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“Wow...”

Northern Explorer Train
Ranked #19 of 236 things to do in Wellington
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: The Great Journeys of New Zealand operate a network of long distance passenger trains and inter-island ferries. We take passengers across New Zealand in comfort and style through some of the most scenic areas of the North and South Islands. The Northern Explorer is The Great Journeys of New Zealand's Auckland to Wellington train. This epic journey roams through the heart of the North Island, through an array of changing landscapes of sea coasts, farmlands, river viaducts and the volcanic Central Plateau. The service operates a 6 day timetable. The Auckland to Wellington train departs on Monday, Thursday and Saturday and the Wellington to Auckland train departs on Tuesday, Friday & Sunday.
Useful Information: Wheelchair access, Food available for purchase, Activities for older children, Activities for young children, Bathroom facilities
Reviewed May 9, 2012

May be a long journey but something you have to do at least once. Was a great experience, so much to see.

1  Thank MDAW23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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310 - 314 of 370 reviews

Reviewed April 29, 2012

This trip is worth doing for the Raurimu spiral alone! We started in Paraparaumu and finished in Auckland. Staff are excellent and very knowledgeable - really good commentary for most of the trip. Good stop for lunch - luckily as the food on the train is fairly predictable - you won't go hungry but it's not exciting - good cafe stop for lunch and good coffee in the cafe. Coffee on the train is awful - but then I'm a fussy Wellingtonian! Hamilton to Auckland leg is fairly boring and slow - it was unfortunate that we struck a busy time on the approach to Auckland and travelled very slowly for the last few miles. The views of the mountains at halfway make it a fabulous journey and the autumn colours are a great bonus.

1  Thank JKWG
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 19, 2012

I took the train from Wellington to Auckland. Beautiful landscapes along the journey especially after leaving Wellington region and before going to the Auckland region. Basically the seats on the right hand side have better views ;-) Don't forget to plan ahead and prepare yourself for getting a spot at the observation deck where you can have a great view and take pictures when the train passes the major attractions e.g. the three mountains.
Have to say though the train shakes a lot and a replacement by new cars seems necessary.

3  Thank HungChue
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 9, 2012

We travelled from Auckland to Welington (12 hours) and found 70% of the journey interesting. If you're not into scenery though you might definitely think about an alternative way of travelling. It's definitely a relaxing, no pressure way to travel.
If you're going to do the full trip you need to plan ahead and be organised with drinks and food. There is a buffet car, and a 30 minute stop at National Park, but you will need extra snacks and cold drinks.
I was surprised that people were travelling with small children, 12 hours is a long time to entertain them in such a restricted environment.
People hogging the viewing area at the rear of the train was an issue at times but fortunately the windows on the train are very big so there's always a very good view wherever you're sitting.
Overall it's worth the effort

2  Thank joeyb66
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 9, 2012

We were blessed with fantastic weather and every look out of the window was a postcard worthy view.
Lovely, helpful staff who really cared and wanted to make your journey the best experience it could be.
Was reall pleased with the range of well priced food on board. The lunch stop at National Park was magestic and we thought the cafe staff were wonderful.
Would definitely choose this way to travel to Wellington again.

1  Thank JosieHanley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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