The north and east of the North Island is expected to get drenched in the next 24 hours by a storm which caused slips, flooding and lightning across the North Island overnight.

The Met Service predicted heavy rain in the Coromandel Peninsula, Western Bay of Plenty, Gisborne and parts of Hawke's Bay through until tomorrow.

Rainfall of up to 120mm is expected due to a deep low moving eastwards, Met Service spokesman Bob McDavitt said.

The storm brought more than 1000 bolts of forked lightning to Auckland and Northland overnight, while heavy rain caused slips and flooding which resulted in road closures in the central North Island and Manawatu.

Rain also caused slips in the Manawatu Gorge and contractors were called in to keep the road open.

The rain, along with a string of earthquakes, also brought fears of landslips in the Hipaua Thermal Area near Turangi. The small settlement of Waihi Village at the southwest of Lake Taupo was this afternoon evacuated due to the fears.

MetService said rains were expected to continue in the North Island, until tomorrow in some areas.

Clear and sunny weather was expected on Wednesday but further rain was forecast for later this week.

"Overall, the weather for the coming week is looking unsettled," Mr McDavitt said.

"People who are planning for the outdoors will need to check the weather forecast beforehand."

- NZPA