5 days

From: NZ$2299

Departure: Auckland

Destination: Taumarunui

Book Now

Explore the Forgotten World. Travel to the rural heart of New Zealand's North Island with the Northern Explorer train, take a two-day rail cart tour, with time to add on more adventures. 


  • Soar through the green pastures of the Waikato in comfort 
  • Return Northern Explorer journey between Auckland and Taumarunui
  • Enjoy morning tea, lunch & afternoon tea onboard the Northern Explorer
  • Stay overnight in the unique Republic of Whangamomona
  • Travel the entire Forgotten World railway from Okahukura to Stratford 


A journey on the Northern Explorer

From the North, you will travel across the Waikato Plains and through humble towns before reaching your destination onboard the Northern Explorer. 

Enjoy the delicious morning tea and lunch that will be provided on the train.

Upon arrival at your destination, enjoy some free time to relax on the stunning grounds of your accommodation before dinner is served. 

A Forgotten World

Today you will embark on a fascinating tour of the Forgotten World. Travel through this remote, rugged and sparsely settled New Zealand landscape, travelling over bridges and through tunnels painstakingly constructed by hardy pioneers. Get immersed in the stories of the land, its people and its history.

Enjoy stops along the way for morning and afternoon tea as well as a delightful ploughman’s lunch. Immerse yourself in the changing views of rolling hills, remote farmland and native bush, and experience wildlife close to the tracks.

Arriving in the Republic of Whangamomona, explore the area and its charismatic pub before checking into the Whangamomona hotel where dinner will be served.

A Forgotten World

After breakfast, continue on the rail cart journey to Stratford through the ever-changing vistas.

Today there will be stops along the way for morning and afternoon tea in remote settlements. After lunch at Douglas Station, continue to Stratford, where Taranaki Maunga dominates the landscape.

After a short stop in Stratford, take a shuttle back to Taumarunui where you will return to your accommodation and enjoy dinner.

Relax or Explore

Today you have a free day to relax or explore more of the King Country. 

Taumarunui is perfectly placed to explore the Whanganui River by canoe or by jet boat and visit the iconic Bridge to Nowhere.

Or maybe a Great Ride is more your scene. Hire bikes or e-bikes and ride the southern section of the Timber Trail in the Pureora Forest.

Dinner at your accommodation is included.

Return to Auckland

Enjoy breakfast at your accommodation with cooked and continental options available before returning to board the Northern Explorer train home.  Afternoon tea will be provided during your journey onboard the Northern Explorer scenic train.


An epic voyage on the Northern Explorer train

One of the biggest highlights of your Taumarunui experience will be the journey.

Joining the Northern Explorer in Auckland or Hamilton, your break will start in relaxing style as you ease back in your reclined seat and enjoy the views through your panoramic window. 

Along the way, you'll see hobbits and orcs and wizards - well, maybe, on a clear day. But this is Middle Earth, and highlights do include rural scenery of rolling hills, paddocks, and pastures reminiscent of the Shire. 


More packages and breaks to explore