Sea-kayak the north

Paddle through time

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Traces of human history line the beaches, bays and hills of New Zealand’s far north.

This is a gentle landscape of rolling hills, rocky coves, sandy beaches and natural harbours; where the warm, sub-tropical climate encourages life to be lived at a leisurely pace.

Travel in your own private group on an 8-day journey of discovery. Sea-kayaking trips most days will take you down slow-moving rivers out onto tidal estuaries and across the open ocean to small islands.

Our specialist guides will lead you to historic sites, essential parts of the Aotearoa story. You’ll pull your kayaks up on the very same beaches where the original Polynesian explorers landed their canoes, gathered their food, established their villages and built their fortifications.

You’ll visit a former whaling station and trading-post, and learn about the early days of European settlement. You’ll stay in peaceful, picturesque towns that were once among New Zealand’s busiest hubs of commerce.

Sea-kayak the North road-trips get you to the unmissable locations of Cape Reinga, 90-Mile Beach, the Bay of Islands and the Poor Knights Islands. In addition you’ll visit lesser-known but equally-special gems like Karekare Peninsula, Whangaroa Harbour and the Cavalli Islands.

These are trips designed for private groups. As long as there are at least six of you traveling together we can make it happen. No experience is necessary. Our guides will teach everyone the necessary kayaking skills and will carefully manage everyone's safety on and off the water. We'll provide single and double ‘sit-inside’ sea-kayaks complete with spray-skirts, paddle-jackets, pfd's and dry-bags.

Non-paddlers are welcome and will be able to enjoy hikes and other activities while the kayakers are on the water. If weather or marine conditions prevent a kayak trip from happening the guides will be ready with alternative plans such as hikes, bike-rides and beach picnics.

More about the accommodation:

Each night you’ll be accommodated in spacious vacation apartments, either 2-bedroom or 3-bedroom units, all with their own private bathrooms. We can also arrange 1-bedroom units for a slight increase in price. Each apartment has its own well-equipped kitchen which means you’ll be able to prepare your own meals if you wish. Laundry facilities are available at all the accommodations.

For the first three nights of the tour we’ll stay on the waterfront in the sleepy far north village of Mangonui.

We'll move on to the small, historic town of Russell in the picturesque Bay of Islands for nights 4 & 5.

Nights 6 & 7 are in Tutukaka, in a collection of motels spectacularly situated high upon a promontory with panoramic ocean views.


Click to see Tamarillo's deal on trips for six

'Trips for Six'

Discounts for groups

Get a group of six or more together and reduce everyone’s price.

How it works: Instead of the regular per person price, we’ll give you a special per group price.
As the group's coordinator its up to you to decide how to split the 'Trips for Six' price. You might:

  • surprise your friends and family by paying for everyone.
  • divide the amount equally among all participants.
  • get the rest of the group to share the cost so you travel for free.

Who is it for? Extended families, groups of friends, hiking & kayaking clubs, corporate groups, etc.

'Trips for Six' discounts are available only for bookings made directly with
Tamarillo Active Travel. Contact us to learn more.

Other packages

Photo credits. Main image: Adventure HQ. Right-side top, Ben Crawford. Sea-kayak the South, Ian Trafford. Sea-kayak the North, Scott Venning. Southern Frontier, Jocelyn Carlin.