Holidaymakers returning home today after their Christmas/New Year break are in for a hot car ride home - unless they're travelling through the Bay of Plenty.
The North Island will have mostly clear skies with temperatures in the low to mid-20s today, and Auckland can look forward to a gradually warming week.
The City of Sails is forecast to be 23C today and Monday and will reach 25C and 26C across Tuesday to Friday this week.
However, MetService forecaster Aidan Pyselman said those travelling in or out of the Bay of Plenty and the East Coast today should prepare for heavy showers in the afternoon.
"[There's] the potential of heavy showers and thunderstorms during the afternoon in Gisborne, parts of Bay of Plenty," Pyselman said.
"Otherwise it's looking reasonably settled, but there'll be some pretty heavy showers over that northeast section of the North Island.
"This time of year things [storms] sort of get going generally around lunchtime and continue on into the afternoon and evening."
For the week ahead, Pyselman says most of the North Island is "looking pretty settled right through".
Whangārei will have a high of 26C and a few showers today but sunny and mid-20C forecast the rest of the week.
Hamilton will have a high of 25C today and be fine except for morning fog. It is forecast for 27C from Tuesday to Friday this week.
Tauranga will have a high of 26C today with frequent showers. However, for the rest of the week it will remain fine and temperatures will be in the mid-20s.
Wellington will be 21C today but fine. The capital will remain either 21C or 22C for the rest of the week, and will avoid rain for the most part.
Christchurch will have a high of 23C today with a bit of drizzle in the morning that will clear. A bit of rain tomorrow will clear for warm and fine conditions to end the week.