The boat had about 20 more people on board than it should have in my opinion. It was raining when we left and there was not enough space that was covered for everyone to get out of the rain. They offered to sell us cheap plastic ponchos for $1 a piece, as if we hadn't already paid enough for this crappy tour. The food was just alright, but they had the buffet set up below deck in space that was almost pitch black dark until finally someone figured they ought to turn some lights on. The really didn't go anywhere that one would want to see that you couldn't see from shore. Overall, it was a waste of money and I couldn't wait for it to be over.
Paihia or Russell, Bay of Islands, New Zealand
Although the weather wasn't the best, it rained for part of the trip, this was a very good tour. There was food and drink on board that you had to pay for. It was a little crowded of course; they try to fill the boat up completely but we were one of the first on board so we got some great seats. The scenery was great although the fog made it impossible to see the lighthouse. The ride through the hole in the rock(twice) was excellent. I didn't actually think the boat would fit but it did easily. On the way back we stopped at an island where they let us off for about an hour. There wasn't much to do that you could do in an hour. The tour company of course had a tent and a snack bar setup to sell you food and drink. On the boat, we shall a couple of pods of dolphins and that was great. Overall, I'm glad we took this tour.
Wellington, New Zealand
If you are a LOTR fan, then this is the tour for you. Although the weather didn't cooperate, it rained, they really recreated some of the scenery from the movies. We actually caravanned with another group so we had 2 tour guides for the day and they were very knowledgeable about the movies and the country. We went to several different sites and they showed up pictures from the movies and explained how they fit into the place where we were. There was a stop under covered shelter at one of the sites where we had hot drinks and cookies. The cookies were good for dunking but the hot chocolate that I had wasn't very good. It could have used more cocoa mix. Even though it was very windy and rainy at times, it was a very enjoyable tour.
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