Motuihe Island Ferry

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Cruise to Motuihe Island on The Red boats Ferry

Leave the city behind and cruise to an island paradise with white sandy beaches, native birds, plant life, and crystal-clear waters that are safe for Adults and Children to swim.

Motuihe Island is a great destination for Day trips, Picnics, and Walks around the island’s coast,

where rocky platforms alternate with sandy beaches, and give visitors a chance to explore the island, enjoy wide views of the Hauraki Gulf and visit relics of the island’s varied history.

Motuihe Island - a Hauraki Gulf Treasure

Camping is permitted on Motuihe at the various campsites and can be booked through the department of conservation. Wether you are going to lay on the beach and enjoy the sunshine, take a guided tour, go camping, or be part of the conservation effort, Motuihe will be the perfect destination for you.

Cruise details

Please Note: Bookings are essential!!!   Campers: Campers will need to book return campers tickets, this can be done online HERE   Our Ferry departs Auckland at 900am and departs Motuihe island at 4.00pm.   We have a licensed bar on board and a full commentary is given throughout the cruise that links into the history based around Motuihe Island.       Book Now    

Download Island Guides

    Motuihe Summer     Motuihe Tracks  
Adults: $43pp Return

Children: $22pp Return (up to 15 yrs)

Gold Gard: $35pp Return

Family Pass: $110.00 per family

One Way / Campers: $25.00pp Adults $10.00 Children

Note: Family Passes include 2 Adults & 2 children under the age of 15, extra children and Adults are charged at our normal Adult & Children rates.


Click here for Group charters to Motuihe Island.

Book Now
From 27th December - 22nd January 2023 we run our ferry service daily - excluding 31st December-2nd January.

From 23rd Janaury 2023 we will run every Saturday & Sunday until Easter.

Private charters to Motuihe Island are also available.
The Red boats are proud to support the Department of Conservation (DOC) and Auckland Council’s joint ‘Treasure Island’ initiative. Our vessels undergo strict inspections so we are licensed to visit conservation islands and hold a ‘Pest-Free Warrant’ that recognises our commitment to biosecurity standards.

Bio Security Checklist:

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CHECK your gear for pests:
Check that your gear is free of rats, mice, ants, skinks, soil and seeds – especially camping gear, which has ideal places for pests to hide when stored.
Take extra care to ensure gear is pest-free if you have Argentine ants or rainbow skinks where you live.

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CLEAN your gear and footwear:
Clean your clothing, footwear and camping gear, removing soil and seeds before and after each trip
Look out for cleaning stations at your departure pier, and use the brushes to scrub your shoes before boarding the ferry.

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SEAL your gear properly:
Pack food in sealed containers to avoid attracting rodents.
Your bags must be zipped closed (no open bags). Mice, ants and rainbow skinks can crawl in through the smallest hole. Be vigilant.

IMPORTANT: You must take all rubbish with you when you leave any Hauraki gulf Island.

If you are camping or staying overnight:

Packing your gear is one of the most important parts of your trip.
All gear including tents, cloths, personal belongings and food, must be thoroughly checked before being packed and then fully sealed in a zipped-up bag or a sealed container. Please ensure you remove pillow cases from pillows, these can be kept in your bag until you get to the island. Sleeping bag cases / bags must be closed tight and the small hole at the top taped up so nothing can get in.
No open top bags or boxes will be permitted on board the Vessel, everything must be in a sealed container. To save time repacking gear on the day, we recommend packing and sealing your gear prior to the trip. Gear that is not packed properly will not be permitted on the Vessel.


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Why is this so important?
Pests have successfully been eradicated from the Hauraki Gulf’s conservation islands making them sanctuaries for native birds and wildlife. But unfortunately, pests can (and do!) make it to the islands by stowing away on shoes or in gear if we’re not careful.

Pests such as, rats, mice, Argentine ants, and plague skinks injure and kill our native wildlife and compete for their food.
Invasive weeds can alter the habitat that wildlife needs to survive.
Soil may contain plant diseases like kauri dieback which is killing our kauri forests.
Rats can squeeze through a 12 mm gap, and mice can squeeze through a 7 mm gap.
Insects could hide in your bag, and weeds seeds and soil could cling to your clothing, prams, gear and shoes.
Pests threaten New Zealand wildlife. That is why there are strict bio-security measures in place for all visitors.

For more information go to the Department of Conservation Bio Security page

Found a pest?
On the mainland: Get rid of the pest and clean your gear again
On the ferry: Tell the crew what you have found and where it is
On the island: Report sightings to the DOC conservation emergency hotline 0800 DOC HOT (0800 362 468)
Motuihe is a very successful project because of the hundreds of people who have generously given their time and energy in a variety of ways since the project began in 2000.
There are many ways you can volunteer for the project either on the island or back on the mainland: sourcing seeds, planting, weeding, small building projects, manning the kiosk, guiding visitors, planning, raising funds, organising transport, designing brochures, signs or events, researching and recording island heritage and change, advertising, monitoring wild-life and leading work groups.
Please visit this beautiful island to share your skills, learn new skills, meet amazing people or enjoy a physical workout. Check out the details for different ways of volunteering. Email for Sunday trips or for mid week trips.
No matter how small or large your contribution is, when the island is covered in mature native bush, when visitors are overcome by birdsong and tripping over ancient reptiles, you will know that you have helped to achieve this fantastic outcome.

For more information go to

Safety Information

Some parts of the island are potentially dangerous. There are unfenced clifftops, where extreme care is needed, especially with children. When walking the tracks, care must be taken with uneven ground.

We offer a special rate for Volunteers on Motuihe Island $35.00pp
Motuihe Island Is a great place to go camping and be with Nature at night.

Campsites need to be booked though the department of conservations website

There is now a Norski toilet at the end of the road on Puriri Ridge.

There is no transport available on the island to transport camping equipment.

NZTM2000 coordinates: E1772695, N5925165
Latitude: -36.80361291, Longitude: 174.93584276
Adult (18+ years): $8 per night
Child (5 - 17 years): $4 per night
Infant (0 - 4 years): free

The campsite pass for rental campervans cannot be used at this campsite.
NZMCA / DOC campsite pass cannot be used at this campsite.
Backcountry Hut Passes cannot be used at this campsite.

Bookings are essential.
Bookings should preferably be completed online. Click here to book the Motuihe Campsite online. Phone and email bookings incur a service fee.

Changes and additions to bookings will incur a fee up to $10 per alteration.
Book Motuihe (Island) campsite online, or contact:
Tāmaki Makaurau / Auckland Visitor Centre
Phone: +64 9 3796476

Full office details

Before you book:
Read the terms and conditions.

Campsite zones
The Motuihe campsite is divided into five different zones.

Confidence Course: 5 tent sites on the western side of the sealed road, 25 m uphill from the toilet block.

Parade Ground: 25 tent sites on the headland above wharf road. Follow the timber box steps 100 m west of the toilet block.

Captain's Camping: 8 tent sites located at the end of the sealed road, uphill and to the left (325 m).

Puriri Ridge: 5 tent sites south of the sealed road amongst the puriri trees. Go uphill and around to the left (250 m).

Range: 5 tent sites south of the water tank tower. Go left off the sealed road (375 m).

View a map of campsite zones (PDF, 1,828K) (opens in new window)

In the area:
Camp only minutes from clear sheltered beaches and easily explore the entire island by foot.

Know before you go:    

Motuihe campsite does not provide wood barbeques, fireplaces, showers, picnic tables or cooking shelters.
No fires. No fireworks. Gas cookers may be used.
There is no power supply or light at this campsite. No generators. Bring a torch.
Water available–this campsite has a spring-fed rural water supply. Giardia may be present. For your health, boil drinking water for at least 3 minutes.
Pack in, pack out. There are no rubbish bins on this island. Take your rubbish with you.
The historic water tower is a major hazard, and the site is fenced off. Do not enter the inside of the perimeter fence or the tower.

All Camping gear, Clothes, Food and personal belongings must be checked for rodents and pest before being packed and then put in a sealed container or a zipped up bag. gear not packed properly will not be permitted on the Vessel. for more information on Bio security regulations please go to
Your safety is important to us. To ensure that your journey is smooth sailing please follow the safety guidelines listed below:

Hold On

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Use handrails when moving around the vessel
Watch for trip hazards such as raised doorsills, uneven surfaces and gangways


Stay seated

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Please remain seated until the vessel has completed berthing at the wharf.
Remove luggage/bags from seats. Place in the luggage area or on the floor away from aisle.

Listen to Announcements and Crew instructions

Health and Safety_Fullers-4 copy.jpgEnsure you listen and understand safety announcements on departure.
In case of an emergency, stay seated and listen for instructions from the crew.


Life Jackets

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Familiarize yourself with the location of the life jackets on your particular vessel
Each vessel can be different and your crew will announce the locations during your departure


Child safety

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Supervise your children at all times during the journey.
Climbing, jumping or running on board the vessel is not permitted at any time Crew have been empowered to ask your children to discontinue any unsafe or unruly behaviour


Unsafe behavior

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Do Not Stand on seats or sit on railings.

If you see another passenger displaying unsafe or concerning behavior, please notify crew immediately


Hot Drinks

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Hot drinks can cause third-degree burns, please take care with hot drinks when moving
If you need assistance carrying a hot drink, please ask the crew.

Watch Your Feet

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Watch your feet
Watch your feet when embarking or disembarking the vessel. Gangways and the Vessel can and do move.

Use all rails and hand holds provided


Restricted areas


Obey all signage on board and do not under any circumstances enter restricted or staff only areas.


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For everyone's Safety Intoxicated passengers are not allowed on any of our Vessels.

Passenger that become intoxicated on board will result in the Charter being terminated.

No Drugs or illicit substances are permitted on board any of our charters

Click here for a full copy of our Health and safety Manual for Customers while traveling on board The Red boats


We are located at Pier Z Westhaven Marina 31 Westhaven Drive.

Please ensure you pay & display for parking and Park in the White lines.
Pay by plate parking is available and Pier Z. Parking costs $4 per hour or $32.00 for upto 24 hours. Please pay attention to signage to ensure you are parking in the correct area (white lines) and paying the correct fee. For directions to Westhaven Marina, please see the map on your voucher or visit our website 

Further public carparking is available further along Westhaven Drive at NZ Marine between the white lines and is just a short 700m walk up to Pier Z, this is free on weekends and Public Holidays.

The Red boats accepts no responsibility if you choose to pay for less and receive a parking ticket if the boat is running late. Parking is your responsibility, The Red boats accepts no responsibility for customer parking.

If you are doing an overnight trip or will be away for a few days long term parking can be arranged elsewhere in the marina. Please contact Westhaven Marina +64 9 360 5870 or 0800 Marinas.
Ph: 0800 Red boats or 09 834 7337

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