In March Northland Inc launched the first three Northland Journeys ('byways') to encourage visitors to spread out and spend more time discovering Northland, through a series of themed routes which offer in-depth experiences of the region.
A recent digital campaign by Northland Inc and co-funded by Whangarei District Council promoted the first three byways and attracted around 18,000 entries – most of those from Aucklanders keen for a weekend getaway.
The travel packages, each valued at more than $1,000, take people off the beaten track with specially designed downloadable and printable maps that provide visitors with a unique set of richer routes telling more stories of Northland and revealing some of the local favourite places. Since the competition ended two more Journeys have been developed, with more to come.
Anna Cleaver is used to victory in the sporting world, but it’s her recent win of a travel package showcasing a Northland road trip that will bring Anna and her American fiancé Michael to the region. Anna, who lives in Cambridge, won the travel voucher for “Where Giants Gather” - a Northland Journey that highlights the Whangārei Town Basin to Whangārei Heads route.
Having moved back to New Zealand from the US around a year ago, Anna is looking forward to introducing Michael – who has not yet come further north than the Matakana Coast - to Northland. Anna says retiring from the very full schedule of a professional athlete means she can now explore the beautiful scenery of Northland, but won’t completely forgo her post-retirement fitness regime during the getaway, with plans to swim, run and cycle while here.
Ryan Lemmens from Auckland and his partner Lauren recently travelled around the South Island for a month and have been planning to come to Northland, with Dive! Tutukaka’s ‘A Perfect Day’ trip on their to-do list for some time. When Ryan saw a Northland Inc competition on Facebook to win Northland Journey ‘Into the Wide Blue Yonder’ that included A Perfect Day, he entered immediately.
Into the Wide Blue Yonder follows a circular route from Whangārei Falls to Tutukaka and on to Hikurangi.
Ryan and Lauren have fast-paced careers as paramedics so are looking forward to the relaxed pace of their journey, and to experience some of Northland’s beaches and water sports while they’re here.
The third byway journey – the Ancient Kauri Trail – was won by Angeline Lambert of Wellington