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The 10 Best New Zealand Tours Starting from Auckland šŸ—» [2022]

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The Top Bus and Coach Tours of New Zealand From Auckland

Auckland is where most of us arrive when visiting New Zealand. It’s the cheapest airport to arrive at, so it only makes sense to start a tour from there. Luckily, there’s a huge range of tour companies starting their tours in Auckland, whether it’s a one-week loop of the North Island or a full tour of New Zealand. Furthermore, there are tours to suit all types of travellers, whether you want to travel with a small group, jump on a party bus or be with like-minded travellers on a luxury tour. We list some of our favourite New Zealand tours starting in Auckland right here.

Alternatively, see The New Zealand Tours Starting in Christchurch, The New Zealand Tours Starting in Queenstown and The New Zealand Tours Starting in Wellington. Plus, find out more about exploring by bus in Travel by Bus in New Zealand: The Ultimate Guide.

5 Tips for Starting a Tour From Auckland

  1. Allow a day or two before and/or after your tour for your travel time to New Zealand, as well as get over the jet lag and explore Auckland – see 10 Auckland Must-Dos
  2. See if your tour includes airport transfers, as most tours depart in Auckland city centre, which is around 45 minutes drive from the airport – see Cheapest Airport Transfer Options for Auckland Airport
  3. Be sure to budget for meals throughout your trip, including your first and last nights in Auckland where many of the tours don’t have meals included – see How Much Does a Trip to New Zealand Cost?
  4. See if your chosen tour company has a Facebook Group. That way, you can organise to meet fellow travellers in Auckland before your tour departs
  5. Note that not all tours that start in Auckland end in Auckland. Either choose a tour that loops back to Auckland or book a domestic flight or coach trip from your tour’s end city to get back to Auckland.

For more tour advice, check out the 15 Tips to Make the Most of Your Bus Trip.

G Adventures© G Adventures

G Adventures – North Island Multisport

For the traveller who prefers to experience a place by “doing” more than just “seeing”, G Adventures offers an epic adventure on their North Island Multisport tour. The tour conveniently starts and ends in Auckland, taking active travellers to highlights like Rotorua, Tongariro and Whanganui National Park taking part in activities like mountain biking, hiking and canoeing. You’ll also get most meals included too, as well as accommodation in a mix of hotels, a Maori village and lodges.

Tour Highlights

Tour Length: 8 days
Age Range
: 12-99-year-olds
Maximum Group Size: 16
Accommodation: Hotels, Maori village and lodges
Meals: Five breakfasts, three lunches and three dinners

Destinations

Find out more about this tour by comparing G Adventures on Tourradar. See more week tours of the North Island in The Best 7-Day Tours of the North Island.

Wild Kiwi© Wild Kiwi

Wild Kiwi – Northern Voyager

Explore the North Island with other young travellers on the Wild Kiwi adventure tour. This tour with a difference takes to some of the highlights of the North Island in a luxury Mercedes van in a small group. Accommodation is included in dorm-style rooms and also includes all breakfasts. You’ll also have a few usually paid activities included in your trip, such as Wai-O-Tapu Geothermal Park, surf lessons in Raglan and more. The trip starts and ends in Auckland, making it easy to arrange flights.

Check out a complete review of Wild Kiwi over at What is it Really Like to Travel With Wild Kiwi?

Tour Highlights

Tour Length: 7 days
Age Range
: 18-35-year-olds
Maximum Group Size: 18
Accommodation: Hostels and lodges
Meals: All breakfasts and one dinner

Destinations

Find out more about this tour by comparing Wild Kiwi on Tourradar. See more small-group adventures like this in The Best Small-Group Tours in New Zealand.

AAT Kings© AAT Kings

AAT Kings – Iconic North

A tour for all ages, but mostly seniors and families, Northern Discovery with AAT Kings is well worth considering to visit the North Island. The slower-paced 7-day tour allows travellers to spend more time making the most of each location visited. Stay in luxurious hotels in each destination and enjoy the ease of airport transfers and some dinners with wine. The tour starts in Auckland and ends in Wellington.

Tour Highlights

Tour Length: 7 days
Age Range
: 5-99-year-olds
Maximum Group Size: 50
Accommodation: 4-star and 5-star hotels
Meals: All breakfasts, one lunch and three dinners

Destinations

Find out more about this tour by comparing AAT Kings on Tourradar. See more 7-day trips of New Zealand in The 10 Best 7-Day Tours of New Zealand.

The 5 Best New Zealand Tours Starting From Auckland šŸ—» [2022]© Haka Tours

Haka Tours ā€“ Northern Trail

From Auckland to Wellington, zig-zag your way through the North Island with Haka Tours. Their Northern Trail tour has you visiting the surfer town of Raglan, checking out the Waitomo Caves, watching a Maori cultural performance in Rotorua, seeing kiwi birds and the super-clear Te Waihou Springs, staying in the Tongariro National Park and much more! This small-group adults-only tour includes some breakfasts and dinners, as well as accommodation in a mix of three and four-star hotels, motels and lodges. Note that there is also a ā€œreverseā€ itinerary of this tour, should you want to start in Wellington and end in Auckland instead.

Tour Highlights

Tour Length: 10 days
Age Range
: 30-70-year-olds
Maximum Group Size: 11
Accommodation: Hotels, motels and lodges
Meals: Five breakfasts and two dinners

Destinations

Find out more about this tour and prices on the Haka Tours page of Tourradar. Check out more small-group adventures in The Best Small-Group Tours in New Zealand.

The 5 Best New Zealand Tours Starting from Auckland šŸ—» [2022]© Exodus Travels

Exodus Travels ā€“ Trekking in New Zealand

Explore both New Zealand islands with a small group on the Trekking in New Zealand tour. This 19-day hiking tour with Exodus Travels starts in Auckland and ends in Christchurch, taking you to hiking highlights like the Tongariro National Park, Milford Sound and the Fox Glacier. All activities listed in the action-packed itinerary are included in the tour, such as a heli-hike in Mt Aspiring National Park, a short flight between Wellington and Nelson, and a water taxi cruise in the Abel Tasman National Park. All meals and accommodation are also included in the rate.

Tour Highlights

Tour Length: 19 days
Age Range
: 16+ years old
Maximum Group Size: 11
Accommodation: Hotels, lodges, cabins and huts/camping
Meals: 16 breakfasts, 17 lunches and seven dinners

Destinations

Find out more about this tour by comparing Exodus Travels on Tourradar. Plus, check out more tours with a small group count in The Best Small-Group Tours in New Zealand.

The 5 Best New Zealand Tours Starting from Auckland šŸ—» [2022]© Flying Kiwi

Flying Kiwi ā€“ Northern Light

Explore the heart of the North Island on the Northern Light Tour with Flying Kiwi. This 5-day bus tour starting in Auckland and ending in Wellington takes active travellers on an adventure to the Coromandel where youā€™ll dig your own thermal pool, to the geothermal Rotorua and its geysers at Wai-O-Tapu, to the Tongariro Crossing or opt for some mountain biking, and much more is included in the itinerary!

Note: Tours return in 2023.

About Flying Kiwiā€™s Tours

Age Range: 16-65-year-olds
Maximum Group Size: 26
Accommodation: Camping or cabin
Meals: Four breakfasts, two lunches and three dinners

Destinations

Find out more about this tour and prices by checking out the Flying Kiwi on Tourradar. Plus, learn more about how Flying Kiwi work in That New Zealand Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Youā€™ve Never Heard Of.

The 5 Best New Zealand Tours Starting from Auckland šŸ—» [2022]© Inspiring Journeys

Inspiring Journeys ā€“ Inspiring New Zealand

Combine sightseeing on the North Island with exploring the south of the South Island with Inspiring Journeys. The 10-day small-group tour, which appeals to the more active mature crowd, starts in Auckland. Youā€™ll journey to the geothermal and Maori hub of Rotorua then onto New Zealandā€™s capital, Wellington. Catch a flight to Queenstown (not included) where youā€™ll have the ease of an airport transfer and the opportunity to cruise Doubtful Sound and explore Queenstown your way. Tours also include luxurious hotel accommodation, most meals and more.

Tour Highlights

Tour Length: 10 days
Age Range
: 12-99-year-olds
Maximum Group Size: 20
Accommodation: Hotels
Meals: Eight breakfasts, two lunches and six dinners

Destinations

Find out more about this tour by comparing Inspiring Journeys on Tourradar. Plus, see more tours for seniors in The Best New Zealand Tours for Seniors.

The 5 Best New Zealand Tours Starting from Auckland šŸ—» [2022]© Trafalgar

Trafalgar ā€“ Iconic North

A tour for all ages, Trafalgarā€˜s Iconic North tour takes passengers to the North Islandā€™s bustling hubs of AucklandTaurangaRotorua and Wellington. This tour is slower-paced compared to others featured on this list, allowing you more time to explore each destination at leisure and join your tour guide for city sightseeing tours. Accommodation is included, featuring upmarket hotels, while all breakfasts and a few other meals are also part of the tour.

This tour also appeals to an older crowd, so take a look at The Best New Zealand Tours for Seniors to see how it compares.

About Trafalgarā€™s Tours

Age Range: 5-99-year-olds
Maximum Group Size: 48
Accommodation: Hotels
Meals: All breakfasts, one lunch and three dinners

Destinations

Find out more about this tour by comparing Trafalgar on Tourradar.

The 5 Best New Zealand Tours Starting from Auckland šŸ—» [2022]© Contiki

Contiki ā€“ Sun & Steam

Hit the road with other young travellers on the Sun & Steam tour with Contiki! Contiki offers an alternative itinerary of the North Island, getting you to explore the ancient kauri forest and beautiful beaches of Northland and the Bay of Islands, before making your way to the geothermal hotspot of Rotorua. Youā€™ll be staying in shared rooms in hostels with your tour mates, as well as enjoy breakfast included each morning and a couple of dinners. Whatā€™s more, this tour actually lasts six days, so youā€™ll have time to relax at either the beginning or end of your tour.

About Contikiā€™s Tours

Age Range: 18-35-year-olds
Maximum Group Size: 12
Accommodation: Hostels
Meals: All breakfasts and two dinners

Destinations

Find out more about this tour by comparing Contiki on Tourradar.

The 5 Best New Zealand Tours Starting From Auckland šŸ—» [2022]© Intrepid Travel

Intrepid Travel (Haka Tours) ā€“ New Zealand Northern Trail

Note that Haka Tours now runs this tour for Intrepid Travel. 

With a ā€œnorthboundā€ and a ā€œsouthboundā€ route, you can travel on the New Zealand Northern Trail with Intrepid Travel either starting in Auckland or Wellington. Thatā€™s not all there is about this 10-day tour of New Zealand from Auckland, with all the highlights, from volcanic landscapes to the Maori culture and everything in between all squeezed in. Plus, with not a huge passenger count yet plenty of opportunities to meet new and interesting travellers and locals, this bus tour offers the ā€œjust rightā€ experience.

Tour Highlights

Tour Length: 10 days
Age Range
: 18-99-year-olds
Maximum Group Size: 16
Accommodation: Hotels, motels and lodges
Meals: 9 breakfasts and two dinners

Destinations

Find out more about this tour and prices by comparing Intrepid Travel on Tourradar. For more 10-day New Zealand tours from Auckland, check out The 5 Best 10-12-Day Tours of the North Island.

Kiwi Vibes© Kiwi Vibes

[SUSPENDED] Kiwi Vibes – The Full Frontal

Kiwi Vibes has suspended tours due to COVID and are yet to announce its reopening. We will update this page if and when tours with Kiwi Vibes become available again. 

Travel both islands of New Zealand on this epic tour for 18-30-year-olds with Kiwi Vibes. The Full Frontal tour that operates in New Zealand summer, showcases heaps of destinations across the North Island and the South Island in 22 days. What’s more, all hostel accommodation is included, as well as most meals! Guides are local giving you the real Kiwi experience.

Tour Highlights

Tour Length: 22 days
Age Range
: 18-35-year-olds
Maximum Group Size: 30
Accommodation: Hostels
Meals: All breakfasts, four lunches and seven dinners

Destinations

  • Auckland
  • Coromandel
  • Tauranga/Mt Maunganui
  • Rotorua
  • Taupo
  • Wellington
  • Kaikoura
  • Hokitika
  • Franz Josef
  • Queenstown
  • Twizel
  • Christchurch
  • New Plymouth
  • Raglan

See more tours of the whole country in The Best 20+ Days Tours of New Zealand.

More About New Zealand Bus Tours Starting From Auckland

That’s it for our list of the best New Zealand tours from Auckland. If they didn’t quite meet your criteria, how about these other tour listings?

Now that you know the best New Zealand tours starting in Auckland, find a place to stay using The 50 Best Accommodations in Auckland.

Author

Robin C.

This article was reviewed and published by Robin, the co-founder of NZ Pocket Guide. He has lived, worked and travelled across 16 different countries before calling New Zealand home. He has now spent over a decade in the New Zealand tourism industry, clocking in more than 600 activities across the country. He is passionate about sharing those experiences and advice on NZ Pocket Guide and its YouTube channel. Robin is also the co-founder of several other South Pacific travel guides.

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