Full Day Island Explorer

Full Day Island Explorer (9am – 6pm)

Snorkel – Kayak – Paddle Board – Wildlife – Sightseeing

For the BEST Snorkeling Adventure Boat Cruise to the most remote & pristine off-shore islands of Aucklands’ Hauraki Gulf.


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How about combining an evening kiwi tour with www.kiwinesstours.co.nz?

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This 9 hour boat trip includes all our water-based activities, including snorkeling, kayaking & paddle boarding at the most incredible off-shore locations.

Most of the islands are unihabited nature reserves, with great bird & marine life, crystal clear waters, and stunning scenery.

The island destination of the day will be determined by where the best conditions are on that particular day, but will be either:      Great Barrier Island, the Hen & Chicken Islands, or the Mokohinau Islands.

Travel time to each of these islands is the same, approximately 2 hours, during which time there are great opportunities for dolphin & whale spotting, sea birds, and fantastic views of the outer Hauraki Gulf. Once we arrive at the islands we take you to the best locations for snorkeling, kayaking & paddle boarding, surrounded by incredible scenery.

Note: The Full Day Island Explorer is only available to the public during the summer season, October 1st – April 30th. However private charters are welcome at any time of year.

Island Explorer Destinations

Hen & Chicken Islands

Hen & Chicken Islands

Taranga Island & Marotere Islands -five islands that have been a protected nature reserve & wildlife refuge for more than 60 years!

  • Renowned for its birdlife, many species of which are extinct on the mainland.
  • Surrounded by rocky reefs and are known for excellent diving & snorkeling.
  • Great opportunities for dolphin sightings.
Mokohinau Islands

Mokohinau Islands

A small group of remote islands lying furthest from the mainland. The surrounding sea has crystal clear waters teeming with sea life.

  • All but one of the islands are a nature reserve, but you can land on Burgess Island for a walk up to the lighthouse and lunch admiring the 360-degree panoramic views!.
  • One of the best snorkel locations in NZ!
  • A must for the intrepid traveler!
Great Barrier Island:

Great Barrier Island:

Consisting of numerous inlets and harbours, this large island is inhabited by approximately 1000 people, with a strong emphasis on sustainable living, and reflects what life was like in New Zealand decades ago.

  • Excellent diving & snorkeling with spectacular scenery!
  • 2 day / overnight packages available including boat or island accommodation.
  • The worlds’ newest ‘Night-Sky Sanctuary’ with amazing star-gazing!

What’s Included

  • Boat trip to / from either of the island destinations listed
  • Full use of snorkel gear, wetsuits, kayaks & paddle boards
  • At least 2-3 different snorkeling spots on the day
  • Dolphin / whale / seal sightings are common, excellent underwater life including sting ray & eagle ray, & many species of fish & sea birds
  • A nutricious homemade lunch is provided as well as tea, coffee, & hot chocolate

*Only available during the summer season. We are still available for private charters to these destinations during winter.

Departure Times

Summer Season Only (Oct. 1st – April 30th)   9am – 6pm

All trips depart from:

Sandspit Public Wharf, Sandspit Rd, Warkworth.


  • Adults NZD$225
  • Children (5-15yrs) NZD$125
  • Family (2 Adults / 2 Children) NZD$599

*This activity is NOT suitable for children under 5 years of age

Private Charter: Summer NZD$1575 / Winter Season NZD$1295   (up to 12 passengers, catering not included)  

Scuba Diving Charters: Summer NZD$1500 / Winter NZD$1250   (up to 8 divers, equipment / catering not included)

Overnight / Multi-Day Trips: from NZD$2500 (2 days / 1 night)          Sleeps up to 6 passengers plus skipper.

Please inquire about tailored personal trips to the destination & duration of your choice.                                                                                      We can also help to arrange car hire & island accomodation on Great Barrier Island if you prefer not to sleep on the boat.

*Minimum of 4 passengers required for public trips.

View our Cancellation Policy on our Book Now page

Ready to book your Gulf Eco Adventure?


another happy Gulf Eco Adventurer

What an amazing day! The islands are beautiful and you can tell Kurt the host is very knowledgeable and passionate about the area & wildlife. The boat was also clean and new, and was fully equipped with everything you needed to snorkel, kayak and paddle board with wet suits. Lunch was great, with some especially delicious homemade muffins and hot drinks. And the marine life was amazing, we saw lots of fish, a sting ray, a school of squid and a pod of dolphins who stayed around to play with us for an hour!


May 2017


ECO WARRIOR is an 11m aluminium launch fully surveyed to take up to 12 passengers. Capable of cruising at 20-24 knots, and with a maximum speed of 32 knots, she will get you out to great dive spots & remote islands quickly & comfortably.


Your Skipper

Kurt Salmond, together with wife Clair and kids Jesse & Mikayla, started Gulf Eco Adventures in 2016, to share our love of the outer Hauraki Gulf, and to help educate people on sustainable living and environmental awareness.

Kurt is a fully qualified skipper with Maritime New Zealand, and holds a current first aid certificate. He is also a volunteer with the local Coastguard unit.

Our Location

Our departure is from Sandspit Public Wharf, at the end of Sandspit Road, Warkworth. It is just a 50 minute drive north of Auckland city. Turn off SH1 at Warkworth and follow the signs to Sandspit.

There is a public carpark at the wharf, with info centre, cafe & public toilets. For travellers, Sandspit Holiday Park is just across the road, or there are numerous well-priced b&b accommodation locally.

How do we get there?

www.intercity.co.nz offer a daily return bus service from Auckland city or the airport to Warkworth town. We provide FREE transfers between Warkworth & Sandspit, just let us know when you book.

For larger groups and private charters, we can help to arrange a private shuttle bus / coach to get you to / from Sandspit.





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– Individual / Group / Corporate & Private Bookings Accepted –

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