A caravan has been stolen from Petone with a man still inside, police say.

The man, who was sleeping in the van, got a rude awakening when he realised he was on the move.

He contacted police just after midnight.

"This then gave police the inside word on the caravan's exact movements, as the man was able to update police on exactly where he was going," police said.

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The ute towed the caravan for what is believed to be about 6km from Petone, over the Wainuiomata hill, where police stopped it.

The driver of the ute was unaware anyone was in the caravan until he was met by the police unit.

The man inside the caravan was unharmed.

A pump-action BB gun and rounds of ammunition were found in the ute.

A 36-year-old Lower Hutt man is due in the Hutt Valley District Court this morning, charged with theft, possession of ammunition, and burglary (in relation to a previous offence).