Auckland kayak trip: Whenuapai to Riverhead pub paddle

Riverhead Pub paddle

Riverhead pub paddle is one of those magical kayak trips where you can just sit  in your kayak and let the tide take you to the pub and back!

This is second in a series of tide assisted social paddles around Auckland for the laid back evening paddler who wants an easy paddle to a waterside pub / restaurent around Auckland.

Launch point: Whenuapai

Eight of us from Auckland Yakity Yak Club launched from Waimarie Rd boat ramp, Whenuapai.

Riverhead Pub paddle
Whenuapai launch point

High Resolution Video of the trip to Riverhead pub paddle

The video was shot with the just launched Canon EOS 70D and the newly released GoPro Hero 3+ without any post processing on colour / exposure / balance. It just goes down to show how advanced the new senors are at working at low light even in the hand of amateur.

The trip

We started off at 6:00PM with nine paddlers: MikaelaChrisJanet, Luke, Olga, Sandra & Christine, myself and Shaun.

The Pub



NZ kayak trip: Bay of Islands Paddle – Urupukapuka and Cape Brett Hole in the Rock

Bay of Islands


Full HD Video – showing the highlights of the Bay of Islands kayak trip, including circumnavigation of Urupukapuka Island and day trip to Cape Brett Hole in the Rock … 

Circumnavigating Urupukapuka, Bay of Islands

Cape Brett Hole in the Rock


Hole in the Rock

Bay of Islands
Lentils & chickpeas makhani with herbs, fresh capsicum & fresh tomatoes [Photo credit: Uta Machold)

Cable Bay Camp site, Urupukapuka Island

Whatsup Jim?
Jim in very high spirit after the beer stop at Russell

Mine is bigger than yours
Comparing Greenland paddle girth circumferences of paddles

Matt showing off a new method for getting out of his Greenland T kayak without the kayak touching the sand late Sunday evening:


Circumnavigating Urupukapuka with a Greenland Paddle

Auckland kayak trip: Matiatia Bay, Waiheke Island paddle

Matiatia Bay, Waiheke Island kayak trip is an intermediate trip (because of the distance) but very enjoyable paddle; Hugging the coasts of the tiny Browns Island and Motuihe Island and crossing the open water to Waiheke Island for lunch and paddling back.

I did this with Yakity Yak in winter on a really calm and sunny day. This was a non stop paddle to Waiheke, a lunch stop and a non stop paddle back. Only stopping to look at some passing dolphins on the way.

The paddlers

Matiatia Bay

waiheke island paddle Video!!

Full HD Video – mainly of Matiatia Bay … 

For more detailed GPS data, click here.

Auckland kayak trip: Hobsonville point to Harbour Bridge paddle via Kendall Bay, Chelsea & Little Shoal Bay

Hobsonville point to Harbour Bridge paddle is an excellent beginners paddle that is relaxing and safe with numerous exit points.

Setting off – Catalina Bay


Full HD Video – showing the highlights of the trip, including Waka Ama race we ended up in the middle of !!

Beach Haven

Kauri Point

Chelsea Sugar Factory

Waka Ama Race

Lunch stop at Little Shoal Bay

And return back to Hobsonville point


Auckland kayak trip: Tiritiri Matangi Island, Whangaparaoa

Tiritiri Matangi Island Paddle is a fantastic intermediate Auckland kayak trip, starting at Army Bay, Whangaparaoa Peninsula, past Shakespear Regional Park and circumnavigating the island with a lunch stop in the island. Despite the swell, we did the Kayak Trip and some rock gardening within 5 hours on a lovely day in May.

Army Bay, Whangaparaoa Peninsula – launch point

About 45 mins drive from central Auckland, Army Bay with a slightly surfy Beach, is an easy spot to launch from with good parking facilities (and a fresh water tap!) at the edge of the National Park.

Paddlers on this trip

I did this kayak trip with Auckland Yakitiy Yak Club who I paddle with regularly.


Full HD Video – showing the highlights of the trip, including Rock gardening in the swell !!

The coastline along North East Bay  and all the way down south to Fisherman Bay is pretty spectacular with caves and rocks. With swells over 1.5 m, it was a exhilarating dodging the rocks and boiling water. The above video pretty much sums up the excitement.


Circumnavigating the Island of Tiritiri Matangi

The island is a bird life sanctuary. It has some of NZ’s endangered species and you always spot the birdlife when you are paddling around the coast. It also has a ferry terminal and a lighthouse as well as strategically located gun placements from second world war.

Lunch stop at Tiritiri Matangi Island

With gorgeous sandy beach and the whole island for ourselves, we had a very relaxing lunch on the beach.

The return journey to Army Bay, Whangaparaoa Peninsula

Crossing the channel with a tailwind behind us was easy – we were pretty lucky as the channel can get pretty choppy when there is wind against tide.

Got back in time before rush hour. A fantastic paddle – highly recommended!

If you want the actual GPS and speed data from the trip, checkout this trip in Movescount.

Auckland kayak trip: Crusoe Island Paddle via Motuihe

Crusoe Island Paddle is a magnificent intermediate Auckland kayak trip, starting at St Helliers Beach, past Browns Island with a lunch stop at the gorgeous Motuihe island. We did this Islands of Hauraki Gulf Kayak Trip within 7 hours on a lovely April weekend despite strong head wind on the return trip.

St Helliers Bay, Auckland – launch point

About ten mins drive from central Auckland, the main boat ramp at St Heliers Beach, is an easy spot to launch from with good parking facilities / toilets & cafe’s.

Paddlers on this trip

I did this kayak trip with Auckland Yakitiy Yak Club who I paddle with regularly.

Crusoe Island

I have paddled past Crusoe Island half a dozen times before – but this is the first time I explored the actual island, named after Robinson Crusoe.

While the rest of the kayak group circumnavigated the island, I found a safe landing spot:

The view from the top of the island was pretty nice – and I could see the rest of the group rock gardening around the island:

Motuihe Island

This is one of my favourite islands in the gulf, with lovely swimmable beaches with soft sand with a slight red tint. We paddled to the southern tip of the island and hugged the coast, passing a few small beaches on the East coast of the island.

For morning tea, we stopped at Calypso Bay on the Eastern end of the Motuihe Island.

For lunch, we stopped at Ocean Beach on the Northern end of the Motuihe Island. Ocean beach is very popular with boaties and we had a fantastic break on the sheltered beach relaxing:

We set off after lunch to navigate ourselves around the Western end of the island:

The return journey past Browns Island

The return journey crossing the open water was made tough by fresh head wind and a very strong current – but we managed fine – though my fingers kept getting in the way of my snaps:

 St Helliers Beach

It is the first time I seen the St Helliers Beach at low tide on full moon. By the time we landed, the tide was coming in and the wind has dropped a lot.


Auckland Kayak Trip: Howick to Whitford Paddle

Howick to Whitford Paddle is a really relaxing ‘social paddle’, starting at Eastern Beach, Howick with a lunch stop at Whitford at Amy’s Kitchen. I did this Auckland Kayak Trip on a gorgeous April morning over the Easter holidays.

Eastern Beach, Howick

About twenty mins drive from central Auckland, the Eastern Beach, Howick is an easy spot to launch from with good parking facilities.

Some of the Paddlers

I did this kayak trip with Auckland Yakitiy Yak Club who I paddle with regularly.

Mellons Bay, Howick

Cockle Bay, Howick

Cockle Bay is an easy exit point for emergencies or can form an alternate start location if you want a shorter paddle or can be a meeting point for others joining in.


Full HD Video – showing the highlights of the trip, including exploring of the ‘storm water drain’ in Cockle Bay, ‘sinking house’ and a failed attempt at shortcut through the mangrove !!

Whitford, Howick

Beautiful countryside of Whitford is at the end of the estuary.

Lunch break

Amy’s Kitchen – where we had lunch

Map of Auckland Kayak Trip around Howick

Surfing in Orewa

This week I had my first ever surf of the summer at Orewa beach. I joined some expert kayak surfers from Yakity Yak Club and had a fantastic time in the water followed by a juicy burger and greasy wedges from a local cafe.

Need to work on that stern rudder!

Martin (in red) get hit by a spectacular wave:

Time to call it a day – till next week!

More coming next week. In the mean time feel free to leave your comments or say Hi in the comments section below.