UPDATE: Services to return for the summer!

We are pleased to announce that the Northern Explorer and Coastal Pacific trains will be returning to the tracks this spring and summer. Following the success of the TranzAlpine's return work is underway rescheduling the remaining services.

If you would like to be kept up to date with our services and developments, then please sign up to our News Group and we’ll be in touch soon. If you are booked to travel then please do not worry, we will be in touch very soon. We will be back with further information once we have confirmed dates and are ready to take bookings.

The TranzAlpine train from Christchurch to Greymouth return will run on Saturdays and Sundays only in August, daily in the 26 Sep - 11 Oct school holidays. and on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays only from September to November 2020. Bookings are open for these dates. A winter special rate of $75 per seat each way applies in August. Fares start from $129 each way from September to November.

Cook Strait ferry bookings and some daytours and bus routes are also open for sale. Do not hesitate to contact us if you have any queries on 0800 143 669 or info@newzealandtravelteam.com

 

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The Northern Explorer test

Update 30 July 2020: The Northern Explorer will resume for the summer season and bookings will open in a few weeks.

About the journey

The Northern Explorer train service is a scenic rail journey through the five unique geographical regions of the North Island - travelling between Auckland, New Zealand's largest city - home of the Sky Tower, through the central heartland of the North Island to Wellington - New Zealand's harbour capital and arts and culture centre.

Along the way, you will see fantastic views of New Zealand farmland, rugged bush landscapes before ascending up the world famous Raurimu Spiral to the volcanic plateau passing the majestic volcanoes of Mt Tongariro, Mt Ngauruhoe and Mt Ruapehu - the home of the North Island skifields and descending through stunning river gorges to the farming landscapes and rocky sea scapes of the lower North Island - all from large panoramic windows and the open air viewing deck of the Northern Explorer train.

The Northern Explorer carriages have an advanced air bag suspension system for quieter and smoother travel, un-tinted, non-reflective, panoramic side and roof windows to capture the dramatic coastal and mountain views of the magnificent North Island. GPS triggered journey commentary in five languages at your seat via headphones, plus information displays and overhead HD video and are centrally heated/air conditioned for passenger comfort.

The Carriages

Each carriage has onboard washroom/toilet facilities, with '2 Seat-Aisle-2 Seat' seating either as reclining forward facing seats with head and foot rests or 'Table Group' (4 people around a table) seating allowing you to experience the amazing views of the magnificent North Island, through panoramic side and roof windows, while enjoying the company of other passengers.

The Northern Explorer train has a café carriage offering a range of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, snacks and light meals and a viewing carriage for sweeping views of the North Island.

For mobility-impaired passengers, there are spaces for wheel chairs and a disabled public toilet. Wheelchair hoists provide access to the café carriage from track level.

Disabilities?

For hearing-impaired passengers - a hearing loop covers all of the café carriage saloon and serving area. The Northern Explorer train is a reserved seating 'One Class' non-smoking service.

Operating Hours

Update 30 July 2020: The Northern Explorer will resume for the summer season and bookings will open in a few weeks.

The Northern Explorer train usually operates -

Auckland to Wellington - Monday, Thursday and Saturday
Wellington to Auckland - Wednesday, Friday and Sunday

Stops along the way include Papakura, Hamilton, Otorohanga (Waitomo), National Park, Ohakune, Palmerston North and Paraparaumu.

More Details

The Northern Explorer train connects with various bus and coach services at Hamilton from Rotorua and Tauranga and at Palmerston North and Wellington to and from other North Island destinations.

So, sit back and enjoy a genuine kiwi rail experience on the Northern Explorer train travelling through 5 unique regions of the North Island with its spectacular scenic beauty.