Top 10 spots for boating in New Zealand

There is huge diversity on and around the waters of New Zealand, which poses the great dilemma of where to take your pleasure craft? North Island or South Island? Coastal or fresh water?

You’re spoilt for choice here, so at Wayne Grayson we’ve summarised 10 of the best, from the top of the North Island to the bottom of the South Island, and everywhere in between.

#1 Bay of Islands, Northland

Made up of 144 islands, The Bay of Islands will be front of mind for most kiwis thinking of boating. This maritime playground is known for its calm, temperate waters and sheltered coves, its sensational scenery, fascinating history, excellent fishing, and rich marine life.

#2 Hauraki Gulf, Auckland

Those living in the City of Sails don’t have to go far to find an excellent boating location. The Hauraki Gulf comprises 50-plus islands and 500 sheltered island anchorages. If venturing beyond the inner harbour is on your radar, then Waiheke Island is a popular and easy-to-access destination with an excursion to Kawau Island or Great Barrier Island on the outer edge of the gulf also well worth considering.

#3 The Bay of Plenty

Famous for its golden sandy beaches, the east coast also has plenty to attract those who like to be out on the water. The sunny Bay of Plenty boasts harbours to provide shelter, sandy beaches and abundant waters, particularly spots off Whakatane which has been hailed as one of New Zealand’s best all-around fishing spots.

#4 Rotorua Lakes

More than a dozen major volcanic lakes can be found in and around Rotorua. The better-known ones include Lake Rotorua itself, Tarawera, Rotoiti, Okareka and the picturesque Blue Lake – named for its rich colour. The possibilities are plentiful when it comes to boating, water sports and fishing. Thanks to excellent camping grounds, picnic areas and walking tracks, these areas are also family friendly.

#5 Lake Taupō

Further south, Lake Taupō is big enough to accommodate boatloads of action. Jet boats or skis, scenic cruises, swimming, kayaking, fishing, sailing, and parasailing are frequent on Taupō’s typically calm waters. Venture along the lake front to see the famous Maori rock carvings created in the 1970s to protect the lake from further volcanic activity. The south end of the lake also includes popular holiday spots.

#6 Wellington

“The Coolest Little Capital in the World” has also been dubbed the “Windy City” and may not be synonymous with boating, but given the city is built around a harbour it offers plenty of options for activity.

#7 Marlborough Sounds

Across the Cook Strait, boating options are seemingly endless in the Marlborough Sounds. This scenic part of the north-eastern tip of the South Island is home to more than 1,500km of coastline. Offering what’s considered to be some of the best sailing in the country.

#8 Abel Tasman National Park

Still at the top of the South and located in one of the sunniest places in the country, is the spectacular Nelson-Tasman region. With its golden beaches, crystal clear and clean waters and abundance of wildlife, Abel Tasman National Park is reputed to be one of New Zealand’s most incredible places to experience by sea. Tonga Island Marine Reserve is a must-visit and a rich feeding ground for countless fish species.

#9 Canterbury

Like Wellington, another area not commonly thought of for boaties is the Canterbury region. If your boat is made for fishing, the Rakaia River offers the best fly-fishing spot in the country. Offshore, you can’t beat Kaikoura’s trench for deep sea fishing. The mountain ranges framing the Kaikoura coast makes this an awesome fishing experience, and the waters are rich with crayfish, blue cod, and terakihi – so you’ll be everyone’s favourite when you bring home dinner.

#10 Central Otago’s lakes

Like Rotorua, Central Otago is blessed with several lakes. Lake Wakatipu, Lake Wanaka and Lake Hawea are amongst the better-known pristine, aquamarine alpine lakes. Most are encased by protective mountains, making it a great spot for a day on the boat, and if you’re fishing, you’re bound to bring home some trout. Just be aware that you’ll need a licence to fish these lakes.

Are you protected?

As an island nation, Kiwis love the water and we have so many places to choose from. But are you protecting yourself adequately from the risks associated with this popular pastime? Just like you have insurance for your car, you should have insurance to cover your pleasure craft.

We can help you get the Marine Insurance protection you need while you are out on the water, so you can enjoy your boating with peace of mind.

How can we help?

At Wayne Grayson & Associates, we believe an informed insurance decision is the right one. Whether you’re after business or personal insurance, our expert brokers will ensure your insurance is the right fit for you.

We understand the complexity of Marine Insurance and can provide the right level of cover for you, your business, and your vessel.

Contact one of our Auckland-based insurance brokers for advice on the best solution to suit you or your organisation.

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