Travel Digest - - TRAIN JOURNEYS -

New Zealand’s long­est run­ning pas­sen­ger ser­vice, the North­ern Ex­plorer, is a long dis­tance scenic train run­ning be­tween Auck­land and Welling­ton. This iconic, ev­er­chang­ing day­time jour­ney through the heart of the North Is­land of­fers a di­verse range of scenery in one day. The jour­ney takes you past rolling green farm­land, quaint coun­try towns and along rocky coasts. Then through Ton­gariro Na­tional Park, with its three vol­canic moun­tains – Ton­gariro, Ngau­ruhoe and Ruapehu – a place of ex­tremes and sur­prises, where snow-blan­keted fields, an­cient lava flows and dense beech forests can be seen side by side. Tra­verse stun­ning river gorges and through the Rau­rimu Spi­ral near Na­tional Park – an amaz­ing feat of rail­way engi­neer­ing. The North­ern Ex­plorer op­er­ates a six-day timetable through­out the year, depart­ing Auck­land on Mon­day, Thurs­day and Satur­day and depart­ing Welling­ton on Tues­day, Fri­day and Sun­day.

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