North Island Driving Holidays

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Driving Holidays in the North Island provide many opportunities for adventure and enjoying the unique scenery. In subtropical Northland proud forests of majestic kauri trees, some thousands of years old, share space with remnants of its gum digging past. Gnarled pohutukawa cling to windswept cliffs over golden beaches, and green rolling hills of farmland span across the island from coast to coast. Although the North Island’s land mass is smaller than that of the South Island, it boasts a longer coastline with hundreds of deep tranquil harbours, estuaries and inlets with sheltered, sandy bays providing safe anchorage for boats.

Thermal activity abounds: there’s Rotorua, a hotbed of fiery fury with its boiling mud pools, geysers, springs and spas; White Island, an active volcano in the Bay of Plenty; and volcanic Auckland whose 50 or so ‘hills’ are also the result of volcanic activity. Hot springs are dotted throughout the North Island and one of the country’s most unique experiences is to dig your own warm spa in the sand at Te Puia Springs in Kawhia, or at the Coromandel Peninsula’s aptly named Hot Water Beach.

At the heart of the North Island, lie the crystal-clear waters of Lake Taupo, New Zealand’s largest lake, itself a huge volcanic crater fed by the mountains of the Central Plateau. These formidable mountains - Tongariro, Ngauruhoe and Ruapehu - are encircled by dry, desert like plains that contrast dramatically with the surrounding fertile farmlands. To the west a bulbous coastline horseshoes around Mt Taranaki, while to the east lies the seldom- explored East Cape. Hidden beneath hills beside the Wellington Harbour, also formed by volcanic eruption and now filled with sea, the capital city of Wellington is the departure point to the magnificent South Island.

Enjoy your North Island driving holiday from the comfort of an Apex rental car and explore at your own pace. Car hire is available from the following North Island rental locations; Auckland Airport Car Rental, Auckland City Car Rental, Tauranga Airport Car Rental, Napier Car Rental, Wellington Airport Car Rental, and Wellington City Car Rental, so book your car today and start exploring.

Use the following North Island road trips to help inspire your next self-drive holiday: