Journey into a unique part of New Zealand the Hokianga, first discovered by Kupe the voyager. Visit the Waipoua Forest and meet your guide to visit a national icon, the mighty Kauri tree Tāne Mahuta ( Lord of the Forest ). Spend time in seaside towns of Opononi and Omapere before travelling to the Family run Kawhiti Glow Worm caves for a guided tour before returning to Paihia at 4pm.
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 Maori voyager Kupe, hear its legends, and venture into the Waipoua forest to meet the mighty kauri tree Tāne Mahuta.
Depart from Paihia at 8.00am in your air conditioned mini van with your driver / guide for the day following the historical trading trail to the Hokianga where we will meet your local Maori guide, then venture into the ancient Waipoua Kauri Forest for an unforgettable encounter. Learn about life in the forest and hear Maori waiata (songs), myths and legends as your guide takes you on an intimate journey through nature and explains how the lives of local Maori are intertwined with the forest.
The Waipoua 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.
After your forest encounter, spend some time in the Hokianga town of Opononi before turning back towards Paihia along the old stagecoach route. This trail was first marked out by early Maori and then frequented by traders and merchants who transported supplies, kauri, gum and timber between the coasts.
On your way back, stop at the Kawiti Glow-worm Caves and discover one of Northland's best-kept secrets. These family-run caves will delight you with twinkling glow-worms, amazing limestone rock formations including stalactites and stalagmites, all surrounded in lush green native forest.
Your driver / guide will return you back to Paihia at 4pm