Hauraki Gulf Yacht Charter Guide

Sailing the Hauraki Gulf presents you with some of the best sailing conditions to be found anywhere, and a huge array of islands. with sheltered anchorages and deserted beaches to explore. From your base in Auckland, the South Pacific's largest city, you have this fantastic sailing playground right on yours doorstep. This is our home patch, where we all sailed from an early age. Decades later, we still haven't seen it all. Let us introduce you to our wonderful world of sailing Kiwi-style.

About Yacht Charters in the Hauraki Gulf

With over 200 sheltered anchorages on the Hauraki Gulf's inner Islands alone, you can select 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 with the nearest sailing attractions so close to downtown Auckland, the Gulf is still ideal for short itineraries that provide diverse sailboat experiences. 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 plus its many miles of beautiful mainland coastline. A couple of hours after landing at Auckland International Airport you can be aboard your yacht, two hours of sailing later in the midst of inner-Gulf islands. Here's a summary of the cornerstones destinations that underlie the Hauraki Gulf sailing experience.

Waiheke Island

Twelve miles east of Auckland and the largest inner island, Waiheke is a mixture of modern suburban development and farmland. It's a convenient stop to restock supplies towards the beginning or end of your charter, and there are some great restaurants in which to dine ashore. Waiheke has gained a reputation as a great wine-producing region, and as a haven for artisans who can supply you with a special souvenir or gift.

The anchorages at the western end are busy as they service the developed part of the island. A further 20 km on at the eastern end of Waiheke and nearby Ponui Island there is space aplenty. These sailing waters are fringed by sandy beaches and rolling country. with beautiful coves to explore and safe bays to overnight in any conditions. .

Conveniently located a further 12 miles east and 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 European New Zealand. Te Kouma is a large natural landlocked harbour bounded by steep, wild and forest-covered mountains. This is a lovely coastline much favoured by nature enthusiasts and visiting sailors.

Kawau Island

Cruise 30 miles north of Auckland to Kawau Island and spectacular Bon Accord Harbour. Once a major source of manganese and copper, Kawau and now part of the Hauraki Gulf Maritime Park, Kawau's east coast is rugged and inhospitable. That's in  stark contrast to the western side, where sheltered coves and inlets make Kawau a favourite stopover for cruising yachtsmen.

On Kawau 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 gardens, island retreat of one of NZ's most famous men of history, If feeling energetic, take a brisk stroll over the pine-forested ridges or an easy walk through the bush that surrounds Mansion House Bay.

Great Barrier Island

On the outer extremity of the Hauraki Gulf lies Great Barrier Island some 30 miles east of Kawau Island and 50 miles from Auckland. The 'Barrier' is a favourite yacht charter destination in itself, and offers some of the best diving and fishing in New Zealand. You can easily spend a week around Great Barrier  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 locations at which to renew supplies, and there are plentiful sheltered anchorages for staying the night.


New Zealand's climate is temperate. The best time to take a boating holiday in New Zealand is during the warmer, drier months of November to 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 around two metres.

Our Charter Services

At Sail Connections we make planning your bareboat or crewed yacht charter easy and enjoyable. Our team members have sailed in New Zealand most of our lives, and we would be delighted to share with you our favourite anchorages, places to go and things to do.

We can advise on getting around New Zealand and accommodation options before and after your charter, enabling you to make the best possible use of your time in this premier travel destination, including connections to/from your charter boat.

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
Bavaria 38
Bavaria 38 - 38' (11.6m) 6 Guests

Enquire about the Hauraki Gulf

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