1. PACIFIC COAST HIGHWAY – AUCKLAND TO NAPIER
This epic coastal journey starts in Auckland and finishes in the Art Deco town of Napier on the east coast of the North Island. The route covers 1,072 km and takes around six days to complete encompassing old gold towns, geothermal beaches, active volcanoes and wineries. There’s more than enough activities here to satisfy anyone with an interest in discovering one of New Zealand’s most historic regions.
2. THE THERMAL EXPLORER HIGHWAY – AUCKLAND TO LAKE TAUPO
The centre of the North Island is alive with geothermal activity which makes it an exciting place to tour in a motorhome. The Thermal Explorer Highway is a 457 km, four-day route that starts in Auckland and heads through the farming country of the Waikato where you can explore the Waitomo Caves, either on foot or on a guided boat tour. Continue onto Rotorua where you’ll find bubbling mud pools, geysers and natural hot pools to soak in. Next it’s onto Lake Taupo, the largest lake in New Zealand and the site of an ancient volcano, offering plenty of lakeside camping grounds and a mixture of adrenalin-based and relaxing activities.
3. INLAND SCENIC ROUTE – CHRISTCHURCH TO CHRISTCHURCH
One of the South Island’s most popular road trips, you can spend up to six days on the Inland Scenic Route, which does a loop around the Canterbury region. It starts in Christchurch and takes in several small farming towns including Oxford, Methven, Geraldine, Ashburton, as well as the French colonial town of Akaroa. There are some short hikes you can do in the Mount Somers area near Methven or for experienced trampers, the Mount Somers summit offers rewarding views of the surrounding plains.
4. SOUTHERN SCENIC ROUTE – DUNEDIN TO QUEENSTOWN
This 610 km route commences in Dunedin and takes in the lower South Island before terminating in the adventure capital of Queenstown. Southland is known for its rugged coastline, crystal clear lakes, native wildlife and ancient forests. The route takes in Invercargill, New Zealand’s most southern city and Fiordland, considered the most beautiful part of the country. To get the most out the journey plan for four days, there are plenty of scenic camping grounds to park your motorhome along the way.
5. GREAT ALPINE HIGHWAY – CHRISTCHURCH TO GREYMOUTH
As the name of this 255-kilometre route suggests it involves traversing the mighty Southern Alps, and the scenery along the way is breathtaking. After crossing the Canterbury plains, the road climbs 900 metres to Arthur’s Pass Village before crossing the incredible Otira Viaduct. The West Coast offers a completely different landscape with lush rainforest, barren beaches stretching for miles and heritage gold mining towns. A short drive north of Greymouth is the fascinating natural limestone formations, Punakaiki or Pancake Rocks.
Want to explore another country in your campervan? It’s easier than you think. Contact Willship today and we’ll walk you through what’s involved.