Taranaki Rhododendron Gardens

Deal details

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5 Day / 4 Night tour visiting the best Rhododendron Gardens in the central North Island with stays in New Plymouth, Whanganui and Tongariro National Park.

This New Zealand garden tour makes the most of New Plymouth during full rhododendron bloom. Meet private gardeners, wander magnificent Pukeiti and visit the exhibits in the unique Tawhiti Museum. Other highlights include visits to Hawera, Whanganui, Cross Hills garden and the Chateau Tongariro. This small group tour focuses on showcasing the most beautiful gardens of the North Island.

Priced from $2190pp share twin, $2490 single.


Trip Information

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General Inclusions

  • All transport by comfortable, air conditioned coach (maximum of 18 travellers).
  • Services of your knowledgeable MoaTours guide.
  • Quality accommodation chosen for a “sense of place".

All Meals Are Included

  • All breakfasts (B).
  • All lunches(L) including special lunches with: Debbie Robertson at her Crosshills Farm garden, Kio Kio; Rachel and Denzil Anselmi's Carmel Farm garden.
  • All dinners(D) including dinner at: The Chateau Tongariro, Tongariro National Park.

All Activities & Entrance Fees Are Included

  • Visit John Wilmshurst & Diana Montgomery at Waiongana Gardens on the riverside.
  • Meet Judi Gopperth at Hirst Cottage, where the garden features a green and white theme.
  • Meet Valda Poletti at Te Kainga Marire, a native garden of Global Significance.
  • Visit Tupare House and Garden.
  • At Pukeiti one of the world’s greatest collections of rhododendrons.
  • Meet June and Colin Lees at Cairnhill Garden.
  • Jenny and John Pease's Gravetye Garden, a formal garden with hedges and topiary.
  • Explore Nigel Ogle's unique creation Tawhiti Museum.
  • Jennifer and Ken Horner's large country garden, Puketarata.
  • Wilson family's Cross Hills garden, 7 hectares of park like grounds.
  • Enjoy the stunning views from The Chateau Tongariro.
  • Visit Jill Mouat's five acre Aramatai Gardens and ponds.
  • Crosshills farm garden just north of Otorohanga.

Included Sightseeing & Exploring

  • Travel through the heart of the Waikato dairy farmlands.
  • Drive through the limestone country of the Awakino Gorge.
  • Len Lye’s Wind Wand kinetic sculpture on the New Plymouth waterfront.
  • See lush rainforest on the lower slopes of Mt Taranaki.
  • Tour the city landmarks and heritage buildings of Whanganui.
  • The dramatic landscape of the Central Plateau.
  • Take the mountain road to the Top of the Bruce to enjoy a snowy panorama.
Day 1: Auckland - Piopio - New Plymouth
Walking on the Te Rewa Rewa Bridge New Plymouth

We travel through the Waikato farmlands and stop for lunch with Rachel and Denzil Anselmi at Carmel Farm in Piopio. Continuing through the limestone country of the Awakino Gorge we drive out to the Tasman coast.

Reaching New Plymouth we visit John Wilmshurst & Diana Montgomery's Waiongana Gardens.

Your home for two nights, The Waterfront Hotel,  is just across from Len Lye’s Wind Wand kinetic sculpture and the waterfront boardwalk. We dine in at the hotel's Salt restaurant.

Day 2: New Plymouth Gardens
Host and guests at Tupare Gardens in Taranaki

We meet Judi Gopperth at sweet Hirst Cottage, built in 1862, where the garden features a green and white theme and Valda Poletti at renowned Te Kainga Marire, a native garden of Global Significance.

We visit Tupare House and its beautiful garden then lunch at Monica's Eatery and visit the adjacent Len Lye Centre.

At Pukeiti wander the enchanted landscape of one of the world’s greatest collections of rhododendrons growing in lush rainforest on the slopes of Mt Taranaki. 

Day 3: New Plymouth - Cairnhill Garden - Hawera gardens - Whanganui
Views of Mt Taranaki in spring with cherry blossoms

We visit Pukekura Park then drive to the start of the Forgotten World Highway to Cairnhill Garden to meet June and Colin Lees and stroll in their large rhododendron and vibernum garden. In Hawera we visit Jenny and John Pease's Gravetye Garden, with sweeping lawns, hedges and topiary.

We explore Nigel Ogle's unique creation Tawhiti Museum and visit Jennifer and Ken Horner's country garden, Puketarata set high on a hill with magnificent views. We arrive in Whanganui. and tour the city's landmarks.

Day 4: Whanganui - Cross Hills Garden - Taihape - Ruapehu
Crosshills Gardens in Manawatū

We drive over to Kimbolton in the Manawatu region to discover another gem on our New Zealand garden tour. The Wilson family's Cross Hills garden boasts 7 hectares of park like grounds with a renowned collection of over 2000 rhododendrons and azaleas. Further colour is added by tree paeonies, candelabra primulas and perennials.

Continuing north to the Central Plateau we skirt around the slopes of Mount Ruapehu to Whakapapa village and The Chateau Tongariro Hotel in Tongariro National Park.

Day 5: The Chateau Tongariro - Aramatai Gardens - Crosshills - Auckland
Group walking in Aramatai Gardens, King Country

If the weather is kind we drive up the mountain road to the Top of the Bruce for a close up view of Mt Ruapehu and panoramic views of the region.

Then we’re bound for Taumarunui and Jill and Leo Mouat's Aramatai gardens  set around a lake. Then we drive north on to Crosshills Farm, near Otorohanga where our private lunch is hosted by Debbie and Fraser Robertson.
After lunch we drive north through the Waikato to Auckland. Thank you for choosing your New Zealand garden tour with MoaTours.

terms and conditions

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Prices are per person (pp) in NZD, twin share based on lead in season. All care is taken to promote correct pricing at time of publication but is dependent upon availability and will be confirmed at time of reservation. Valid for sale until sold out. Airfares not included unless specified. Offers are subject to availability and can change without notification due to fluctuations in charges and currency. Credit card surcharges apply. For full terms and conditions please contact a World Travellers consultant.