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Auckland Small group activities

Our most recommended Auckland Small group activities

From Auckland: Waiheke Island Wineries' Tour

1. From Auckland: Waiheke Island Wineries' Tour

Start by hopping on a morning boat to Waiheke Island from Auckland’s Downtown Ferry Terminal, enjoying a 35-minute boat ride with views of historical Devonport and Rangitoto Island on the way.  Meet your guide once you reach the island, and head on your way to 4 of the island’s finest wineries. Savor tastings at each of the 4 wineries, with an extended lunch break for your own free time at one of them. As a bonus, see why the island is famous for its beaches and see the rolling hills of vines, with your guide’s commentary accompanying.  At the end of the tour, either choose to take a transfer back to the port for an afternoon ferry back to Auckland, or choose to remain in the village and stroll back to the ferry on a 15-minute walk.

From Auckland: Hobbiton & Waitomo Caves Day Trip with Lunch

2. From Auckland: Hobbiton & Waitomo Caves Day Trip with Lunch

Join this tour to visit two of New Zealand's most iconic and famous attractions, the Hobbiton Movie Set and the Waitomo Glowworm Caves, in a day trip from Auckland.  After pickup from your central Auckland hotel, travel south over the Bombay Hills for panoramic views of the Waikato Region and the scenic Hauraki Plains. Arrive at The Shire's Rest in Matamata, the home of the Hobbiton Movie Set. Your guide will help you skip the crowds so you can explore the Movie Set on an official 2-hour tour. Be escorted through the 10-acre site and learn fascinating details of how the Hobbiton Movie Set was created.  See Hobbit Holes, The Green Dragon Inn, and The Mill. Savor a complimentary specially-brewed beverage at The Green Dragon Inn.  Afterwards, travel to the mesmerizing Waitomo Glowworm Caves, where you'll enjoy a Kiwi-style lunch at The Homestead in Waitomo. On the way, share stories from Hobbiton and interact with your fellow travelers.  Glide silently by boat in the world famous caves and be amazed by the thousands of magical glowworms.  Your guide will likely be a descendant of the Maori Chief who originally explored the Caves and can share with you the remarkable history of the area. Walk through the majestic Cathedral Cove, famous for its acoustics. The return trip takes you through some of New Zealand's most beautiful countryside before following the majestic Waikato River northwards part of the way back to Auckland. You will pass Taupiri with its very sacred Maori burial ground. The day concludes with your return to your accommodation.

Auckland: Sunset & Night Sea Kayak Tour to Rangitoto Island

3. Auckland: Sunset & Night Sea Kayak Tour to Rangitoto Island

Kayak out to beautiful Rangitoto Island while the afternoon sun is slowly setting over Auckland and the Waitakere Ranges. Meet at the free pick-up point in Auckland. Then paddle out to Rangitoto Island in the setting sun. Once at the island, pull your kayak up to Rangitoto Wharf before embarking on a 1-hour, leisurely walk to the summit. From the top of the island you will be treated to the best sunset location Auckland has to offer. Enjoy a BBQ dinner while enjoying the stunning North Island views. Under the guidance of your kayak tour guide, paddle back to Auckland in the dark, watching the twinkling city lights of New Zealand's largest city getting closer and closer. Perfect for first-time kayakers as well as those more experienced, this unique, guided tour includes instruction, and a great, unique experience of Auckland.

From Auckland: Hobbiton Afternoon Tour

4. From Auckland: Hobbiton Afternoon Tour

This tour starts later than most (at 12:00 PM) - with hotel pickups from 11:30 AM. After leaving Auckland, travel through the Waikato region, which is well known for cattle and dairy farming. You will also pass some sheep farms on your way to Hobbiton. On arrival at Hobbiton you will have time get something to eat (own expense) or explore the Shires Rest Souvenir shop before joining Hobbiton Tours for a group walking tour of the Hobbiton Movie Set including a complementary drink at the Green Dragon before boarding the coach to return to Auckland.

From Auckland: Hobbiton, Rotorua & Waitomo Caves Day Trip

5. From Auckland: Hobbiton, Rotorua & Waitomo Caves Day Trip

Visit the Hobbiton Movie Set, Rotorua, and Waitomo Caves in one day on a guided tour from Auckland. See three of North Island’s iconic sites in one attraction-filled day. After hotel pickup, travel from Auckland to Hobbiton through Waikato. On arrival, you’ll be guided through the picturesque twelve-acre site and given fascinating details of how the movie set was created. The official tour concludes with a complimentary drink at the Green Dragon Inn. Climb back into the vehicle for the approximately 55-minute drive to Rotorua where you will spend around 1.5 hours. On arrival, visit key attractions, such as the lakefront, government gardens, and Rachel Springs. After sightseeing, have lunch at Pataka Kai, a restaurant next to the Te Puia thermal reserve. Enjoy views and take photos of Te Puia's Pohutu Geyser and thermal valley from the restaurant (entry not included). After Rotorua, drive to the world-renowned Waitomo Caves where you’ll enter the caves on foot and ride out in a small boat. Above your head will be thousands of tiny glowworms radiating their unmistakable luminescent light as an expert guide provides informative commentary. 

Leigh: Goat Island Guided Snorkeling Tour for Beginners

6. Leigh: Goat Island Guided Snorkeling Tour for Beginners

Begin your tour by meeting the team at the Goat Island Dive and Snorkel Center. Here, your friendly staff will get you kitted up with a mask, snorkel, fins, and a wetsuit. You will then drive in your own vehicle 2 miles (3km) to the Goat Island Marine Reserve, where you will meet with your snorkel instructor. Learn about the history of Goat Island and the marine life you are likely to meet at New Zealand's first marine reserve. The experience starts with an introduction to using the equipment and some snorkeling and swimming techniques. Before jumping in you'll receive a full, thorough safety briefing. Everyone will make their way to the water.  The group will stay in shallow waters while getting used to the equipment and the strange sensation of breathing while looking around underwater. Once everyone is feeling confident and comfortable, the group will make their way out to sea to continue the adventure. After the tour, you will be able to use the equipment for the remainder of the day to carry on exploring at your own pace. You will be part of a natural aquarium, with many varieties of colorful fish and marine life including Blue Maomao, Snapper, Eagle and Sting Rays, Blue Cod, Octopus, Kahawai, as well as Crayfish. Sometimes Dolphins or Orca visit the reserve and will often play with the snorkelers.

Rangitoto Island: Sea Kayak & Summit Hike Day Trip

7. Rangitoto Island: Sea Kayak & Summit Hike Day Trip

Explore the landmark of the Auckland region and see Auckland city from another perspective. The full-day adventure tour by kayak across Waitemata Harbor will take you to the area’s youngest and most active volcano. After your safety briefing and paddling instruction, you will kayak across the Waitemata Harbor, meaning “sparkling waters.” where you may see wildlife, such as Little Blue Penguins and Cooks Petrels. On arrival at Rangitoto Island, location for the largest and youngest of Auckland’s volcanoes, you will start a leisurely 1-hour hike to the summit. Walk up the pohutukawa-cloaked island exploring the baked scoria rocks, which support over 200 different native trees and flowering plants. Upon reaching the top you will be treated to the finest 360-degree views that the Auckland region has to offer. Return to the water’s edge, where a healthy, hearty Kiwi lunch will be awaiting you, with cold and hot drinks to match! If time permits, you might even enjoy a refreshing dip in the sea before the gear is packed back into the kayak to head home. Kayak back south, perhaps with the help of a sail to take you safely back to St Heliers Bay.

From Auckland: Hobbiton Movie Set Full-Day Small-Group Trip

8. From Auckland: Hobbiton Movie Set Full-Day Small-Group Trip

Make the most of your time in Auckland with a small-group tour to the magical and enchanting Hobbiton, Lord of the Rings Movie Set. You will have the movie set almost entirely to yourself. See how this beautiful piece of farmland has been transformed into the Shire from Middle Earth. Start off your adventure with pickup from your centrally located hotel or the Auckland Sky Tower. Travel south in an air-conditioned Mercedes-Benz. Look out the van's extra-large windows on the scenic drive to Matamata over the Bombay Hills and through the beautiful Hauraki Plains. Listen to facts and anecdotes from your guide clearly via a hi-tech audio system. When you arrive at Hobbiton, take a 2-hour tour with a knowledgeable guide. Take plenty of time to explore the locations you’ve seen at home. Pose for photos in front of your favorite places like the Hobbit Holes and The Mill. At the end of the tour, enjoy a specially brewed drink at the Green Dragon Inn. Afterward, visit the Shire Store, which features an extensive selection of souvenirs to remind you of your visit to the Hobbiton Movie Set. On the drive back home, follow the amazing Waikato river and drive past the Taupiri Maori burial ground. Finish your fun day trip from Auckland with convenient drop-off at your hotel or back at the Sky Tower in Auckland’s city center.

From Auckland: Small Group Coromandel Peninsula Day Tour

9. From Auckland: Small Group Coromandel Peninsula Day Tour

First, enjoy the 90-minute drive to the charming town of Thames, where you will take a short break. Then, hit the road again and take in the spectacular views along New Zealand’s west coast. You will then stop in at the Coromandel Township where the renowned potter, Barry Brickell, had his studio. Ride on his personally designed mountain railway system, on a memorable journey through the rugged landscape. Next, stop for a quiet stroll in pristine rainforest and see some magnificent kauri trees, which once covered the Coromandel Peninsula. The journey continues across the mountain divide and descends towards the east coast beaches where you will stop for lunch. Visit the amazing Hot Water Beach, where hot water bubbles to the surface of the sand. Dig your own hot tub right next to the lapping waves.   Then, visit Cathedral Cove, where the water washes through a natural arch onto a white sandy beach backed by white cliffs. Next, take the 30-minute downhill walk to the beautiful beach, which was featured in the Chronicles of Narnia.   End the day enjoy the landscape during the return journey to Auckland, as you head over the hills along a different route.

The Classic: Discover Amazing Auckland on an Electric Bike

10. The Classic: Discover Amazing Auckland on an Electric Bike

Auckland is a city that it built on volcanos - so that means great views, and hills! Touring the city on a fun electric bike is the perfect solution. Electric bikes allow people with all levels of fitness to enjoy cycling and the benefits of being outdoors. See the best of the city from the comfort of the saddle, with a local expert guide who will take you on a fascinating journey - exploring the past, present and future of Auckland. Meet at an electric bike store located in the heart of Auckland city - within an easy walk of the cruise ship terminals and many hotels. There, be kitted with your stylish electric bike and your riding gear - including a helmet and a cycle specific headset, so you can safely listen to your guide as you ride along. You'll be given a short orientation with the electric bikes and do a practice ride nearby, to make sure you are 100% comfortable before the tour sets off.  Having departed from the city center, ride on the Grafton Gully cycleway towards the first stop and the high point (literally) of the tour - Mount Eden/Maungawhau - the highest of the many volcanic cones around Auckland. Let the motor on your electric bike do all the hard work as you cruise up. Enjoy spectacular 360-degree views at the summit, as your guide tells you about Auckland's turbulent early years. Then its on to one of the largest parks in Auckland - the Domain - for more beautiful views from Auckland Museum. Continue through the historic suburb of Parnell and down to Auckland's amazing waterfront. Riding an electric bike along the shoreline on the Tamaki Drive cycleway towards Okahu Bay is an experience not to be missed. As you head back towards the center of the city, ride on some of Auckland's newest cycleways and some of Auckland's most historic wharves, where you'll learn all about Auckland's relationship with the sea over the years. Then its through the bustling Viaduct, where your guide can recommend plenty of dining options for you to enjoy during the rest of your visit. A ride through one of Auckland's newest developments, Wynyard Quarter, is next, then round the Silo Park to check out your next destination - Westhaven and the Harbor Bridge. Ride along the picturesque boardwalks to Westhaven - the largest marina in the Southern Hemisphere and get up close and personal with the Harbor Bridge. The tour continues on through historic Freemans Bay before joining heading up to one of Auckland's new cycling icons - Te Ara i Whiti/the Lightpath. This award-winning, vibrant (and very pink!) cycleway is a great spot for some photos before you ride back down into the city to finish the tour where you started. To ensure the best experience, your group size will be small - a maximum of 6 riders and your guide. And there are frequent stops on the tour - plenty of time to take photos and listen to your guide as they share the story of Auckland with you.

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Frequently asked questions about Auckland

What top attractions are a must-see in Auckland?

What are the best day trips and excursions from Auckland?

The best day trips and excursions from Auckland are:

Hobbiton Movie Set

Other Sightseeing Options in Auckland

Want to discover all there is to do in Auckland? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Auckland

Overall rating

4.9 / 5

based on 259 reviews

This was a great tour. Our tour guide, Alex, was excellent. Very helpful and very knowledgeable about the history of the country. I enjoyed this trip and recommend anyone going to Auckland to take it.

Our driver Andy was so good and so fun. He made sure we were on time to all our destinations, and always repeated things twice incase some of us were too busy taking photos or chatting!

We had a great time traveling around the New Zealand North Island. Our guide was excellent and everything was well organised.

100% recommande ! Everyone were so nice and all the trip went very well.

David was amazing. He made the tour even more fun. Good vibes.