Bridge to Nowhere and Forgotten Worlds

7 days / 6 nights
From NZ$3,190 per person NZ$3,790 Single
NZ$3,790 Single

The tour follows river, rail and walking tracks through the central North Island.  Enjoy an inland adventure on the Whangamomona Rail Carts and cruise the Whanganui River.  Then taken in the delights of Hawkes Bay via the historic "Gentle Annie" route.

Highlights

  • Visit the Rangiriri Cultural and Heritage Centre
  • Ride the rail carts on a Forgotten World adventure
  • Visit Lauren’s Lavender Farm beside the Whanganui River
  • Bridge to Nowhere Jet Boat up the Whanganui River
  • Cruise on the restored Hatrick Paddle Steamer,”Waimarie”
  • Explore the Forgotton World Highway
  • Drive beside the Whanganui River from Pipiriki to Jerusalem and on to Whanganui
  • Climb the Gentle Annie road over the Central Plateau
  • Follow Napier’s Art Deco Trail with a local guide
  • Check out the stalls at the Hawkes Bay Farmers’ Market

Departure Dates

5 April 2020

Day 1:  Auckland - Taumarunui
Leaving Auckland, we meet a local guide at the Rangiriri Cultural and Heritage Centre for an insight into the 1863 invasion of the Waikato.

Further south we stop for lunch with Debbie and Fraser Robertson at Crosshills Farm. Later in the day, we reach Taumarunui, where we stay and dine in at the Forgotten World Motel for two evenings.


Day 2:  Whangamomona - Taumarunui
We transfer to rail carts to travel for 16.5km on a one and half hour trip along the tracks and through five tunnels to Matiere.

Our awaiting coach then takes us deeper into the Forgotten World Highway to Whangamomona for lunch at the hotel. On the way back to Taumarunui we call into Lauren’s Lavender Farm beside the Whanganui River.

 

Day 3:  Taumarunui - Whanganui
At Pipiriki we meet our jet boat for an hour’s ride upstream in sublime scenery to the Mangapurua Landing to walk (optional) to the Bridge to Nowhere. Built too late to assist the WW1 servicemen who tried to farm there, it makes a poignant memorial. 

Returning to Pipiriki we drive to Jerusalem and on to Whanganui and the Quality Inn.

 

Day 4:  Whanganui - Taihape
We visit the Sarjeant Gallery, Waimarie museum and board the paddle steamer for a two-hour lunch cruise on the river.

At Putiki a local guide tells the stories of the intricate Maori carvings and wall panels of St Paul’s Memorial church. Then, turning eastward, we drive to Taihape and stay at The Aspen Court Motel. We dine at Le Café Telephonique.

 

Day 5:  Taihape - Napier
From Taihape we cross the Central Plateau to explore the Inland Patea Heritage Trail along the “Gentle Annie” travelled by the early Maori and stockmen.

There are historic sites, expansive views, a suspension bridge across the Rangitikei River and the largest sheep stations in the North Island. We stay two nights at Scenic Te Pania on the Napier waterfront.

 

Day 6:  At Napier
An Art Deco guide joins our coach to tour Marewa, the surburb built in Art Deco style after the 1931 earthquake, and the National Tobacco Company building.

We visit the Hawkes Bay Farmers’ Market in Hastings to check out local produce and artisan specialties and later drive up Bluff Hill for the views and to Otatara Pa Historic Reserve.

 

Day 7:  Napier - Auckland
We drive back northwards, stopping at the Waimungu Falls on the Napier/Taupo Road. We lunch in Taupo and stop to view the Huka Falls and the Wairakei Geothermal Power Station too. We return to Auckland through the Waikato farmlands arriving in the late afternoon.

  • All transport by comfortable, air conditioned coach (maximum of 18 travellers).
  • Services of your knowledgeable MoaTours Kiwi guide.
  • Quality accommodation chosen for a “sense of place"
  • All breakfasts & Dinners
  • All lunches (L) including special lunches at: Crosshills Farm with Debbie and Fraser Robertson; Whangamomona Hotel on the Forgotten World Highway

Description & Highlights

The tour follows river, rail and walking tracks through the central North Island.  Enjoy an inland adventure on the Whangamomona Rail Carts and cruise the Whanganui River.  Then taken in the delights of Hawkes Bay via the historic "Gentle Annie" route.

Itinerary

Day 1:  Auckland - Taumarunui
Leaving Auckland, we meet a local guide at the Rangiriri Cultural and Heritage Centre for an insight into the 1863 invasion of the Waikato.

Further south we stop for lunch with Debbie and Fraser Robertson at Crosshills Farm. Later in the day, we reach Taumarunui, where we stay and dine in at the Forgotten World Motel for two evenings.


Day 2:  Whangamomona - Taumarunui
We transfer to rail carts to travel for 16.5km on a one and half hour trip along the tracks and through five tunnels to Matiere.

Our awaiting coach then takes us deeper into the Forgotten World Highway to Whangamomona for lunch at the hotel. On the way back to Taumarunui we call into Lauren’s Lavender Farm beside the Whanganui River.

 

Day 3:  Taumarunui - Whanganui
At Pipiriki we meet our jet boat for an hour’s ride upstream in sublime scenery to the Mangapurua Landing to walk (optional) to the Bridge to Nowhere. Built too late to assist the WW1 servicemen who tried to farm there, it makes a poignant memorial. 

Returning to Pipiriki we drive to Jerusalem and on to Whanganui and the Quality Inn.

 

Day 4:  Whanganui - Taihape
We visit the Sarjeant Gallery, Waimarie museum and board the paddle steamer for a two-hour lunch cruise on the river.

At Putiki a local guide tells the stories of the intricate Maori carvings and wall panels of St Paul’s Memorial church. Then, turning eastward, we drive to Taihape and stay at The Aspen Court Motel. We dine at Le Café Telephonique.

 

Day 5:  Taihape - Napier
From Taihape we cross the Central Plateau to explore the Inland Patea Heritage Trail along the “Gentle Annie” travelled by the early Maori and stockmen.

There are historic sites, expansive views, a suspension bridge across the Rangitikei River and the largest sheep stations in the North Island. We stay two nights at Scenic Te Pania on the Napier waterfront.

 

Day 6:  At Napier
An Art Deco guide joins our coach to tour Marewa, the surburb built in Art Deco style after the 1931 earthquake, and the National Tobacco Company building.

We visit the Hawkes Bay Farmers’ Market in Hastings to check out local produce and artisan specialties and later drive up Bluff Hill for the views and to Otatara Pa Historic Reserve.

 

Day 7:  Napier - Auckland
We drive back northwards, stopping at the Waimungu Falls on the Napier/Taupo Road. We lunch in Taupo and stop to view the Huka Falls and the Wairakei Geothermal Power Station too. We return to Auckland through the Waikato farmlands arriving in the late afternoon.

Included In Package

  • All transport by comfortable, air conditioned coach (maximum of 18 travellers).
  • Services of your knowledgeable MoaTours Kiwi guide.
  • Quality accommodation chosen for a “sense of place"
  • All breakfasts & Dinners
  • All lunches (L) including special lunches at: Crosshills Farm with Debbie and Fraser Robertson; Whangamomona Hotel on the Forgotten World Highway
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