4.5 star rating: Recommended 97 Reviews

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  • Location: Auckland, New Zealand
  • Duration:  12 hours (approx.)
Explore the Bay of Islands on a full day trip from Auckland and discover the historic sites of Waitangi and Russell. You’ll visit the Waitangi Treaty Grounds, ferry from Paihia to Russell, New Zealand's first permanent European settlement and sea port, and take an informative tour with a local guide. Before returning to Auckland, enjoy free time to check out Russell’s bustling shops, cafes and museums at your leisure.

Highlights

  • Bay of Islands day trip from Auckland
  • Visit the Waitangi Treaty Grounds and take a guided tour of the Waitangi Treaty House
  • See a traditional Maori meeting house and a huge waka (war canoe)
  • Take the Bay of Islands ferry from Paihia to the town of Russell, site of New Zealand's first European settlement
  • See the highlights of Russell, including the Pompallier Mission, Christ Church, and Flagstaff Hill
  • Have free time to check out the beaches, cafes, shops and museums at your leisure
  • Lunch included (if option selected)

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Bay of Islands Day Tour from Auckland

Maori Statue, Waitangi

After pickup from your centrally-located Auckland hotel or the Sky City coach terminal, you’ll travel by comfortable air-conditioned coach approximately three hours to Paihia, the jumping off point for touring the Bay of Islands. Relax as you motor along the scenic route and avail yourself of free on board WIFI.

When you arrive in Paihia, you’ll head to the Waitangi Treaty Grounds for a guided tour of this historical site, where in 1840 the Treaty of Waitangi–considered the founding document of the nation–was signed by 43 Maori chiefs and the British Crown. You’ll visit the Waitangi Treaty House, built in 1832 as a private home and now a museum with informational displays, including a copy of the treaty. Nearby you'll find an elaborately decorated Maori meeting house and a large waka (war canoe) with photographs depicting its construction from gigantic logs.

After visiting Waitingi, you’ll take a short ferry ride to Russell for a 1-hour coach tour of this charming town with a wild past. Find out why Russell was once known as the 'Hellhole of the Pacific' and see historical highlights including the Pompallier Mission, Christ Church, and New Zealand’s oldest pub. From the top of Flagstaff Hill, you’ll get panoramic views over the bay and learn about the historical controversy surrounding the flagstaff in the 1840s.

You’ll have free time to spend at your leisure when the guided tour concludes in Russell. Relax in town and explore Russell’s cafes, shops, waterfront, museum and art galleries featuring Maori artists. After a scenic and informative full-day tour, you’ll reboard your coach and be returned to Auckland.

Customer Reviews

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2015

We very much liked our Bay of Islands tour and will recommend it to others. Thank you, Pete of California

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2015

Great tour

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2015

Recommend overnight stay. When you have a chance at Russell, you can stay for another hour before coming back at 4pm. The beaches are great and not that crowded, wish I had done an overnighter to explore Russell a bit more.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2015

Recommend overnight stay. When you have a chance at Russell, you can stay for another hour before coming back at 4pm. The beaches are great and not that crowded, wish I had done an overnighter to explore Russell a bit more.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2015

Recommend overnight stay. When you have a chance at Russell, you can stay for another hour before coming back at 4pm. The beaches are great and not that crowded, wish I had done an overnighter to explore Russell a bit more.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2015

Recommend overnight stay. When you have a chance at Russell, you can stay for another hour before coming back at 4pm. The beaches are great and not that crowded, wish I had done an overnighter to explore Russell a bit more.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended March 2015

Our experience was good and our coach driver Kenny gave us such an informative commentary for the 2-3 hour drive up to the Bay of Islands. We got to see a lot in a short amount of time we were up there. If you would like to explore the area more, then I would suggest choose the option where you can stay there overnight. For us the only thing we would change is to choose the lunch option for all the shuttling around we did, we didn't have a chance to grab lunch until after 3pm.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended March 2015

I had a wonderful bus driver/guide on the 1st day who was very informative about the sights we were passing. On the 2nd day I had a private tour with a local driver who followed the pre-planned route and also was able to add his own personal touch since he was a local resident. It was a friendly and fun trip!

5 star rating: Highly Recommended March 2015

Steve was a super guide, very informative and knowledgeable. very good views and i would like to stay one more day if i have time.

Davjo
United Kingdom

5 star rating: Highly Recommended February 2015

Beautiful day out!

From USD $ 148.31

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Tour code: 3910AKLHISBOI

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