Stay at the Alexander Spa in the heart of Taumarunui township. Embark on a thrilling jetboat adventure to a pioneer settlement followed by a guide on conservation, topped with a bit of lavender.
Come experience the thrill and excitement of jetboating on the Whanganui River where you visit the unique and remote Posh Pioneer, an off the grid pioneer settlement for a grazing lunch, then jet boat further down the Whanganui to the beautiful Blue Duck Lodge for coffee and talk about the conservation effort here then bus back to Taumarunui for dinner. The next day, enjoy a visit to New Zealand’s largest lavender farm and partake of morning tea before returning to your train for the journey home.
📍 Auckland/Hamilton - Taumarunui by Chartered Heritage Train
☕ Morning tea aboard train
🍽️ Continental breakfast at accommodation
🍽️ Lunch at Posh Pioneers
Make a brew, down a continental breakfast and brace for adventure! Your guide will pick you up from the motel and down to the river where you trade in the wheels for the jet boat! Jetting down the river, take in the hidden beauty of the King Country until you arrive at the Posh Pioneers at Maharanui.
This is a special place, a once in a lifetime experience where the hosts of Posh Pioneers have set out to respect and preserve the Wairua (spirit) of this remote location. Nestled off grid, with no road access, tour this pioneer preserve and admire the sustainable lifestyle of living off the land. Enjoy a grazing table lunch before saying goodbye to this piece of paradise then head back onto the jetboat where we head further downstream to the Blue Duck Lodge on the banks of the Whanganui river, surrounded by the Whanganui National Park in all its wilderness. Here we enjoy a coffee, tour and a chat with local host about the core values of the Blue Duck Lodge, conserving endangered wildlife, increase health of native bush and rivers and preserve the history of the area by educating its visitors.
From here we bus back down the adventure highway to Taumarunui and your motel. Out again for your choice of dinner tonight in Taumarunui to share stories of you highlights from the day.
📍 Taumarunui - Auckland/Hamilton by Chartered Heritage Train
🍽️ Continental breakfast at accommodation
☕ Morning tea at Laurens Lavender Gardens
☕ Afternoon tea aboard train
Alexander Spa Motel is in the heart of Taumarunui, off the main street. Rooms come in Queen, twin or family studios – all with ensuite bathrooms. Just a short walk from local eateries which your hosts will happily point out to you. Continental breakfast is included Saturday and Sunday mornings.
The North Island Main Trunk is steeped in local and Maori history. Opened completely between Auckland and Wellington in 1908 after over 30 years of construction, the “Main Trunk” passes through many rural settlements and towns which were connected up to the major cities by the coming of the railway. The section we travel over covers the main centres of Pukekohe and Hamilton, followed by rural towns like Otorohanga, Te Kuiti and Taumarunui. The railway geography is diverse, from rolling hills to steep gradients. Our journey passes through conservation land, farms and forests.
Selected Highlights Include:
This heritage train operated by the Glenbrook Vintage Railway will be hauled by restored locomotive DBR1254. Originally built as a DB class locomotive by General Motors Diesel Canada in 1965, this locomotive was rebuilt by Clyde Engineering Australia in 1981. In 2017 the Glenbrook Vintage Railway took ownership of DBR1254 which underwent an intense overhaul before returning to mainline service in 2019.
The carriages date from 1939/1940 and would have made thousands of journeys up and down the main trunk. The carriages retain key features including the iconic flip-over seats, though have been tastefully redecorated for enhanced passenger comfort. The guard’s van that travels with these carriages provides an open viewing area for an uninterrupted view of the amazing countryside.
Full standard Terms and Conditions can be found here: https://www.gvr.org.nz/terms
the event that the NZ government imposes COVID-19 restrictions
preventing the GVR train tour from operating, a refund of monies paid
may be given, net of any outgoings or payments already made by GVR in
conjunction with the operation and organisation of these tours on
written application within 7 days of the scheduled date of travel.
Visit Ruapehu and Ruapehu District i-SITE Visitor Centre Conditions
These packages are organised through Visit Ruapehu and the Ruapehu District i-SITE Visitor Centres who handle all accommodation, transfers, and activities for these packages. Please contact them on 0800 647 483 or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org for their terms and conditions which apply to your booking.
All packages are subject to availability, after you place your
booking the i-SITE will confirm your arrangements with the individual
providers and operators.
If parts of your chosen package are unavailable, the i-SITE will work with you to provide a suitable substitution/customisation or we will refund you fully.