Explorer Tours have been conducting North & South Island tours since 2001. Our touring fleet is well equipped modern coaches all with DVD players, Air-conditioning and large panoramic windows.

When deciding on a suitable land transport operator it’s always a good idea to check on the company history. At Explorer Tours we have nothing to hide. Our 12 year safe travel history and reputation in the passenger transport market, we have seen our business grow every year, we retain many of the same customer relationships which have been with us from the very beginning. When you book with us expect a reliable service and a fully inclusive quote with no hidden add-ons or unwanted surprises.

Explorer Tours are a Qualmark endorsed Transport Company in the group travel business. This means we have been tested and our systems and procedures are audited every year

Our dedicated drivers are trained in;

  • Advanced driving
  • Commentary and route knowledge
  • First Aid certified
  • Basic vehicle maintenance
  • Emergency situation procedures.

Additional Services Available

At Explorer, we can assist with Itinerary scheduling, excursion advise and tour budget

Itinerary Assistance& Advice: New Zealand roads are varied in size and standard, we have 4 lane motorways in Cities like Auckland yet some of our provincial roads can be considerably smaller so travel times are slower. At the time you book with us, discuss travel times which are often difficult to calculate for our international customers.

: To assist with our inbound tour groups, we also offer to provide pre-paid sim cards to our customers. This allows you to arrive in New Zealand and know in advance your New Zealand based phone number. At Explorer tours, we prefer Vodafone as our main phone supplier. Their current rates for phone and data can be viewed on their website. Please let us know if you would like a New Zealand Sim Card on your arrival.

Hi Paul,

Everything went great and we also enjoyed Brian’s company a lot!!! Thank you for the final invoice and thank Darryl and Brian a lot for all the help and service!
Hope to come to New Zealand again in the future and if we do I’ll definitely contact you again!

Best regards,

Caspar Geelhoed | Producer

Special interest tours

University Tour – Geology and Geography

University of Nottingham

In 2011 the University of Nottingham were searching for an Auckland based coach company to provide a comfortable touring coach as their transport solution for 19 day North & South Island Geology & Geography tour. After contacting Explorer Tours regarding the itinerary they settled on one of our 49 seat Mercedes tour coaches and once our quote was accepted and confirmed we set about finalising the details: organising Cook straight ferry crossings for the coach and passengers, sites of interest and importantly selecting the right coach driver for the journey. When spending such a long time with a group for long distance travel, the most important part of this (or any)tour was to have the right Coach Captain, someone with an impeccably safe driving record and an in-depth knowledge of both Islands, particularly his local rock formation knowledge! Our drivers are carefully chosen and matched to the most appropriate tours and Ben has many years of experience of North & south Island touring and together with the right coach, comfortable and plenty of luggage space, it was a perfect match. The Tour was a great success and provided the University with a first-hand look at the beautiful scenery and Mountains of New Zealand. We have over the years had literally hundreds of tours and look forward to every single one of them but this one really encompassed all of the natural wonders of both Islands.

University Tour –New Zealand’s North Island Ferns

University of California (UCLA) Jepson Herberium

A 10 day sell-out tour of New Zealand’s North Island was organised by Alan Smith of the Jepsom Herbarium and the plan was to visit as many of the forests as possible, from the famous Waipoua in the far North, the Pureora forest in the remote central plateau and then on to the Western Egmont National Park, finishing at the little known Kaitoke forest 50 km’s from Wellington.It was an amazing itinerary and 2300km of visiting some of the North Islands most isolated and beautiful regions.

Explorer Tours were chosen by UCLA as their tour bus company because of our willingness to help organise the itinerary,accommodation and meals and also to provide snacks and hot drinks when in the remote forest area locations. This was one of the criteria that proved decisive in Explorer being selected- an easy solution to the problem- our driver would carry a gas cooker on board with the necessary kitchen equipment and keep everyone well fed and very happy. This saved time which then gave the group more time to locate and find some of New Zealand’s 200 different species of rare native ferns.The tour coach hired was a luxury 49 seat Mercedes coach, its air conditioned interior and comfortable seats made it perfect for open road travel in the summer.

Choir Groups-Tours

Brisbane Birralee Voices Choir Tour – June 2012

Brisbane Birralee Voices Choir is acknowledged at home and abroad as one of Australia’s finest children’s choirs and we were very proud to be chosen as their coach company for their New Zealand tour of Auckland and Rotorua. With 47 children and 7 adults to cater to, the BBV choir opted to hire one of our 10 seat vansas a support vehicle in addition to one of our Volvo49 seat tour coaches; this also provided the much needed safety and flexibility when traveling with so many children. Karen was chosen as being the perfect Coach Captain for this group, her knowledge of places the group would be visiting was a real asset and she loved every minute of it including the singing practice on the coach everywhere they went. The BBV Choir sang at various Auckland Schools before visiting Rotorua and Mount Maunganui for 4 days. It all went very smoothly with all transfers arriving safely and on time at their many destinations and we wish BBV choir the very best in their future trips and competitions around the World. We certainly would welcome any more Choir trips and tours to New Zealand- they bring a lot of joy with their amazing voices.

TV documentary & reality shows- Filming in New Zealand


Down2Earth is a new HD documentary series from Canada that will air on APTN in 2012. The series features Indigenous people from across Canada and around the globe that are using traditional knowledge to find solutions to environmental issues that are affecting their communities and territories. Down2Earth features stunning visuals of the world’s natural environments and where better to film than New Zealand!

They contacted us regarding a visit to New Zealand to film Season 2 of Down2Earth. They were a small crew but with a lot of valuable camera equipment and had seen our Mercedes Sprinter on our Webster page. This was the ideal vehicle for their Tour as it had 11 comfortable leather seats, air-conditioning and plenty of luggage space. Another request was for a flexible and patient driver because of the demands of filming; we are pleased to say that Down2Earth’s Tour was a huge success and Karen did a fine job.


Hello Paul.

My television crew was very pleased with the Explorer Tours bus and driver Karen on their tour of the North Island last week.

Barbara Hager
Producer – Down2 Earth
1320 Bond Street
Victoria, BC V8S 1C4

TV reality Show

Endemol- Love is in the Air Tour September 2012

Endemol (the world’s largest independent TV production company) contacted Explorer Tours regarding their upcoming film tour to New Zealand. They were coming to record a show called “Love is in the Air” and they wanted a coach and driver to accompany them from the 9th-17th September. Filming on a tight schedule brings many challenges and Endemol had some specific requirements and some long days planned with an itinerary that could change at any time. They asked if we could be patient, flexible, fun and most importantly could we keep a secret?
Yes we could and our lips are sealed. The show is about reuniting relatives who live in faraway countries and haven’t seen each other in a very long time. The persons traveling know what is going to happen but the relatives who live in New Zealand have no idea and cannot know until the last moment so it was very important to be discreet.
We are pleased to say that the tour was a great success and went without a hitch and the families were back together again- are really excellent tour and we were proud to be the transport solution for Endemol.
Choice of fleet – Our 22 seat mid-sized coach for spacious comfort and manoeuvrability for ease of getting into difficult places and locations.

4/ Field Days-Hamilton & Farm tours

Murray Goulburn— Waikato Farm Tour incorporating Hamilton Field Days at Mystery Creek.

Murray Goulburn is an Australian milk processor, similar to Fonterra in New Zealand and their motto is “Healthy Cooperation-it’s good for everyone” and we definitely agree! In June 2012they enquired about a Farm tour of the Waikato and after listening to our suggestions and itinerary ideas they accepted our quote and booked our spacious 22 seat coach for a comprehensive tour through the Waikato region and also to visit Rotorua and Napier. Hamilton Field Days is a big annual event attracting thousands of people from New Zealand and Australia, the young farmers from Murray Goulburn certainly had a great day out at Mystery Creek. Brian was the Coach Captain for the tour as his local knowledge of the Waikato and the dairy industry would be invaluable to our Australian guests, his sense of humour and attention to detail certainly added to the tour. The highly manoeuvrable 22 seat coach was the ideal size for this group as it could access all of the Farms on the itinerary. Murray Goulburnwere a fantastic group of young farmers and we really enjoyed carrying them around -they had a great time and we look forward to more Farm tours in 2013.

AGCO Corp- Local Auckland &Hamilton Field days- June 2012

With roots firmly established in the farm equipment industry, AGCO has a brand heritage reaching back to the mid-1800s. Explorer Tours were able to provide matching fleet, 49 seat high deck tour coaches for the group on their visit to New Zealand. When AGCO confirmed their booking with us for their local transfers and travel to Mystery Creek Field days in Hamilton,it meant we had all of our coach fleet booked out with various groups for this busy event! It’s never a problem finding the right driver for this time of the year as if the drivers weren’t’t going to be driving a group down to Hamilton then they would definitely be going to Hamilton Field Days anyway! Remember to book early for next year’s Field Days- it is a really popular week and a great day out for all the family and remember to bring your gumboots.

5/ ASSA Abloy – V8’s Hamilton- New Race venue Pukekohe-2013

This year’s Hamilton ITM400 race was a great spectacle and crowd numbers at the final V8 Super cars outing in Hamilton were up 11,000 on the previous year. The cars roared, the sun shone and the fans mourned what organisers described as a very successful final outing for the race in Hamilton. Never fear petrol heads the new venue for 2013 has been chosen and it will be at Pukekohe Raceway. This is another event that the drivers are queuing up to drive you down for a day of racing! ASSA Abloy chose Explorer Tours as their preferred coach hire company taking staff and valued clients to all 3 days of the competition, they were a pleasure to deal with from start to finish. We are sure it will be as equally as popular next year so remember to book early no matter what size group you are.

Feedback from ASSA Abloy

I just wanted to thank you sincerely again for the help on Sat night. You certainly went beyond the call of duty and it was most appreciated.
Thanks once again,

Natasha van Vuuren

Executive Assistant to General Manager

ASSA ABLOY New Zealand Limited

6/ Classic StandardBreds Tour – April 2011

Classic StandardBreds chose Explorer for their upcoming tour to New Zealand for the Inter dominion Harness Racing Series. The transport arrangements included visits to Alexandra Park for the night race meetings and trips to Waitomo Caves, Rotorua and Cambridge Raceway- it was an action packed itinerary for 10 days. The organiser chose two of our comfortable and matching twin door 49 seat coaches, that are perfect for such journeys and are quick to load and un-load at the many destinations. For our drivers with an interest in horses, travelling with a great group of Australian horse experts it was a fun filled and entertaining tour. Harness racing at Alexandra Park in Auckland or Cambridge Raceway in the Waikato is a great day or night out for Social Clubs or Company Christmas functions and Parties.

Explorer coach hire Auckland NZ