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Moutohora Island Sanctuary (Whale Island) - Day Tour

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Whakatane, New Zealand
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About Moutohora Island Sanctuary (Whale Island) - Day Tour
Moutohorā is one of News Zealand’s little-known treasures and home to a number of New Zealand’s rare and endangered plants, birds and reptiles. Located 9 kms off Whakatāne, the island is under the protection of the Department of Conservation (DOC) with access highly restricted. Departing from Whakatāne Wharf, the journey to Moutohorā is just a short 15-minute boat ride aboard our comfortable catamaran “The Moutohorā Cat”, designed to be able to nestle right onto the shore. Once ashore, the fully-guided tour allows visitors to learn about the island's unique flora and fauna, with is a chance to see a number of different species – including saddleback, red-crowned parakeet, little brown kiwi, tui – many of which are endangered or seldom seen on the New Zealand mainland. The tour includes a visit to Sulphur Bay where geothermal hot springs come up through the sand allowing for you to dig your own hot pool on the beach and ends with a circumnavigation of the island.
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Alice wrote a review Sep 2020
Putaruru, New Zealand7 contributions
Really loved this tour! Guides were amazing and friendly. Got to see some fantastic wildlife too The walk was nice and easy most of the way. There is a short steep section but the view from the top is amazing and worth it. Would recommend this to everyone!
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Date of experience: September 2020
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Stace & Sam wrote a review Aug 2020
New Zealand37 contributions1 helpful vote
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Moutohora Island Sanctuary was a definite on our honeymoon 'to do' list! We started with checking in and receiving a warm welcome from Lisa and signing a quick wavier before descending to 'bio security'. Moving across the wharf, we were then welcomed by other guests and our friendly guides Fiona, Malia and the skipper David. After a quick check to make sure we won't contaminate the Island Sanctuary we made our way onto the boat to start our quick journey to the island itself. Dolphins were just one of the highlights of our day trip! Once we embarked to the island, we were quick to be surrounded by the abundance of birdlife that calls this magical place home. The views and 'untouched' nature of the Island made for a special feeling and we soon realised we need to help protect our wildlife. A massive thank you to the whole team for allowing us just a small glimpse into the past and the future of what could be. Fi and Malia, you guys were awesome and thank you to you both for taking care of us and answering all our question! Thank you Moutohora Island!
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Date of experience: August 2020
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hglooney wrote a review Mar 2020
1 contribution
This was a lovely afternoon trip. The guides were very knowledgeable and helpful to those not so able on the walking tracks. The scenery was great. The swim and hot water at the beach was especially memorable for me. Haven't been swimming in the open sea for years. This eighty year old thoroughly enjoyed the trip. I enjoyed meeting overseas visitors too. We went in April 2020
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Review collected in partnership with this attraction
Date of experience: March 2020
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Response from WITManagement, Manager at Moutohora Island Sanctuary (Whale Island) - Day Tour
Responded Mar 17, 2020
Kia ora hglooney, Thank you for taking the time to post this review. We're thrilled you enjoyed your tour of Moutohora with us, including the opportunity to swim at Onepu Bay. Ngā mihi.
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Kyrithys wrote a review Mar 2020
Langholm, United Kingdom44 contributions19 helpful votes
A wonderful trip to an absolutely stunning island. Got to see so much wildlife including fur seals and geckos and the tour guides were so friendly. I learned so much about the island's history and wildlife from them. The view from the top of the saddle over the beautiful blue sea and Whakaari is breathtaking. There's also a little cove near a geothermal beach that's apparently quite warm and nice to swim in and we were given the chance to do so at the end of the tour. I'm not a very confident swimmer so I didn't go in but the others on the tour and the guides seemed to be enjoying it. The boat ride to/around/from the island was also great. Can also recommend their little café back at Whakatane. If I'm ever able to visit Whakatane again, I will be taking this tour again.
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Review collected in partnership with this attraction
Date of experience: January 2020
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Response from WITManagement, Manager at Moutohora Island Sanctuary (Whale Island) - Day Tour
Responded Mar 19, 2020
Kia ora Kyrithys, Thank you for taking the time to post this review, we're thrilled that you enjoyed your tour of Moutohora Island Sanctuary with us. We think she is a pretty special place and feel blessed to be able to introduce her to our visitors. Ngā mihi
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moyra2020 wrote a review Mar 2020
1 contribution
The small group and boat were perfect for the short trip to Whale Island. The knowledge of Kiwi expert, Fiona, was most informative and enjoyable. The atmosphere created with our group by David and Kelvin and Fiona was to bring the group together as one, on a most enjoyable tour, as we walked around and over the island. From the top of the mount we could see across to White Island and solemnly reflect the loss of lives a few months earlier. We then all bathed in the hot water beach which was fun and cleansing. David passed around the most gorgeous cookies as we sailed back to Whakatane. A most perfect day's outing.
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Review collected in partnership with this attraction
Date of experience: February 2020
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