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

19th November - 3rd December 2020

Join us on a 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, mountains, lush forest, stunning lakes, geysers and much more.
We begin by exploring some 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 to Auckland and heading further North.
We will then explore Northland’s scenery, offering ideal locations for long exposure photography, wild coastlines, waterfalls, and classic jetty shots. From giant sand dunes created by volcanoes; the meeting place of the Pacific Ocean and the Tasman Sea; stunning bays; waterfalls; Kauri forest—Northland has it all!
The never-ending summers of Northland make it a beautiful place to relax. As it is a deceptively-large region, we have set aside plenty of time to explore and capture some of the lushest environment in the country.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Journeys by chartered boat
  • NZ’s four largest volcanoes
  • The North Islands best beaches
  • 4WD trip on private farmland

Auckland - Auckland

  • Bay of Islands and Hokianga
  • Cape Reinga & Te Paki Sand Dunes
  • Rotorua Geothermal Area
  • Tongariro National Park
  • Mt Taranaki and Taranaki coastline
  • Rangitoto Island

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. Rotorua marks the edge of the land of volcanoes. A hub for geothermal activity in New Zealand, the city features hot springs, waterfalls, bubbling pools of mud, and impressive hues from acids boiling beneath the earth. It is a land of mysteries; a photographer’s dream.
  • Day 2 - Rotorua

    Today we explore the Rotorua area, capturing a hidden hot water waterfall that is often missed by many. Later today, we travel further afield⁠—deep into the forest⁠—to experience the Bay’s most majestic waterfall, 65m tall in full flood. This location is simply breathtaking; and if we like, we can go above the cliff line to 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 before moving on to Taupo, visiting Huka Falls en route. Although not particularly high, these falls are one of the most voluminous in New Zealand: here, the entire Waikato River (New Zealand’s longest river) plunges over an ignimbrite cliff. After we’ve had our fill of the falls, we journey south, past Lake Taupo. This is both New Zealand’s largest lake and the site of the country’s greatest-ever recorded eruption (186AD): an event noted by both the Chinese and the Romans. We spend the evening photographing the sunset over Mt Ruapehu⁠—at 2797m, this is the highest mountain in the North Island, and the country’s loftiest volcano.
  • Day 4 - Tongariro

    Active volcanoes Mt Tongariro and Ngauruhoe offer striking subjects for a sunrise shoot; Ngauruhoe, in particular, bears the distinctive “classic” volcano shape. Today, we explore a number of the area’s stunning waterfalls, staying again within Tongariro National park for another chance of a sunset over the mountains.
  • Day 5 - Tongariro - Taranaki

    We pass through several small towns today, pausing 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 a set of unusual round boulders in a forest. We arrive in Taranaki in time to photograph the sun setting over a dramatic coastline—a scene including volcanoes that have eroded into offshore islands.
  • Day 6 - Taranaki

    If any New Zealand volcano has the perfect shape, it is Mt Taranaki⁠—which, at 2518m, is the second-highest peak in the North Island. This volcano 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 excellent photography opportunities. This afternoon, we can journey further south⁠—to the North Island’s western-most point at Cape Egmont, well known for its iconic lighthouse⁠—or north, to capture dramatic black sand beaches.
  • Day 7 - Taranaki - Auckland

    Today we start the return trek toward Auckland. We head back through the Waikato via Raglan, where we shall stop by Bridal Veil Falls⁠—the highest waterfall in the North Island. In the afternoon, we continue our drive back to Auckland.
  • Day 8 - Auckland - Rangitoto Island

    Today you have a free day to explore Auckland, with the inclusion of 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

    Today we drive to the beautiful Hokianga Harbour, where we will stay tonight. En route, we stop to explore native Kauri forests, reaching the Harbour for sunset over the West Coast. The scenes we will be photographing today are unlike any you’ll find elsewhere across the country.
  • Day 10 - Hokianga - Cape Reinga

    Today we say goodbye to Hokianga and begin to make our way to one of mainland New Zealand’s furthest-north points, Cape Reinga. We will be stopping en route to capture several picturesque jetties—these are well-suited to black and white ‘fine art’ style photographs. As we drive up, we will check into our next hotel before heading to Cape Reinga, a location of great significance both geographically and culturally. A beautiful lighthouse sits high above the meeting of the Tasman Sea and the Pacific Ocean: this is where we shall capture sunset tonight.
  • Day 11 - Cape Reinga - Karikari Peninsula

    Today, we head back up the Cape to the Te Paki sand dunes—humongous desert-like dunes created over millions of years through volcanic eruptions. Later, we travel down to the Karikari Peninsula and its white-sand beaches, where we will spend the next two nights at the luxury Carrington Estate Hotel.
  • Day 12 - Karikari Peninsula

    We will spend the day exploring the stunning Karikari Peninsula, with its white silica sand beaches and serene bays, fringed with the red blossoms of pohutukawa trees.
  • Day 13 - Karikari Peninsula - Russell

    This morning, we set off toward the picturesque Bay of Islands: the historic Duke of Marlborough Hotel in Russell will be our home for the next two nights. Russell features many historic sites, as it was the first capital of New Zealand during European colonisation. Our day ends with a sunset shoot over the picturesque coastline, on one of many beautiful bays nearby.
  • Day 14 - Russell

    We have an early start for a sunrise shoot this morning, followed by breakfast back at the hotel. On our chartered boat, we spend the day exploring the Bay of Islands by sea, including parts of the coastline not accessible by road. We have some beautiful island stops to look forward to, and we will 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 more stunning beaches. Today, we depart the Bay of Islands and head towards Whangarei and the beautiful Whangarei Falls. In the afternoon, we drive back to Auckland. This is the last stop on our journey, and we will be driving back to Auckland in the afternoon to meet with evening flights from the airport.
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 PRICE INCLUDES

 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.
  • Accommodation & Food

    Accommodation Type: Our tours use a standard of 4-4+ star hotel/lodge accommodation and we try where possible to stay 2 nights at each hotel. We sometimes will book a 1-night stay at a 3-star motel to be close to a place where we are shooting for sunrise/sunset at a location that does not have any other options.
    Single Room Upgrades: All our tour prices are based on twin/double share rooms. If you are travelling alone you can book a single room upgrade for $1,400 or we can try and pair you with another traveller for all/part of the tour. If we can not pair you with another traveller for all/part of the tour you may need to pay for a single room upgrade.
    Food: The price tour includes breakfast each morning, this is normally at the hotel but sometimes a local cafe. Lunches and dinner (apart from any listed as being included) are at your own expense. We will stop at a cafe/shop for lunch and book a table for the group for dinner each day at a local restaurant. Sometimes evening meal times might be early/late to fit around the time of sunset. New Zealand had great food and caters well for any preferences like allergies, vegetarian etc.
  • 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