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20 Tunnel Rail-Cart Journey

Along the Forgotten World Highway

 Adventure at a relaxed pace; explore the hidden valleys of New Zealand’s hinterland by specially-designed self-drive rail carts. Glide along decommissioned heritage railway lines, guided through native bush and open hill country, across bridges, through the 20 historic tunnels and rural settlements that have long-since faded away. Roll on the rusty rails amidst breathtaking landscapes and discover a different vista as you emerge from each new tunnel.

The end of the line is the ‘Republic of Whangamomona’ – world famous in New Zealand! Spend a night in its historic hotel to mix with the locals before travelling back on the Forgotten Highway. Then on to another of New Zealand’s grand old ladies; the Chateau Tongariro, set magnificently amongst the tussock of Tongariro National Park with its three impressive mountains as a backdrop. A great way to experience pure rural New Zealand.

Your travel itinerary

Thursday 18 February

Auckland – Taumarunui

Lunch iconLunch Dinner iconDinner

Depart in comfort on the Northern Explorer train for our journey through the central North Island to Taumarunui. Lunch on board. On arrival transfer to our accommodation for one night and later visit New Zealand’s largest Alpaca farm for afternoon tea. A beautiful property to get up close with these friendly and unique animals. Return to Taumarunui for dinner at the Taumarunui RSA.

Friday 19 February

Taumarunui - Whangamomona

Breakfast iconBreakfast Lunch iconLunch Dinner iconDinner

First breakfast, then embark on our guided petrol-driven rail cart journey along the Forgotten World Railway – cameras at the ready! Meandering along the decommissioned railway lines through these remote and untamed yet serene King Country back blocks. Through 20 tunnels over 82km, you’ll be immersed in the Forgotten World and its colourful history. Arrive late afternoon with time to explore the ‘Republic of Whangamomona’. Your overnight stay in the iconic 100-year-old Whangamomona Hotel will only add to this memorable journey.

Saturday 20 February

Whangamomona – Chateau Tongariro

Breakfast iconBreakfast Lunch iconLunch Dinner iconDinner

This morning, trade the Forgotten World Railway for the Forgotten Highway as we coach State Highway 43 back to Taumarunui. Lunch today in the special setting of Lauren’s Lavender Farm adjacent to the Whanganui River. Relax as we coach up onto the Central Plateau to spend our last night at the Chateau Tongariro, where we will dine tonight.

Sunday 21 February

Chateau Tongariro – Auckland

Breakfast iconBreakfast

Transfer back to National Park train station early afternoon to meet the Northern Explorer, arriving in Auckland early evening.


  • Return Northern Explorer train travel
  • All transfers while on tour
  • Meals as specified
  • 3 nights’ accommodation (Taumarunui / Whangamomona  - shared facilities / Chateau Tongariro)
  • 20 Tunnel guided adventure rail tour
  • Ultimate Alpaca Farm experience
  • Lavender Farm experience
  • Pukekohe Travel escort (subject to 15 people travelling)


Cost Per Person *
Auckland - Auckland
Twin ShareSingle 
Two rooms left due to cancellation - be quick!  $1,494  $1,666

*This is a cash or cheque price. Credit cards will incur a 2% fee
*Itinerary and costs subject to change, airline and fuel charges and currency fluctuations prior to final payment


  • Domestic travel insurance – ask us for a quote
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Items unspecified

Booking Conditions

  • A non-refundable deposit of $300 per person will secure a place on the tour
  • Full payment by Friday 01 January 2021


  • Deposit is non refundable
  • After full payment 01 January 2021– no refund is available
  • All cancellation charges are on a per person basis
  • It is highly recommended that clients take out cancellation Travel Insurance – please ask us for a quote

Travel Insurance

  • It is highly recommended that clients take out Travel Insurance – please ask us for a quote

Health and Fitness

  • To ensure the tour is enjoyable for the whole group, a reasonable standard of fitness is required.
  • Mobility frames, scooters and wheelchairs are not practical or permitted

Note: Pukekohe Travel reserves the right to correct errors and omissions on our website without recourse.
* Itinerary subject to change