Sail rugged, uncharted territories in New Zealand, offering abundant activities, excellent sailing conditions and stunning scenery. World-class skiing and surfing, fascinating Maori culture and captivating wildlife make New Zealand one of the top adventure charter destinations in the world.

Go for the fjords and snow-capped mountains in winter, and the sprawling vineyards and stunning beaches in the summer. Your itinerary could include modern cities like Auckland on the North Island, or the less visited South Island, wild and rugged, and boasting the exceptional Marlborough Wine Country.

You’ll be spoilt for choice in New Zealand; there are thousands of kilometres of coastline to explore, from the most northerly point of Cape Reinga to Bluff on the southernmost point of the South Island.

Wander off the beaten path in the most northerly part of New Zealand that’s accessible to visitors, Cape Reinga. For the Maori, this sacred site is the gateway to the underworld, where the spirits of the deceased leap into the ocean to return to their ancestral home. Explore one of the walking trails wending along the coast, taking in dramatic vistas and the sound of crashing waves.

Visit the famous Hole in the Rock on Motukokako Island. According to Maori legend, local warriors used to paddle through the Hole in the Rock in their canoes before departing for battle. While cruising or sailing in the Bay of Islands, keep your eyes peeled for common and bottlenose dolphins and whales. 

Visit sheltered coves, remote islands and peaceful bays as well as the marine reserves of the Bay of Islands, Hauraki Gulf, and the Marlborough Sounds. Thrill seekers will love the Bay of Islands, a series of more than 140 islands offering diving, kayaking, wildlife and Waitangi Treaty Grounds, while Marlborough Sounds is a sailing paradise in a region famed for top-notch wine and seafood.

You can’t go wrong with a visit to The Shire i.e. the magical Hobbiton movie set in the Waikato region of New Zealand. Tours are two hours long, and private tours are available (book in advance). Fans of The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies will be thrilled to see the famous filming locations, learn fascinating details about the films, and, at the end of the tour, enjoy a delicious banquet as part of the Evening Banquet tour.

A historic port town in the south of New Zealand, Bluff has a network of walking trails and mountain biking tracks. Admire the abundant native birdlife and flora and try the famous Bluff oysters. From Bluff you can charter to the untamed Stewart Island, most of which is a national park where you can see wild kiwi birds! 

New Zealand is a sailor’s paradise, with state-of-the-art marinas where your private charter yacht can comfortably fit, and a plethora of remote beaches to explore, plenty of which are safe for children to paddle and play. To get close to nature, go canoeing or kayaking in the Bay of Islands or Okiwi Bay, a quiet corner of the Marlborough Sounds.

Best time to go

We’d recommend visiting in summer or autumn when the temperatures are warmer, although if you’re planning on skiing you’ll want to go in New Zealand’s winter season.

Insider tip

New Zealand is one adventure charter that is great for kids. A lovely option is to take them to see the waterfalls, rainforests and natural life (including seal colonies, penguins and dolphins) of Milford Sound, a fiord in the southwest of New Zealand’s South Island.