Road Tripping around the North Island, New Zealand

If I were going to road trip anywhere it would be New Zealand.

Now before you think this post is about an epic 3 month, country-wide trip complete with camping, it is not. We went for a three days and stayed in a hotel... but it opened my eyes to how much fun the real deal could be.

New Zealand is incredibly picturesque and you've got to hand it to the Kiwi's, they keep the place looking fresh. Everywhere is so clean and orderly! 

After my month in Manly was up I flew over to meet my friend Theresa in Auckland. The first thing I learnt was that New Zealand is not a casual 50 minute flight from Sydney like I once thought, its closer to 3 hours and the whole journey somehow seemed to take all day.

Due to the lateness of my arrival we decided to hang out in Auckland for the night then leave bright and early the next day, of course after a pit stop to the french bakery.

In case you hadn't heard, New Zealand is full of sheep. In fact there are close to 30 million sheep which is far more than the paltry 5 million people.  To honour this the buildings in New Zealand are even in the shape of sheep.

Or maybe it was just these buildings.. who knows.

Our plan for the day was to drive up to Mount Maunganui in Tauranga and the way stop by at the Te Waihou Walkway up to the blue springs.

Don't those names just role off your tongue?

Obviously we need to refuel before our walk and we found the cutest cafe in Tirau that served up some delicious (and huge) lunches. 

The Te Waihou walkway just outside of Tirau takes about 3 hours. Thankfully it is all on the flat - woohoo - and it goes by this gorgeous river with its famously clear water.

The blue springs come from the Mamaku Plateau and the water takes 100 years to filter through. It is so clean that it is the source for 70% of NZ's bottled water. 

Worth noting that no matter how tempting it is, don't go swimming. One because it is bad for the environment, and two because you will freeze - it is only 11 degrees!

After our mini hike we continued on to Tauranga for the evening. This port town is perfect for summer weekend getaways.

There is a fabulous long stretch of beach right next to the town which has decent surf most of the time, and if the water isn't your scene there are plenty of hikes around.

For dinner we hit up the Mount Social Club, easily the funkiest place in town!

You could tell whoever decorated the place had a blast with their traffic lights as lamps and broken bath tubs as sofas. 

The menu had mainly tapas options which suited us perfectly thanks to our rather large lunch.

Definitely worth checking out if you are in Tauranga.

The following morning got off to a bit of a rocky start as we slept through our alarm. We had ambitious plans to climb Mount Maungani for sunrise, but alas the sleep was good too.

The climb really isn't long at about 45minutes, but it is steep! As I hadn't had my morning coffee I was pretty sure I was close to death at various moments but we survived and the view was incredible.

After we recovered we returned to town for a breakfast of champions and some matcha... the caffeine from coffee just wouldn't cut it, need the extra green energy! 

Our afternoon was spent waiting for the surf to pick up. 

It never did, so we just lay in the sun instead before finally getting ready for our next port of call - HOBBINGTON!



  1. 3 days sounds like a wonderful amount of time to have way to have got a taste of New Zealand! I really want to visit there, the mass of undisturbed land is so appealing. I love your colourful photos from your trip :)

    1. It was lovely! Thanks so much Gabrielle!

  2. That giant sheep building is genius and everywhere looks so green! I love the look of Mount Social Club too

    1. I know! The building is actually a tourist information centre which is cool :)

  3. A forty five minute hike for those views yes please. Love the sheep architecture Lucy x