Islands of the Hauraki Gulf, New Zealand / 300 Nm / 24 Mar – 27 Apr 2021 / 14 Days / Cat 3 Expedition
You can fly directly into Auckland on or before the 24th of March 2021. When you arrive we’ll familiarise you with the yacht systems and safety equipment and you will join us for a crew dinner ashore. Our crew will officially assemble on the 25th at the designated marina berth in Auckland and we will aim to depart on the 26th of April 2021 and leave the marina, and head for our first of many island anchorages. You are welcome to stay onboard from the date you arrive, but if you plan to arrive prior to 24th March, you may need to arrange accommodation ashore.
The goal is to circumnavigate the Hauraki Gulf, stopping at numerous scenic bays, anchorages and islands en-route, while managing around the weather to ensure a comfortable and safe expedition. This may include waiting for bad weather to pass while safely anchored or moored in a sheltered bay, inner sound, harbour or anchorage.
The coastlines you will encounter include some of the most stunning maritime scenery in New Zealand. The voyage starts with departing Auckland Harbour and sailing in an anti-clockwise direction to Rangitoto Island, Motuhie Island and Waiheke Island for a winery luncheon, then east to Te Kouma and north to Port Jackson at the northern end of the Coromandel Penninsula, then south to Whitianga, east to Great Mercury Island, before heading north again to the wild coast of Great Barrier Island, 40nm NE of Auckland, before heading onto the isolated Mokohinau Islands for some great fishing.
Then we’ll sail south again toward Little Barrier Island and then to Goat Island marine reserve where the snorkelling is fantastic. Next stop is Bon Accord Harbour at Kawau Island to visit Mansion House, the former home of New Zealand’s Governor. We’ll visit the large shipwreck still visible above sea level on the treacherous shores of Moturekareka Island before heading to Tiritiri Matangi Island, home of the lighthouse at the northern end of Auckland’s shipping channel entrance and built out of large steel rings forged in London in 1864, then shipped to New Zealand for assembly on the island’s clifftop. After departing Tiri, we’ll go in search of the elusive Elephant Island, with a rocky bay so small there’s only room for 3-4 vessels, before heading back toward Auckland on the 7th of April to complete our 300nm adventure.