The heart of the North Island
The Northern Explorer now operates from Auckland Strand Station (click here for details).
Experience the North Island’s extraordinary range of scenery in one journey as the Northern Explorer takes you through rolling green farmland and virgin bush, past quaint country towns and along rocky coasts. Along the way, you will see the Raurimu Spiral and many other iconic engineering solutions required to complete the trunk line that stretches the length of New Zealand's rugged North Island terrain.
The journey through Tongariro National Park, with its three spectacular volcanic mountains – Tongariro, Ngāuruhoe and Ruapehu – is a highlight, a place of extremes and surprises, where snow-blanketed fields, ancient lava flows and dense beech forests can be seen side by side.
Destinations & Activities
The Northern Explorer is 10 minutes’ walk from Auckland's iconic Sky Tower and waterfront.
Wellington, Capital City
New Zealand's creative, cultural and compact capital. The capital of 'cool'.
A World Heritage setting, home to the stunning Chateau Tongariro at the base of Mt Ruapehu.
Sunsets and sunrises
Spectacular sunrises and sunsets can often be seen as the Northern Explorer travels along the Kapiti coastline.
"Fantastic journey from Auckland to National Park for 2 weeks and return trip. Loved the scenery, the train and the staff were very friendly."
Newark upon Trent, UK
"My parents found the train staff very friendly, regularly offering help and also giving an occasional commentary, which was informative"
For me, the whole enjoyable experience wasn't when I stepped into the Hotel, but when I stepped aboard the KiwiRail service.