Overview

The North Island of New Zealand supports a host of unusual endemic land birds and a rich assemblage of marine birds. Our North Island tour is designed to seek almost every possible endemic and take full advantage of fabulous scenery. Beginning in Auckland, we target North Island Brown Kiwi, amongst a multitude of other species that will no doubt be lifers. A pelagic excursion then takes place in the Hauraki Gulf in search of the recently rediscovered New Zealand Storm Petrel and a myriad of other species. Continuing to the fabled Tiritiri Matangi Island, we will bird this predator-free reserve for the prehistoric South Island Takahe, strange North Island Kokako and Saddleback, before combing the Miranda shoreline for the bizarre Wrybill and numerous migrant waders. From here we visit the scenic Tongariro National Park in the centre of the North Island where we check fast-flowing streams for the rare Blue Duck. We finish our time on the North Island visiting the famous Zealandia Reserve searching for the endangered Little Spotted Kiwi, New Zealand Falcon and Stitchbird. With excellent lodging and meals, awe-inspiring scenery and fantastically friendly “Kiwis”, this is sure to be a tour of a lifetime!

Tour Facts Top Birds
North Island Brown Kiwi, Little Spotted Kiwi, North Island Kokako, North Island Saddleback, Whitehead, Rifleman, Stitchbird, South Island Takahe, Wrybill and Blue Duck
Habitats Covered
forest, beach, estuary and pelagic at sea
Expected Climate
subtropical with chances for occasional rain
Max Group Size
8 with 1 Rockjumper Leader and local leaders where necessary
Tour Pace & Walking
easy pace with undemanding walks. Most walks are on trails in reserves. Trails tend to be flat with reasonable space, but can be a little slippery when wet.
Accommodation
good hotels, wifi etc
Ease of Birding
most species are easily seen in open habitat. Kiwi are found at night and are wary of sound and light, so a fair amount of luck is needed.
Number of Species Expected
+-100
Other Attractions
Tongariro National Park
Photographic Opportunities
good to excellent
Tour Route Map Route Map Client Testimonials

The trip sounded good in the write-up but far exceeded our expectations. The pelagic trips were outstanding. The number of participants was perfect. Erik knew the birds and their calls/sounds and was very effective in getting everyone to see the birds. He called many pelagic IDs well before other people had even spotted the birds. Erik’s skills in managing the participants showed and his sense of humour added to his effectiveness. We thoroughly enjoyed our trip.

Erik Forsyth is one of the best guides. Extraordinary knowledge of birds as well as New Zealand itself. Personable and cheerful with a wonderful sense of humour. He is attentive birders' needs and made every effort to meet and exceed any special needs. He knew where to try and find the endemics, and the only one we didn't see or hear was because of inclement weather. We would definitely travel with Erik again should that opportunity present itself.

Erik Forsyth is not only extremely knowledgeable but also accommodating and fun.

Erik Forsyth's depth of knowledge of the birds of New Zealand was astounding. He delivered on all the species possible, and some even became good friends with multiple good sightings before the trip was through. He was good-natured and managed our group well throughout the long hours of driving on several days. The accommodations were good, as were the night walks for kiwis, the pelagic tours, and the visits to islands and refuges to see rare, endemic and endangered species. I loved the trip from the beginning to the end. We had good weather, too! Thanks, from the bottom of my heart, for the wonderful experience exploring New Zealand. I fell in love with the birds and the country. Thanks, Erik, for making it happen. Four stars, two thumbs up, all possible positive accolades.

We thoroughly enjoyed this trip. Erik Forsyth is an excellent guide. He managed a one-man show as bird guide, van driver and ground agent all the while maintaining a wonderful sense of humor.

Dates, Leaders and Pricing
2022 DEPARTURES
2023 DEPARTURES
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