Zealand's capital and sits on a spectacular harbour at the southern end of the North Island. Its beautiful Victorian architecture and top restaurants, bars, art galleries and theatres gives it a cultured, artistic feel. It has a lively nightlife and performing arts scene but great outdoor activities are less than an hour away.

Rugged beaches (Photo by Andras Ikladi)
In summary
, we're here to help make it as easy as possible for you to arrange your tour in New Zealand so that you make the most of your time whilst here. You'll be taken great care of from the moment you first enquire to the day you hand back your keys. If some expert advice and help would help you plan your tour of New Zealand then just ask! 99% of the time we will come back to you within 24 hours of your enquiry - usually less depending on where you're located in the world. We love New Zealand, know most areas intimately and hope that our advice helps you to leave with the same passion for the country as we have.

Thanks for your interest and we hope to welcome you to New Zealand sometime soon!