Pick up your charter boat from Bayswater Marina at midday Enjoy a leisurely sail down the Harbour, taking in the local scenery, to Islington Bay on Rangitoto Island, approx 8 nm. This anchorage provides the perfect spot for the first night of your cruise giving you the chance to get to know your vessel before venturing further a field next day. Islington Bay or better known to the locals as "Drunks Bay" offers good shelter and you are assured a good night’s sleep.
Sail to Kawau Island, stop at Tiritiri Matangi Island for walk and/or swim.
Kawau Island to Port Fitzroy, Great Barrier Island Up with the sparrows this morning and all hands on deck for the 30 mile cruise across the Gulf to Great Barrier Island. This is New Zealand's largest offshore Island covering some 28,000 ha. Innumerable activities await you at the Island including diving, fishing, snorkelling, walking and tramping, or just enjoy some "time-out". There are three harbours to visit on the Island, all providing good sheltered anchorages in numerous bays, although on this occasion Port Fitzroy is the main port of call and offers sheltered anchorage in all conditions. It is nearly landlocked by Kaikoura Island. The scenery will enthral you as you near the Island and, as you enter into the harbour, a wonderful waterland will open up to you.
Port Fitzroy: fishing, diving, swimming, walks etc After a good night’s sleep you are ready to venture ashore and stretch the legs. Visit the local shop for an ice cream and pick up some information on the Island’s walks. The Department of Conservation administers much of the forestland covering the Island and has developed many walks in the area. Spend part of the day exploring the inner waterways and anchorages. Stop over at Smokehouse Bay. Here you can get down to some real pioneering. Light the fire, heat the water, fill the old bath and enjoy a soak; smoke the fish or do the washing!! A great place to meet fellow cruisers and exchange stories.
Port Fitzroy: Today is the day that you ensure your anchor is well dug in for you are in for some exercise with a visit to one of the famous Kauri Dams on the Island. Venture around to Kaiarara Bay and find a spot to anchor. You will find a good entry to the walk, which will take approx 2 hours return, at the head of the Bay. This area was the site of extensive timber milling in the early 1920's. The track continues to the top of Mount Hobson with extensive views over the Island. Spoil yourselves tonight after such gruelling exercise, and book in for a meal at the guesthouse above the jetty just inside the Bay.
Great Barrier Island to Whangarei Heads About 40 miles
Whangarei Heads – Tutukaka A sail of about 20 miles takes you round Bream Head and on to Tutukaka, where there is a marina with showers, laundry facilities and restaurants.
Tutukaka – Mimiwhangata About 15 miles and you can explore some bays on the way if there is no easterly swell.
Mimiwhangata – Whangaruru About 4 miles across to this very sheltered harbour.
Whangaruru – Whangamumu About 10 miles to a lovely enclosed bay with an old whaling station to explore.
Whangamumu – Deep Water Cove Just a short trip today into the Bay of Islands. As you round Cape Brett and the famous "Hole in the Rock" a whole new cruising wonderland awaits you.
Bay of Islands Here there are many places to visit. A few options include Urupukapuka Island, Roberton Island, Moturua Island, Te Puna inlet, up the river to Kerikeri, or the townships of Russell, Waitangi, Opua and Paihia. Alternatively you could explore further north to the Cavalli Islands and Whangaroa.
Bay of Islands
Bay of Islands
Return your yacht to Opua Marina by 1200.