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North Island NZ, Paihia, Coromandel, Rotorua?

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We have nine nights in New Zealand (after five in Cairns, Au) in early August. Please comment on my plans, and also on how to dress for the winter weather. The itinerary is below. Some specific questions I have are:

Should we definitely spend a night between Paihia and Whitianga (or wherever we stay on the Coromandel Peninsula)? We tend to stop a lot, and I think it will be a long day of driving.

It looks like a lot of people do Coromandel in one day. Should we just spend one night there so that we can see something else? If so, we could spend a night on the Bay of Plenty before heading over to Rotorua.

Please comment:

Arrive Auckland early evening, motel near airport.

Day One: See beaches west of Auckland, see a little bit of Auckland, spend night in city.

Day Two and Three: Drive up to Paihia, spend two nights

Day Four: Drive down to Coromandel, but stop somewhere on the way?

Day Five and Six: Spend two nights on Coromandel Peninsula, Whitianga, or where?

Day Seven: Drive to Rotorua, spend night.

Day Eight:: Head back to Auckland, leave the next morning.

Thanks!

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