Duration: 15 days
Location: Northland - Rotorua - Tongariro -Taranaki
Price: $10,480 (NZD)
Mgt Ngauruhoe

19th November - 3rd December 2020

15-day photography tour showcasing some of the best landscapes New Zealand’s North Island has to offer. This tour offers perfect situations for long exposure photography, wild coastlines, waterfalls, volcanic activity and mountains. On this tour, we will explore Northland, all the way to the very northern tip of New Zealand, before traversing across the North Island’s extraordinarily active geothermal landscape.
Historically, Northland was the main hub for activity in New Zealand and to date retains numerous remarkable landmarks: Russell - the former capital; the Treaty of Waitangi grounds are the home of modern New Zealand; giant sand dunes created by Volcanoes; the meeting place of the Pacific Ocean and the Tasman Sea; Kauri forest.
We will also see many of the most magnificent volcanic landscapes of New Zealand, including the World Heritage Tongariro National Park and Mt Taranaki, arguably the country’s most shapely mountain before looping back around to Auckland.
Taking the extra time to fully explore these wonders can never be underestimated as a necessity, their aura can inspire some amazing photography. Whilst exploring you shall also view stunning lakes, spectacular waterfalls, mysterious boulders and pools of bubbling mud with geysers.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Chartered boats in various locations
  • All the main volcanoes
  • Travel where the Pacific and Tasman Sea meet
  • Explore New Zealand’s main volcanoes
  • 4WD trip on private farmland

Auckland - Auckland

  • Bay of Islands and Hokianga
  • Cape Reinga & Te Paki Sand Dunes
  • Rotorua
  • Mt Ruapehu, Tongariro and Ngauruhoe
  • Mt Taranaki and Taranaki coastline

ITINERARY

  • Day 1 - Auckland / Rotorua

    After Airport and city hotel pickups we depart Auckland for Rotorua, passing through the lush rolling farmland of the Waikato en route. Once in Rotorua, we have reached the land of volcanoes, a hub for geothermal activity in New Zealand - with hot springs, waterfalls, bubbling pools of mud and impressive hues from acids boiling beneath the earth - a mysterious photographers dream.
  • Day 2 - Rotorua

    Today we explore the Rotorua area, including capturing a hidden Hot Water Waterfall which is often missed by many. Later today we can travel further afield deep into the forest to experience the Bays’ most majestic waterfall at 65m tall in full flood. This location is simply breathtaking. We have the option to go above the cliff line and photograph another hidden fall. After dinner, we will end our day with a long exposure session at one of the many jetties along Lake Tarawera.
  • Day 3 - Rotorua / Tongariro

    This morning we head out to photograph a geothermal reserve close to Rotorua. South of Rotorua, we head to Taupo, visiting Huka Falls en route. Although not particularly high, these falls are one of the most voluminous in New Zealand, where the entire Waikato River (New Zealand’s longest river) plunges over ignimbrite cliffs. Afterwards, we journey south past Lake Taupo, New Zealand’s largest lake, and the site of its greatest ever recorded eruption - in 186AD - an event noted by both the Chinese and Romans. We spend the evening photographing the sunset over Mt Ruapehu, at 2797m the highest mountain in the North Island, and the country’s loftiest volcano.
  • Day 4 - Tongariro

    Mts Tongariro and Ngauruhoe offer striking subjects for a sunrise shoot. Both are active volcanoes, with Ngauruhoe having the distinctive classic volcano shape. We will then head around other various waterfalls and spots along the road before heading back to our accommodation for the night.
  • Day 5 - Tongariro / Taranaki

    We pass through several small towns and pause to capture the landscapes of the Rangitikei Gorge en route to Taranaki. Flowing from the Kaimanawa Ranges, this important river carves its way through pale cliffs made of papa, a type of mudstone that creates impressive features. During the afternoon we take a 4WD trip across private farmland to visit set of unusual round boulders in a forest.We arrive in Taranaki in time to photograph the sunset over the dramatic coastline, which includes former volcanoes, now eroded into offshore islands.
  • Day 6 - Taranaki

    If any New Zealand volcano has the perfect shape, it is Mt Taranaki, which at 2518 m is the second-highest peak in the North Island. It forms the centrepiece of Egmont National Park, one of the country’s oldest national parks. Wonderfully stunted forest and shapely waterfalls flowing over old lava escarpments offer some excellent photography. Journeying south, we round the North Island’s western-most point at Cape Egmont, well known for its iconic lighthouse with Mt Taranaki rising behind it. This is where we will also shoot sunset this evening.
  • Day 7 - Taranaki / Auckland

    Today we set off back toward Auckland after a sunrise shoot. We shall be heading back from the South of the Waikato, via Raglan, where we shall stop by Bridal Veil Falls - the highest waterfall in the North Island.
  • Day 8 - Auckland / Rangitoto Island

    Today you have a free day to explore to Auckland, with the inclusion for a return ferry ticket out to explore the volcanic landscape Rangitoto Island, a pest-free island that sits in the Hauraki Gulf near Auckland. It is the youngest volcano in New Zealand and offers some great photography opportunities from old lava flow to beautiful Pohutukawa trees.
  • Day 9 - Auckland - Hokianga

    The tour with early-morning pick up from Auckland City/Airport. Afterwards, we drive to the beautiful Hokianga Harbour, where we shall also be staying for the next two evenings. En route, we will stop to explore native Kauri forests. In the evening we will photograph the sunset over Hokianga Harbour on the West Coast - vastly contrasting to the scenes we find around the rest of the country.
  • Day 10 - Hokianga

    The rugged coastlines and picturesque jetties of this area are well suit black and white ‘fine art’ style photographs. We also capture images of intriguing round boulders, similar to the iconic ones found in the South Island at Moeraki.
  • Day 11 - Hokianga - Cape Reinga

    Today we part from Hokianga to begin making way to one of mainland New Zealand’s furthest North points and Cape Reinga. As we drive up, we will check into our next hotel before heading to the Te Paki sand dunes. These humongous dunes have been created over millions of years through volcanic eruptions.
  • Day 12 - Cape Reinga

    Departing from our hotel early in the day, we travel North once again to Cape Reinga. This location is of great significance in New Zealand geographically and culturally. Here we find one of the mainland’s furthest North points and a beautiful lighthouse sits high above where the Tasman Sea and the Pacific Ocean meet.
  • Day 13 - Cape Reinga / Russell

    This morning we set off toward the Bay of Islands after a sunrise shoot in Houhora Harbour. We drive to Russell and the historic Duke of Marlborough Hotel, our home for the next two nights in the picturesque Bay of Islands. During European colonisation, Russell was briefly the capital of New Zealand and features many historic sites. The day ends with a sunset shoot over the picturesque coastline, on one of the many beautiful bays close by.
  • Day 14 - Russell

    An early start enables a sunrise shoot before we head back to the hotel for breakfast. A chartered boat today enables us to explore the Bay of Islands by sea, including parts of the coastline not accessible by road. We will send the day stopping at a number of the beautiful islands to capture these at our own pace.
  • Day 15 - Russell - Auckland

    Another early morning sunrise shoot across the Bay of Islands allows you to hone your field technique and capture some more of the areas stunning beaches. Today we depart the bo of islands and head towards Whangarei to capture the beautiful Whangarei Falls. In the afternoon, we drive back to Auckland to meet with late afternoon flights from the Airport.
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 PRICE INCLUDES

  • 15 days Photography Tuition
  • Boat trip in the Bay of Islands
  • Ferry trip to Rangitoto Island
  • Entry to Rotorua Geothermal Reserve
  • 4WD trip across private farmland
  • 14 nights hotel accommodation (twin-share, single upgrade available)
  • 14 breakfasts
  • Transport during the tour
  • Copy of Pocket Guide to Landscape Photography
  • DOC concession fees
  • Donation to our Tongariro Conservation Project

 FURTHER INFORMATION

  • Class Size

    This tour runs with a maximum group size of 8 and 2 tutors, offering 1:4 ratio of tutors to guests. Limiting group sizes ensure we provide you with expert guidance, instruction, and personal attention according to your learning style. Smaller groups of up to 4 may only be led by one tutor.
  • Itinerary

    Our exact schedule each day will be determined according to the weather to allow for the best shooting, we may choose to swap out locations for other that are better suited to the conditions and we keep a flexible itinerary to accommodate this. We focus on spending as much time as possible out shooting, often from before dawn until sunset. During the tour, we will make time for some image review and processing session, we will fit these around times that are not optimum for shooting.
  • Transport

    Auckland pick up & drop off: We will pick you up early (approx 7-8 am) from any central hotel in Auckland, or Auckland Airport on the first day and provide transport to the whole tour. The tour will finish at Auckland Airport (or hotel drop off) at 5 pm to meet flights after 6 pm to the main cities.
  • Physical Difficulty

    A minimum level of physical activity is necessary to enjoy this tour. All locations we shoot will be within a short walk along the forest tracks or the coastline. These are sometimes uphill, over uneven ground, or rocky beaches and you will be carrying your own equipment. On this tour, there may be a couple of longer walk options (30-45 min one way) but if these are difficult for the group, we do have the option to split the group at these locations. If your fitness or mobility is an issue please let us know.
  • Experience

    Ideally, you will have a basic knowledge of photography and be comfortable adjusting camera settings such as aperture and shutter speed. An aim of this tour is to get you to the best locations, in the best light. While providing you on-location help from our experienced tutors, to come away with the hero shots of your own personal vision. We will have a brief session at the start of the tour, covering camera settings and controls, to be sure everyone is up to speed.
  • Equipment

    Camera Equipment: Our tours focus on how to use your camera, not your type of camera. A basic list of recommended camera equipment can be found here Clothing: A list of recommended clothing to bing on the tour can be found here
  • Booking & Payment

    A non-refundable deposit of NZD$700.00 is required to reserve your space for the workshop. The remaining balance is due 45 days prior to the start of the workshop. You may pay in full at time of booking, the balance (minus the deposit) will remain fully refundable until 45 days before the workshop.
    Booking and Cancellation Policy: Please click here for our booking and cancellation policy.

 TUTORS

Ken Wright & Shaun Branett: days 1-7 Richard Young & Shaun Branett: days 8-15