How long a drive from Bay of Islands to Rotorua

Jun 17th, 2002, 09:18 AM
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How long a drive from Bay of Islands to Rotorua

I am planning the last week of 3 week trip to Australia and New Zealand next month to be a road trip in the North Island. I'm having a bit of a hard time figuring out if I can comfortably drive from the Bay of Islands to Rotorua or Waitomo in one day. Many itineraries I see have you going back to Auckland, which is where I will start out. My goal is to start from Auckland, drive to Bay of Islands, then go to Rotorua, then Waitomo and finally back to Auckland in 6 1/2 days. Any suggestions? I don't want to be in the car more than about 6 hours at most on that one day's drive down to Rotorua.
Jun 17th, 2002, 03:23 PM
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If you travel from the Bay of Islands to Rotorua you need to pass through Auckland. Depending on how many stops you have I would allow 2-3 hours to go from Auckland to the BOI. It is about 4 hours from Auckland to Rotorua, once again depending on how many stops you have and I like to stop a lot. Going from Auckland to BOI I would suggest going north on the coastal road (western side of the North Island) and returning on State Highway 1 (via Whangarei). You will find it on a map. Going on the coastal road you pass through the Waipoua (? spelling) forest - quite picturesque. They charge you to go into the forest but if you go a bit further on you can walk in and see the large kauri tree called something like Mahuta for free - seen one you have seen the lot so I wouldn't pay. The BOI are particularly beautiful but is a quiet area. Hope this helps you a bit. Have fun.
Jun 17th, 2002, 03:24 PM
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Auckland to Paihia is 330 miles, and will take about 7 hours. Paihia to Rotorua is 320 miles, which will take about 8 hours. Rotorua to Waitomo is 190 miles and will take about 4 hours. Waitomo to Auckland is 290 miles, which will take almost 8 hours.

If you only want to be in the car for 6 hours, you will probably not make it from Bay of Islands to Rotorua in one day.
Jun 17th, 2002, 05:19 PM
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Alf - you have your times all wrong. It most certainly does not take 7 hours to drive from Auckland to Paihia (Bay of Islands). I do it often and do there and back in a day. If Auckland to Paihia is 7 hours, it is certainly more than an extra hour to go from Paihia to Rotorua. Waitomo would only be about 3 hours from Auckland, most certainly not 8 hours. Unfortunately I don't have my map with me at work today otherwise I would have the exact miles and times for you. I still think if you allow 3 hours Auckland to BOI and 4hrs for Auckland to Rotorua you wouldn't be far out.
Jun 17th, 2002, 06:03 PM
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Hi Sherita
You have been given a lot of good advise and most of it is correct HOWEVER it is obviouis from your opening statment that youare going to DSo Australia and NZ in 3 weeks with one week in the North Island. Several things to look at:
Jun 17th, 2002, 06:18 PM
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Sorry Sherita
I cut myself off in full flight!
1.Should yoube going to the Bay of Islands - much of the scenery can be seen round Auckland and the Coromandel.
2. How experienced are you at driving on the left hand side of the road on undivided two lane highways? The road between Auckland and the Bay of Islands while an easy drive for NZers has claimed the lives of a number of tourists who often kill NZers in the process.

Having said that we do have North American guests at our lodge who drive from Paihia to here in the Bay of Plenty, a similar distance to Rotorua or Waitomo in a day. While I can do the BofI to Waitomo or Rotorua in 5 hours it depends on the time of day, traffic, how well you know the road and how fast you drive. For the average, not bent on killing themselves, North American, I would suggest that you should allow 4 to 5 hours Auckland/BofI.,30 minutes to 1 hour to get through Auckland, and 2 to 3 hours Auckland to Rotorua/Waitomo. Best 61/2 hours worst 9 hours.
I know plenty of my countrymen will quote all sorts of figures but your situation is different. Hope this helps
Jun 17th, 2002, 06:30 PM
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Well, thank you very much for the kind responses. I have never driven on the "other" side of the road, being an American, and a Los Angelean, however, I am a pretty decent offensive and defensive driver and since I'll have my 14 year old daughter with me, I will pay attention to what I'm doing and not do anything too stupid....we are spending 8 nights in Oz and another 6 in South Island before finishing off our trip in North Island. The Bof I look so beautiful I just have to believe they are worth the trip! It seems, though, that a one day drive straight through from BofI to Rotorua is not the best idea. So, where to stay mid-way, other than Auckland again? We will finish up our trip in Auckland for 2 nights with 1 1/2 days in there, so I'm not keen on staying in Auckland before that final couple of days. Hope that makes sense. What about driving to Hamilton? Or Coromandel Peninsula from BofI? Is that doable?
Jun 18th, 2002, 07:14 PM
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I have never been to the North Island of NZ but we are going there in November. I have spent a great deal of time planning for this trip and I must tell you that Kerry knows what he is talking about. I was determined to do the exact trip (7 day) you are planning but realized that the driving time would ruin our enjoyment. The Bay of Islands really is a long way from Auckland. Please take some time to look into visiting the Coromandel Peninsula instead. The trip Kerry has helped me plan will not have more than 4 hours a day in driving time. Have fun putting this trip together.I sure have Mim
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