Hauraki Gulf Yacht Charter Guide

Sailing the Hauraki Gulf offers more than 1,500 square nautical miles of cruising, and the chance to explore a huge array of islands with sheltered anchorages and deserted beaches. Auckland is a bustling South Pacific city with a cosmopolitan lifestyle, and this fantastic sailing playground is right on the city's doorstep. This is my home patch. We are an international team here at Sail Connections but I was sailing these waters as a toddler. Fifty years later I haven't seen it all, and it still leaves me feeling I can't get enough. Let me introduce you to my world. Ask for Robert.

About Yacht Charters in the Hauraki Gulf

With over 200 sheltered anchorages on the inner Islands alone, you could choose to visit a different stopover every weekend for a year and not return to the same bay.  Distances between islands and anchorages are generally greater than in the Bay of Islands, but the Gulf is still suiatbale for short itineraries that provide for a diverse sailboat experience. A longer stay is always possible if you want to explore more of this very special part of the world.

In total, the Hauraki Gulf contains some 76 islands and miles of beautiful mainland coastline as well. Within 30 minutes of landing at Auckland International Airport, you can be aboard your yacht, and two hours later in the midst of the inner Gulf islands. The following destinations are cornerstones of Hauraki Gulf sailing vacations.

Waiheke Island

Twelve miles east of Auckland and largest of the inner islands, Waiheke is a mixture of modern development and rural farmland. It's a convenient stop to replenish supplies and there are some great restaurants if you wish to dine ashore.  There are country walks, boutique vineyards that beckon you to relax and sample their wines, and for the enthusiasts a range of local crafts, potting, leatherwork, weaving and art. The anchorages  at the southern end of Waiheke and nearby Ponui Island are fringed by sandy beaches and rolling country. There are lots of beautiful coves to explore and a choice of anchorages to shelter in all weathers.

Coromandel Coast

Another twelve miles eastwards across the Firth of Thames lies the historic Coromandel Coast and township, a place with a colourful past that celebrates its gold rush history and place in early new Zealand. Te Kouma is a large natural landlocked harbour, bounded by steep, wild and orest-covered mountains. This is a lovely coastline much favoured by nature enthusiasts and visiting yachtsmen.

Great Barrier Island

Great Barrier Island is 50 miles northeast of Auckland, on the outer extremities of the Hauraki Gulf. The 'Barrier' is a favourite yacht charter destination in itself, and offers some of the best diving and fishing in New Zealand. You could easily spend a week here exploring the maze of inlets and hidden deep-water harbours.

A hot thermal spring, rare birds, ivory-coloured beaches, outstandingly scenic bush walks and superb seafood are among Great Barrier's other attractions. You will find several good locations where you can renew your supplies, and find a sheltered anchorage for the night.

Kawau Island

Cruise 26 miles north of Auckland to Kawau Island and the spectacular Bon Accord Harbour. Once a major source of manganese and copper, Kawau later became the island retreat of Governor Sir George Grey. Part of the Hauraki Gulf Maritime Park, its east coast is rugged and inhospitable, in contrast to the western side where sheltered coves and inlets make Kawau a favourite stopover for cruising yachtsmen. You can be in a different bay for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and in between enjoy a great day of fishing and sailing. Ashore, visit the historic Mansion House and picnic in the gardens with their colourful resident peacocks. If feeling energetic, take a brisk stroll over the pine-forested ridges. There are plenty of walks to chose from, buth short and long. 


New Zealand's climate is temperate. The best time to take a yacht charter in New Zealand is between the warmer, drier months of November and April. The prevailing winds are from the westerly quadrant, south-west through north-west Beaufort 1- 4 between November and April. There is a tidal range of two metres.

Our Charter Services

SAIL CONNECTIONS will make planning your yacht charter easy and enjoyable. Our Yacht  Charter Team members have personally sailed in New Zealand many times over the years, and we are well equipped to tell you about our favourite anchorages, special places to go and interesting things to do.

Our Travel Department can advise you on getting around New Zealand, and accommodation options before and after your charter, to ensure the best travel connections to meet your charter yacht.

Enquire Now - Click Here   or view our bareboats and crewed yachts.

The Sail Connections Guarantee

One contact - every option - advice you can trust.

  • Matching any competitive offer 
  • Sourcing boats with discounts available
  • Personalising our proposal just for you
  • Qualifying the operator as well as the boat
  • Advising without bias based on 25+ years of experience

We will match any discount website offer on charter boat price, and still provide our customary high level of service. We do more than just book yachts!

Read our free charter guide for all you need to know about planning your sailing holiday.

Yachts in the Hauraki Gulf

Beneteau 57
Beneteau 57 - 61' (18.6m) 8 Guests
Bavaria 46
Bavaria 46 - 46' (14m) 8 Guests
Oceanis 40
Oceanis 40 - 40' (12.2m) 6 Guests
Bavaria 38
Bavaria 38 - 38' (11.6m) 6 Guests

Enquire about the Hauraki Gulf

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