Journey into a unique part of New Zealand, first discovered by Kupe the voyager. Visit the 2.8 million year old Wairere Boulders and the Waipoua Forest, and meet a national icon, the mighty kauri tree Tāne Mahuta on a full-day tour from Paihia.
Experience an unforgettable journey into a unique part of New Zealand – the Hokianga. Visit this special region, discovered over 1,000 years ago by the Māori voyager Kupe, hear its legends, and venture into the Waipoua forest to meet the mighty kauri tree Tāne Mahuta.
Once you arrive in the Hokianga, your local Māori guide will give you a unique insight into the many myths and legends of the local hapu (sub-tribe) as you travel along the old stagecoach route, a trail first marked out by early Māori and then frequented by traders and merchants who transported supplies, kauri, gum and timber between the coasts.
Pass through the quaint villages dotting the Hokianga harbour, including the twin settlements of Omapere and Opononi (made famous in the 1950s by Opo the friendly dolphin).
Marvel at 2.8 million year old rock formations as you wind along the walkways of the unique Wairere Boulder Valley. This primeval landscape is home to thousands of massive basalt boulders, some over 30 metres high, carved by nature into stunning shapes over the years.
The Waipoua Kauri Forest provides a natural stage for an unforgettable encounter. Learn about life in the forest as your guide takes you on an intimate journey through nature and explains how the lives of local Māori are intertwined with the forest.
The forest is home to some of the most significant kauri trees still standing. Te Matua Ngahere (The Father of the Forest) is estimated to be between 2,500 and 3,000 years old, with a girth of 16 metres, while The Four Sisters are a graceful collection of kauri that have grown close together in sibling harmony.
Finally, meet a national icon, the truly impressive Tane Mahuta (the Lord of the Forest). The largest known kauri tree in the world and aged up to 2,500 years old, his mighty girth is over 13 metres and he stands an impressive 51 metres (167 feet) high. Stand beneath this ancient giant and hear the legend of how he separated earth and sky at the beginning of the world.
BRING: Hat, sunglasses, sunscreen, walking shoes, camera and warm clothing. HEAR: A full commentary is provided by your driver and guides. The Māori language is spoken at key points throughout the journey, with English interpretation provided. EAT: Refreshment stops are made for morning and afternoon tea (own expense). Enjoy a pub lunch at Opononi Hotel (own expense). AVAILABILITY: This tour departs Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday.