Scenic East Cape

Easy Twin Share

From $1,855 per person

Download Brochure

Wednesday 26 – Sunday 30 October 2022 (5 Days)

The East Cape is an area full of history, cultural heritage and stunning natural beauty. We visit historic canoe landing spots, secluded bays, Captain Cook’s monument, the Art Deco seaside town of Napier, and numerous other areas with a unique history to learn about.

Day 1              Wednesday 26 October 2022
Departing Hamilton this morning, we travel over the Kaimai Ranges to the Bay of Plenty, named by Captain James Cook in 1769 because of the abundance of water and food. Our first stop will be Mount Maunganui where there will be time to purchase lunch (own cost) and stretch your legs. We travel to the small coastal settlement of Maketu to view the landing site of the Arawa canoe. Continuing our journey, we drive through Matata to reach Whakatane. Along the way take in the stunning coastal and country views, and if it’s a clear day view the active marine volcano, White Island. Steeped in history and culture, the Whakatane district is full of pa sites and the Mataatua canoe landing site. We enjoy a sightseeing tour of Whakatane, before checking into our accommodation for the evening. Tonight, we enjoy a group dinner at a local restaurant, the perfect chance to get to know fellow travellers.
Accommodation: Barringtons Motor Lodge, Whakatane – 1 night

Day 2              Thursday 27 October 2022  
After breakfast this morning, we stop in town to purchase lunch to enjoy at one of the many scenic areas along the way. Departing Whakatane, we follow the shoreline of the Ohiwa Harbour to Opotiki following “The Pathway to the Sunrise”. Opotiki is situated on a harbour inlet formed by the junction of two rivers, the Waioeka and the Otara. Enjoying the coastline views, we travel along State Highway 35 passing numerous bays and beaches to reach Te Kaha. The area started as a whaling settlement before moving into farming and is now a prosperous kiwifruit region. Travelling through Waihau Bay and Whangaparoa we cross Cape Runaway to Hicks Bay, our overnight stop. We enjoy dinner tonight at the motel.
Accommodation: Hicks Bay Motel Lodge, Hicks Bay – 1 night

Day 3              Friday 28 October 2022  
Hicks Bay — Gisborne          (BLD)
Leaving Hicks Bay from the top of the hill, we’ll enjoy views of the East Cape beyond Te Araroa. Here we visit the world’s largest standing Pohutukawa tree (Te Waha o Rerekohu). We visit the township of Ruatoria, home of Sir Apirana Ngata. As we leave Ruatoria, keep an eye out for Mt Hikurangi, the highest non-volcanic peak in the North Island and the first place to see the sun in New Zealand. Visiting Tokomaru Bay we enjoy a lunch at the Te Puka Tavern, an east coast icon since 1873. After lunch, we visit Anaura Bay before arriving at picturesque Tolaga Bay, where a Category One Heritage New Zealand Wharf is found, the longest of its type in the southern hemisphere. We continue along the sandy coastline to Gisborne, a city rich in both Maori and European history. We enjoy the sights, including Cook’s monument and the monument for Nicholas Young the cabin boy and first member of Cook’s ship to sight land, before checking into our hotel where we will enjoy dinner tonight.
Accommodation: Emerald Hotel, Gisborne - 1 night

Day 4              Saturday 29 October 2022
Gisborne – NAPIER          (BLD)
Our first stop for the day is Eastwoodhill Arboretum, the national arboretum of New Zealand. After time exploring the arboretum, we travel across the Whararata range to Mahia Peninsula, with its crescent shaped beach to the south and sheltered beach on the north side, it is the perfect location to enjoy our picnic lunch. We continue our journey into the Hawkes Bay travelling via Wairoa, a town with a long history of whaling, flax trading and now manufacturing and farming services. Travelling further into northern Hawkes Bay we pass by Lake Tutira and the Whirinaki pulp and paper mill which annually produces and ships over 220,000 tonnes of paper to Japan. On arrival in Napier, we check in to our accommodation on Marine Parade where we enjoy a farewell dinner.
Accommodation:  Quality Inn, Napier – 1 night

Day 5              Sunday 30 October 2022
This morning, we enjoy a sightseeing tour of Napier, viewing the Art Deco buildings, the Port, and Ahuriri before starting our journey home, travelling through the Esk Valley. Travelling over the Turangakumu Range, and through the southern end of the huge Kaiangaroa Forest, we cross the wide pumice plateau of the Kaiangaroa Plains on our way to Taupo, where we have our lunch stop (own cost), before continuing our homeward journey.

Barringtons Motor Lodge Entrance

Barrington's Motel Whakatane

Free Wi-Fi and BBQ facilities are on offer at Barringtons Motor Lodge, just 5 minutes’ walk from the river. It offers self-contained accommodation with flat-screen satellite TV. There are kitchenettes with pots, a microwave and a refrigerator in all units, while some also have a stovetop. Each room has electric blankets and a bathroom with heated towel rails, a hairdryer and free toiletries.

Cabins at Hicks Bay Motel Lodge

Hicks Bay Motor Lodge

Hicks Bay Motel Lodge New Zealand is set on a 14 acre bluff, 250 meters above sea level, in historic and botanically protected, unspoiled Maori Reserved Land. Come Where peace and tranquillity abound. Overlooking natural waterways & breath taking Pacific ocean vistas, we offer the most tranquil and relaxing settings among the East Cape hotels. Join our caring and informed staff as you are whisked away from the hustle and bustle of noise and clatter and find yourself surrounded by nature and beauty unsurpassed and untouched.

Pool area at the Emerald Hotel in Gisborne

Quality Emerald Hotel

In the heart of the city, Emerald Hotel is close to many of the attractions the area has to offer. The Studio Suite offers an open plan room with bedroom and small living area, ensuite and views of the city out the picture windows.

Exterior and pool at the Quality Inn on the Marine Parade, Napier

Quality Inn Napier

The Quality Inn Napier is located on Marine Parade, home to one of Napier's most significant tourist precincts and is close to the Art Deco heritage area and many local wineries and vineyards. Offering modern, spacious accommodation in a range of twin, double and studio apartments. All 60 rooms are fully equipped with the finest facilities including free Wi-Fi, TV, air conditioning and kitchenettes for convenience. Some rooms offer balconies and/or sea views of Napier Beach.

Tour Inclusions

  • Door to door home collection & drop off service available from select areas - refer to further information available here
  • 4 nights accommodation - twin/double rooms, all with private facilities (single rooms available with surcharge)
  • Tour admissions as per itinerary
  • Touring in modern air-conditioned vehicle
  • Breakfasts (B), Lunches (L), Dinners (D) where indicated on your daily itinerary - 4x breakfasts, 2x lunches, 4x dinners
  • Roadside Morning Teas – where possible
  • Entry and Jeep Tour at Eastwoodhill Arboretum

Tour Payments Per Person ($NZD)

Share Twin Cost: $1,855.00
Single Supplement: $370.00
Non-refundable deposit due at time of booking $200.00

Discounts available for Travel Club Members - Please Enquire

Full balance of tour payment due by Wednesday 14 September 2022

Early Bird Offer Book and pay in full by Tuesday 28 June 2022 and receive $75.00 discount per person!


Are door to door collections included on this tour? YES

Yes. Leisure Time Tours offers a free home collection and drop off service from selected Hamilton, Tauranga, Rotorua and most Auckland City areas. Our complimentary collections are based on your individual post code, other home collection locations available at an additional cost. Alternatively you may wish to meet us at our Hamilton depot in which case you can park your car in our secure yard free of charge for the duration of your holiday. For all tours that have a flight component, we can also offer door to door collections from Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin city areas.

Please refer to our Home Collection flyer for further information about this service.

Is the Guaranteed twin Share Price available on this tour? YES

Yes. Our Guaranteed Twin Share price is available for those passengers willing to share with another single traveller of the same gender. If there isn’t another passenger of the same gender to share with we GUARANTEE our twin share price. Leisure Times Tours accepts no responsibility for the compatibility of passengers travelling under this arrangement. If someone is not compatible with the person they have been matched up with, all additional costs incurred to assist with changing their shared room type to two single rooms will be at the expense of both travellers and will be subject to availability. Acceptance of a guaranteed twin share room is subject to the individual’s medical condition being suitable for this type of arrangement.

Please note that the guaranteed twin share pricing is not available to pre & post tour accommodation arrangements.

What fitness level is required for this tour? EASY LEVEL

To ensure that you select the right tour for you, we’ve developed a very clear set of fitness recommendations for our tours. These physical ratings clearly explain how much physical exertion is required to participate on each tour. 

Level 1 – Easy

  • Relaxed paced tour
  • Be able to participate in guided or unguided small walking tours at a relaxed pace.
  • Walk on mostly level ground
  • Tackle an occasional flight of stairs
  • Occasionally need to stand for up to 10 minutes
  • Able to get on and off transportation unaided

Level 2 – Moderate

  • Be able to participate in walking tours with time to rest at least every 10 minutes
  • Stand for 15 minutes without needing to sit down
  • Tackle a flight of stairs or incline
  • Able to get on and off transportation unaided
  • Walk confidently on bush tracks

 Level 3 – Active

  • Participate in walking tours without having to rest for up to 20 minutes
  • Walk up an incline equal to a flight of stairs without stopping
  • Stand for 30 minutes without needing to sit down
  • Walk over uneven ground and walk through soft sand
  • Able to get on and off transportation unaided
Is this tour a guaranteed departure? NO

This tour will be guaranteed once there are 10 passengers booked on the tour.

Can you assist with pre & post tour accommodation? YES

Yes we can. Should you wish to arrive earlier or stay longer we can book in some pre and post tour accommodation for you. Please ask at the time of booking if you require this.

Will there be a daily seat rotation on this tour? YES

Passengers rotate seats in the coach daily so that all passengers have the opportunity to enjoy forward and window seating. All passengers are expected to participate as a booking condition.

Are roadside morning teas included on this tour? YES

Yes. A point of difference is that wherever possible we offer our passengers roadside refreshments served from the coach. This gives all passengers the chance to mix and mingle over a hot cuppa allowing us to share our experiences as we journey together.

Do I need travel insurance?

Leisure Time Tours strongly advises all passengers to purchase a travel insurance policy. A comprehensive travel insurance policy may prevent you from spending extra money in case of an emergency and will help you feel protected during your holiday. We are agents for Cover More Travel Insurance. Ask us for a no obligation insurance quote today.

How much luggage can I bring?

Luggage is restricted to one suitcase and one small item of hand luggage per person. Baggage handling of one suitcase per person, at each hotel, is included in the trip price. Carry-on/hand luggage handling is the responsibility of each guest and all personal items must be taken off the coach by you each day of the trip.

What clothing should I pack?

When on tour, dress is generally relaxed and casual with an informal dress standard on most occasions. Casual wear is recommended for travelling with something a little more formal for evening dining. If taking part in outdoor activities, make sure you have a waterproof coat, comfortable footwear and dress in layers to help you adjust to any sudden changes in climate. Be prepared for New Zealand’s powerful sun, even on cold windy days, bringing a hat, sunglasses and sunscreen.

Scenic East Cape Map

Download Brochure