The resort town of Paihia services the villages and islands of the Bay of Islands. Boasting the area’s best accommodation and restaurants, Paihia Harbour is the ideal place to base yourself while you explore this lovely part of New Zealand.  ... 

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carol w

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
February 2017

Well organised. Informative driver - without information overload
Loved the short stop to see the kauri trees
Long day - although there are several stops, do bring extra drinks with you.

Doing what: Cape Reinga and 90 Mile Beach Tour from Bay of Islands

Todd B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
February 2017

Like anything in New Zealand, how much you will enjoy this tour will be entirely dependent on the weather. We were lucky with the weather and got to go through the hole in the rock. It was a bit rough and can imagine it being hard on rough days. It was a little chilly too but this would have been awesome on a fine, calm summers day.

Doing what: Half-Day Bay of Islands Discovery Tour from Paihia

Ksjscreen United States of ... 

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
February 2017

I thought 11 hours would be brutal, but it flew by. We had lousy weather and poor visibility, but Jackie made it so fun. The history and stories were great. Nice group we went with. 2 top highlights were riding on 90 mile beach and sand surfing. All in all it was a great trip.

Doing what: Cape Reinga and 90 Mile Beach Tour from Bay of Islands

Carol

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
February 2017

Great trip . Plenty to see love those dolphins. Friendly crew. Excellent value.

Doing what: Best of the Bay Supercruise: Original Cream Trip

anne United Kingdom

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
February 2017

The Bay of Islands is a beautiful part of New Zealand and the half day discovery boat tour we had booked did not disappoint. We were taken through and around a large number of the islands and also out to the Hole in the Rock and were also joined by a pod of dolphins who swam close to the boat, which was lovely as they are a pleasure to watch. A BBQ lunch was also included in the tour and we got off the boat on the island of Urupukapuka and enjoyed a very good meal in idyllic surroundings. We then had time to walk up to the top of one of the hills on the island and had a panoramic view of the islands. We would thoroughly recommend this trip to anyone visiting the Bay of Islands.

Doing what: Half-Day Bay of Islands Discovery Tour from Paihia

Karl P

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
February 2017

Great day out sailing around the Bay of Islands, Friendly crew, great food we would recommend this trip to anyone

Doing what: Bay of Islands Tall Ship Sailing on 'R. Tucker Thompson' Including BBQ Lunch

David T

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
February 2017

Wonderful day touring the islands. The boat crew were excellent

Doing what: Best of the Bay Supercruise: Original Cream Trip

Mrs S

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
February 2017

The weather on the day made this tour all the more enjoyable...the boat and staff were outstanding with a great itinerary, cliffs, cave and beach landing for a swim or a walk up a peak for spectacular scenery. The crew were formative, casual, respectful and friendly...always a good recipe for a great day out.

Doing what: Island Cliffs and Caves Adventure Tour

RAJIV H

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
February 2017

Beautiful Scenery in a modern boat - excellent commentary. Very happy.

Doing what: Island Cliffs and Caves Adventure Tour

Joseph F

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
February 2017

Ben our tour guide was great, really got us all to know each other and we all had a lot of fun. The kayaking and waterfalls are great Would highly recommend

Doing what: Bay Of Islands Nature Cruise And Kayaking Adventure

Brenda G

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2017

Excellent tour from start to finish. Commentry and the guide were superb and we saw plenty of dolphins and went throug the Hole in the Rock. The stop off at Otehi Bay ideal.

Doing what: Bay of Islands Cape Brett 'Hole in the Rock' Cruise

mitchell s

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2017

Fantastic cruise out to the hole in the rock!

Doing what: Best of the Bay Supercruise: Original Cream Trip

Craig E Australia

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2017

We enjoyed a comfortable catamaran trip out to the Hole in the Rock which was awesome to go through. On our way to the rock and on our way back to Paihia we were fortunate to see quite a few dolphins, which was amazing. We also got to stop off at Urupukapuka Island where we decided to take the short climb to the top of the hill for beautiful views of the Bay of Islands. Was a great overall experience!!

Doing what: Bay of Islands Cape Brett 'Hole in the Rock' Cruise

Samuel M

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2017

Our guide Slava was very informative and tailored the tour to our interests. The highlight was the glow worm cave- a must see!

Doing what: Private Shore Excursion: Full-Day Bay of Islands Tour

Andrew k P

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2017

Book it now, you will have a truly wonderful day to treasure. Brilliant friendly crew, making all ship mates feel at ease.
At 56 it was great to have the opportunity and encouragement to climb the rigging and even take the helm of this great ship.
Ask the crew about the boats history documented in two books.
Lunch was great too.
Just BRILLIANT

Doing what: Bay of Islands Tall Ship Sailing on 'R. Tucker Thompson' Including BBQ Lunch

Erica D

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2017

A fantastic day for the entire family, stunning scenery and fun activities too

Doing what: Best of the Bay Supercruise: Original Cream Trip

Sally A

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2017

Really great afternoon, lovely crew and a change to help them a little too.

Doing what: Afternoon Bay of Islands Tall Ship Sailing Experience

chrispy Australia

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2017

Fantastic day out with a small group of people. Air conditioned mini bus and fantastic lovely informative guide. Always was smiling and judged time well at all the destinations. Some people ran late to join group but not their fault and we were able to spend a reasonable amount of time at sights. Kemp House, Haruru Waterfall, Makana Chocolates, Waimate Mission Station, and the Hundertwasser Toilets. I loved not waiting for a large crowd to get back on bus before moving onto next sight to see. Picked up and dropped off direct from port where tenders from ship arrived. I recommend this tour.

Doing what: Shore Excursion: Small-Group Bay of Islands Highlights Tour

Lesley C

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2017

We arrived in Waitangi on a cruise ship and then caught a shuttle bus to the small town of Paihia, where we boarded the boat for a tour of the bay. It was a lovely day and the view across the bay to all the islands was stunning. We first of all stopped at another seaside village called Russell Kororareka before sailing out to the Hole in the Rock on the island of Motukokako. The female skipper and crew were very informative and very professional. She very skillfully sailed through the Hole as the boat narrowly passed through, particularly with the swell of the ocean. Excellent trip, well worth doing, highly recommend this tour.
On the way back we stopped off at Otehei Bay on the island of Urupukapuka and walked up to a high point with amazing views in all directions across the Bay of Islands. We arrived back in Paihia at 1pm and after a brief walk round the town we caught the bus and tender back to the ship. It was a very enjoyable day and well worth doing the boat trip.

Doing what: Bay of Islands Cape Brett 'Hole in the Rock' Cruise

Angela L

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2017

I went on this trip with 4 friends and we all had a great time! the guides seemed excited to show us around and were willing to answer questions and help us out. The area is also lovely.

Doing what: Bay Of Islands Nature Cruise And Kayaking Adventure

Bernadette C

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2017

Our family thoroughly enjoyed this action packed holiday and especially recommend it to those who have a limited time to see highlights of the North Island. We were so impressed by the exquisite scenery, the kindness of the countrys people and the richness of the Maori culture. Our only issue with the 5-day tour was that we would have preferred more detail about our itinerary and how to coordinate with the tour operators. Although Viator organised the bus transportation, hotel accommodations, and individual tours, we were left to coordinate when/where for pickups etc. for tours and transportation to the next locations.

Doing what: 5-Day Bay of Islands, Rotorua, Waitomo Caves and Hobbiton Movie Set Tour from Auckland

Alan R

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2017

An amazing experience. It's costly, sure, but well worth it. The area is beautiful and to get a chance to see it from above is too good to miss. The pilot provided an interesting commentary on the history and landmarks there and back to the hole in the rock, and even pointed out a huge shoal of fish for us. There are plenty of photo opportunities so make sure your batteries are charged up- you won't want to miss a moment of this magical trip.

Doing what: Bay of Islands and Hole in the Rock Scenic Helicopter Tour

Reno N

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
January 2017

Had an amazing sail out in the Bay of Islands. The rope swing off the side was fantastic. It was great to be supporting educational opportunities for local kids and to have a blast doing it. Our crew was very knowledgeable and friendly. The boat is designed to sail with a very small crew of 4 or 5 people, so while there were opportunities for the 50 odd passengers to help sail the Tucker if they wanted to, it was first-come first-serve and I didn't get a chance to participate as much as I was hoping to. That didn't matter though, because we spent a lot of time out on the bowsprit and up in the rigging just hanging out. Great time from start to finish!

Doing what: Bay of Islands Tall Ship Sailing on 'R. Tucker Thompson' Including BBQ Lunch

sirius

5 star rating: Highly Recommended
December 2016

We were concerned with where to catch this ferry after getting off the cruise ship but needn't have worried. The cruise ship shuttled us right into town and the Ferry terminal at Paihia. The ferry then went to Russell so either port, we would have been fine.

The highlight of the day was the encounter with the dolphins on the way out to the hole in the rock. The skipper allowed our interaction with dolphins to last for a good 30 minutes and did a good job of not interfering with the dolphins or the other tours, especially the ones that were swimming with the dolphins. There were whales around with the skipper saying he'd likely find them within 30 mins but we didn't have time to search for them, and didn't see them this trip.

The scenery is spectacular, like most other places in NZ we found and we were easily able to get under the rock, which with the lighthouse backdrop, was very picturesque. The were very large schools of fish just out from the hole in the rock but we didn't have time to go out and experience them unfortunately.

The island stop and lunch where great although we feared having lunch and going to the top of the hill for the majestic views was a bit risky as we couldn't afford to miss the ferry and hence our cruise back to Sydney later that afternoon.

So the only thing would be if it could be extended maybe another 30-60 mins to allow more time to do more I guess - next time.

And as a note, everyone scrambles for seats at the top of the boat but IMO, the lower floor seats at the back of the boat are best. Many people came down from the top as too windy once we got going although the top is great when we do pass through the hole of course.

Doing what: Half-Day Bay of Islands Discovery Tour from Paihia

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