When one thinks of birding trips to far off places, New Zealand isn’t really the first country that comes to mind. But this fascinating and remote country isn’t only about rugby, rich Maori culture, world-class surfing and stunningly dramatic “Lord of the Rings” scenery. The “land of the long white cloud” (New Zealand’s indigenous Maori name) also offers some truly unique birding opportunities, unmatched anywhere on the planet.
This uniqueness is mostly due to New Zealand’s geographic isolation for 80 million years, leading to a specific and dynamic evolutionary ecology with incredibly high endemism. All bats, all reptiles, all amphibians, 80% of vascular plants and over 90% of insects are endemic to the islands. Some of these species are utterly and wonderfully bizarre!
For at least several million years before the arrival of humans, the islands had no terrestrial mammals except for bats and seals; the main component of the terrestrial fauna being insects and birds. The official bird species count for New Zealand is currently over 300. The terrestrial birds, wetland birds and seabirds in New Zealand each make up about a third of the total number of species. This is in sharp contrast to the composition of the global bird species where 90% are terrestrial.
This itinerary takes in much of New Zealand’s spectacular and diverse North Island scenery, whilst maximising our chances of seeing some of the 91 endemic species currently on the country’s official list, along with 70 globally threatened species. The tour also includes two exciting pelagic trips!
With excellent accommodation, truly epic scenery, first world infrastructure, great food, superb wine and friendly local “Kiwis”, this is sure to be a tour of a lifetime! Let’s go birding!
You have the option of combining this North Island tour with our South Island tour to form one big New Zealand birding extravaganza.
Get more detail about what to expect on this tour: Go to full itinerary
Safari starts in Auckland and ends in Wellington
Tour duration: 10 days / 9 nights
Type of accommodation: Comfortable / Mid-range
Next departure dates: To be confirmed
Private and small group, customised safaris can be booked on request for your preferred travel dates
-Stunning and dramatic scenery
Incredible birds with a high endemic count
Fantastic cuisine and wine
Relatively short travel distances between sites
Friendly local “Kiwis”
First world infrastructure
*Denotes Endemic species
• North Island Brown Kiwi*
• Little Spotted Kiwi*
• New Zealand Storm Petrel*
• South Island Takahe*
• North Island Kokako*
• North Island Saddleback*
• Blue Duck*
• New Zealand Falcon*
• New Zealand Kaka*
• Long-beaked and Short-beaked Common Dolphin
• New Zealand Fur Seal
• Leopard Seal
• Several whale species (depending on time of the year)
|Day 1||Arrival in Auckland, transfer to Kerikeri|
|Day 2||Kerikeri to Warkworth|
|Day 3||Warkworth – Hauraki Gulf Pelagic|
|Day 4||Warkworth to Tiritiri Matangi Island|
|Day 5||Tiritiri Matanga Island to Miranda|
|Day 6||Miranda to Whitianga|
|Day 7||Whitianga to Turangi|
|Day 8||Turangi to Napier|
|Day 9||Napier to Foxton|
|Day 10||Foxton to Wellington and Departure|
All our tours can be customised according to your specific requirements.
Get in touch with one of our team members for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org