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.