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BOOK YOUR NORTHERN EXPLORER, COASTAL PACIFIC, and TRANZ ALPINE TRAIN  Journeys online 
 COASTAL PACIFIC Operating days: 29 SEPT 2022 – 01 February 2023 Thursday to Sunday | 02 February - 30th April 2023 7 days a week  | 21 SEPT 2023 - 29 April 2024 Thursday to Sunday
NOT OPERATING :01 MAY 2023 - 20 SEPT 2023 | 29 APRIL 2024 - 01 JULY 2024 
NORTHERN EXPLORER Operating days: Northbound (Wednesday, Friday & Sunday) | Southbound (Monday, Thursday & Saturday)
TRANZ ALPINE Operating days: 14 JAN 22 – 24 DEC 22 Friday to Monday | 26 DEC 22 – 30 APRIL 23 7 days a week | 28 APRIL 2023 - 28 SEPT 2023 Friday to Monday | 29 SEPT 2023 - 6 MAY 2024 7 days a week | 10 MAY 2024 - 30 JUNE 2024 Friday to Monday
 Face masks are no longer mandatory on any of these train services Northern Explorer, Coastal Pacific, and Tranz Alpine trains. However, we do recommend you continue wearing facemasks for your own safety while moving around the train. On-board crews will continue to wear facemasks for the time being.

 

 
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The Northern Explorer

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DEPARTS

DESTINATION

WHEN

RETURN

 

About the journey

The Northern Explorer train service is a scenic rail journey through the five unique geographical regions of the North Island - travelling between Auckland, New Zealand's largest city - home of the Sky Tower, through the central heartland of the North Island to Wellington - New Zealand's harbour capital and arts and culture centre.

Along the way, you will see fantastic views of New Zealand farmland, rugged bush landscapes before ascending up the world famous Raurimu Spiral to the volcanic plateau passing the majestic volcanoes of Mt Tongariro, Mt Ngauruhoe and Mt Ruapehu - the home of the North Island skifields and descending through stunning river gorges to the farming landscapes and rocky sea scapes of the lower North Island - all from large panoramic windows and the open air viewing deck of the Northern Explorer train.

The Northern Explorer carriages have an advanced air bag suspension system for quieter and smoother travel, un-tinted, non-reflective, panoramic side and roof windows to capture the dramatic coastal and mountain views of the magnificent North Island. GPS triggered journey commentary in five languages at your seat via headphones, plus information displays and overhead HD video and are centrally heated/air conditioned for passenger comfort.

The Carriages

Each carriage has onboard washroom/toilet facilities, with '2 Seat-Aisle-2 Seat' seating either as reclining forward facing seats with head and foot rests or 'Table Group' (4 people around a table) seating allowing you to experience the amazing views of the magnificent North Island, through panoramic side and roof windows, while enjoying the company of other passengers.

The Northern Explorer train has a café carriage offering a range of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, snacks and light meals and a viewing carriage for sweeping views of the North Island.

For mobility-impaired passengers, there are spaces for wheel chairs and a disabled public toilet. Wheelchair hoists provide access to the café carriage from track level.

Disabilities

For hearing-impaired passengers - a hearing loop covers all of the café carriage saloon and serving area. The Northern Explorer train is a reserved seating 'One Class' non-smoking service.

Operating Days

NORTHERN EXPLORER operating days: Northbound (Wednesday, Friday & Sunday) | Southbound (Monday, Thursday & Saturday)

Stops along the way include Papakura, Hamilton, Otorohanga (Waitomo), Taumarunui, National Park, Ohakune, Palmerston North and Paraparaumu.

More Details

The Northern Explorer train connects with various bus and coach services at Hamilton from Rotorua and Tauranga and at Palmerston North and Wellington to and from other North Island destinations.

So, sit back and enjoy a genuine kiwi rail experience on the Northern Explorer train travelling through 5 unique regions of the North Island with its spectacular scenic beauty.