We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Unique experience for first timer!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Goat Island Marine Reserve

Goat Island Marine Reserve
Goat Island Road | Leigh, Warkworth, New Zealand
Improve this listing
Ranked #3 of 17 things to do in Warkworth
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Attraction details
Auckland Region, New Zealand
Top Contributor
59 reviews 59 reviews
24 attraction reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
“Unique experience for first timer!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2014

What more could you want than walk out into the water, put on your snorkel and see snapper and other sea life all around you? We arrived at low tide to see many people doing just that. This was my first visit to Goat Island Marine Reserve so without any prior knowledge of the place and I was amazed to see how easy and safe it was for people to just walk out into the water and start snorkeling! It was a calm sunny day so the conditions looked ideal. The area itself is a sheltered bay and ideal for snorkeling and diving, or exploring the rock pools if you prefer to stay on land.
We went out on the Glass Bottom Boat and saw many snapper which seemed very intrigued to see us (apparently they follow the boat expecting to get fed, but the operators don't allow it) The trip takes you around Goat Island and gives an interesting commentary of the marine reserve.
I didn't go prepared for swimming but I was happy exploring the rock pools and taking lots of photos.
There are snorkels for hire on the beach and clean toilet/changing facilities.

Handy to take sun shelter/umbrella, swimwear and picnic. Easy to spend the day there.

Visited March 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

159 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    97
    43
    16
    2
    1
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa
Top Contributor
87 reviews 87 reviews
29 attraction reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
52 helpful votes 52 helpful votes
“Even in wet weather, worth a visit”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 13, 2014

A beautiful place. It was rather wet and windy the day we were there, so I didn't swim. My husband did, and was amazed at the size and number of the fish. My father-in-law and I checked out the Marine Reserve Discovery Centre, which was well-arranged and presented its information in a variety of formats and in manageable amounts. Staff very friendly and helpful.

Visited February 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auckland Region, New Zealand
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“10 pound snapper in waist high water”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 12, 2014

We had a fabulous afternoon here with a 10 pound snapper keeping up company only a few feet from the beach. i don't snorkel so I loved it!

Visited March 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auckland Region, New Zealand
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Too cold and wet to snorkel, still beautiful to look around”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2014

Goat Island is a beautiful place. Obviously not ideal for swimming when the wind is up and the waves a crashing around. But still lovely to walk around. I have been snorkelling here when calm during the Summer and it is a wonderful amazing place to discover fish under the water. Recommend it and will go again and hopefully more often in the Summer months.

Visited February 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auckland Central, New Zealand
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
“Gratifying Visit to Goat Island, New Zealand's First Marine Reserve”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 1, 2014

Where : Goat Island Marine Reserve, near Leigh, Auckland, New Zealand
When : 02 January 2012


A day after the New Year, we decided to go to Goat Island, New Zealand's first marine reserve. It is situated near the coastal community of Leigh in the northeastern part of Auckland region. The reserve is about 90 kilometres from where we live or just a little more than an hour drive.

As we approach Goat Island, the road was already jam packed with vehicles, and it took us a couple of minutes to secure a nice parking spot. When we arrived, the place was almost covered with sea of people going back and forth carrying snorkeling paraphernalia, kayaks and swim boards. Some people were in their tents chatting and drinking with their mates while others were on their beach towels sunbathing.

The convenient way to see the marine life in the area without getting wet is by riding the glass bottom boat, which we did. As we sail, we were able to see fishes of varying colours and sizes swimming freely and gracefully. The ride lasted for about half an hour. It was indeed an awesome experience to see marine creatures in their natural habitats and not in confined environments.

Here are some of our photos of the place ---> http://thevillasenors.blogspot.co.nz/2013/01/gratifying-visit-to-new-zealands-first.html

Visited January 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Goat Island Marine Reserve also viewed

Auckland, Auckland Region
Warkworth, Auckland Region
 
Leigh, Auckland Region
Warkworth, Auckland Region
 

Been to Goat Island Marine Reserve? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Goat Island Marine Reserve, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.