Island Hopper Cruise – Bay Of Islands

Join the Island Hopper Cruise for a unique and unforgettable day sailing adventure!

Come spend a day with the Barefoot Sailing crew for a magical day sailing cruise to a fantastic island destination. If you’re looking for something a little different, you’ve found it! This small group tour is designed to suit the active/adventurer, but equally relaxing if you’re looking for an easy going day. There is something for everyone on our all inclusive Island Hopper Cruise and with plenty of deck space to spread out and relax, so grab a seat and chalk up some leisure time. Enjoy a day of sun kissed skin, windswept hair, and salty smiles!


  • CRUISE DETAILS – Sept-April
  • PRICE: $155 Adult, $130 Child (12 & under)
  • DEPARTS: 10am sharp! Please be ready to board the boat at Paihia beach by 9.45
  • DURATION: 6 hours. Lunchtime island stopover for 2 hours. Returning to Paihia beach 4pm
  • INCLUSIONS: Morning – Coffee/tea/hot chocolate & biscuit Lunch – Delicious packed picnic lunch with plenty of goodies Afternoon – refreshing cold drink on the return sail
  • WHAT TO BRING: Hat, sunglasses, sunblock, jacket, swimwear, towel, walking shoes, drinking water, SMILE 🙂
Support Local Business

We are a sustainable boating tourism operator, supporting conservation projects in the bay of islands. Part of your ticket price is donated to project island song, bringing our community and visitors the benefit of a wildlife sanctuary on the islands of Ipipiri.

All aboard!

Departing from Paihia beachfront, the boat pulls right up to the beach where you can step aboard from the shore line. We set sail for our day’s adventure to a beautiful island destination! With 144 islands, we really are spoiled for choice with spectacular destinations for our day sailing adventures. We have our favourites of course, and we can’t wait to share one of our top destinations with you, we will choose from either Urupukapuka, Motuarahia, Moturua, or Waewaetoria for our island stopover. Enjoy a morning tea cuppa and bikkie along the way and we’ll share some great conversation with you, along with insights to the Bay of Islands geography and history. If you’re a keen sailor, or wanna be sailor please let us know we’d love to include you if you want to take part, we’ll even reserve VIP seating with the captain & crew.

Barefoot catamaran anchored at Pahia Bach

You will find us at Pahia Beach. The boat pulls right up to the shore.


Kick your shoes off and step aboard.


Island adventures

There’s nothing better than exploring a remote island after sailing into a beautiful bay – it’s all part of the adventure!

The boat anchors right up close to the beach where you can step off and enjoy a delicious packed lunch at a stunning picnic spot of your choice. There are hiking trails which you can follow to find picturesque views, soak up the sounds of the bird song, and find yourself at another secluded bay. For the water babies, snorkelling and paddle boarding is top on the list of things to do. Enjoy a refreshing swim or simply dig your toes into the sand and relax – the choice is yours!


There’s a wealth of wildlife to see when sailing in the Bay of Islands. From the deck of Kopiko you may get the chance to see a range of seabirds, and penguins are often popping up. The bays are home to stingrays, and of course, there’s a chance that you might see some dolphins or orca whales too!

Learn about Project Island Song wildlife sanctuary as we reach our island destination. The group of 7 islands of Ipipiri are being restored, replanted and many endangered bird, lizard and invertebrates are being relocated here to create a thriving eco-system. You will experience rare and endangered bird species on your island adventures, thanks to the effort of Project Island Song we are blessed with abundant birdsong in the beautiful regenerating native bush, including our rare kiwi, kakariki, saddleback, robin, whitehead, pateke, and many more. Barefoot Sailing Adventures donates a portion of your Island Hopper ticket price to Project Island song, so every one of our visitors is contributing to this great conservation initiative.

Photo Credit – Darren Markin

Homeward bound

Once we’ve finished our island adventures we set sail again, making the most of our beautiful sea breezes on the home run. So watch the wind fill the sails, kick back, relax and enjoy the peace and tranquility – a perfect end to our Day Sailing adventures.

The Barefoot Crew offer you a great opportunity to experience day sailing at its best, in a world-renowned sailing destination. So grab some friends, bring the family or simply take some time out for yourself.


To find out more about our day sailing trips, contact the friendly team at Barefoot Sailing Adventures today!

Frequently Asked Questions – Good to know before you go.

How do I find the boat?

You will find us on the beach at Paihia. We won’t be hard to find once you get there, just walk along the beach and you will see the boat anchored very close to the shore line. If you’re not sure search google maps for Barefoot Sailing Adventures and you will easily find us.

Will I get wet?

Absolutely! But not too wet -you will have to step into the water to get onto the boat. Sometimes it is ankle or calf deep, other times a wave will roll in and it may be up to your knees. So kick your shoes off and roll up your trousers before you step aboard. Sometimes we get the odd wave splash on the boat, it’s all part of the fun!

What should I bring?

Just the usual – bottle of water, warm clothing/ jacket, footwear for island walks, swimwear, towel hat, sunglasses, sunblock (please not spray sunblock it eats the paint) and please do bring clothing that you can cover up with, the summer sun can be intense on your skin so be prepared for this as much as the possibility of cool wind.

Do I wear shoes on the boat?

Nope, just like the name suggests we are Barefoot Sailing Adventur-ers???? Kick off your shoes at the shore and experience the Kiwi barefoot culture for yourself, it’s quite liberating!

Does the boat lean over?

No, the boat sits flat while sailing which means it is a very comfortable experience, especially for first time sailors or families with children. There is plenty of deck space and we have bean bags to relax on if you are sitting on the front half of the boat, the back half has seating.

Can I help sail the boat?

Yes, our skipper loves to get people involved if they want to take the helm or help set the sails. There are some conditions or points of sail that it is not practical to have others helm the boat, but for the most part you are very welcome.

What is included in the picnic lunch?

Our delicious packed picnic lunch is all made in a handy bag ready for you to take with you on your island adventures. It includes a delicious freshly made deli sandwich, fruit, muffin/cake, chips and a muesli bar. It’s a nutritious lunch, with some goodies for the sweet tooth. We don’t like anyone going hungry so we’ve made sure its a good portion. Vegetarian option available, please select how many vegetarian lunches for your group when booking. PLEASE NOTE: SPECIAL DIETARY REQUIREMENTS SUCH AS ALLERGIES, GLUTEN FREE, VEGAN OR ANY SPECIFICS SHOULD BE SELF CATERED FOR YOUR SAFETY AND PERSONAL SATISFACTION.

Do we have a motor?

Yes we do. We use the motor to get in and out of the beach to anchor. We just love sailing! So we like to sail as much as possible, the boat performs far better under sail than under motor so sailing it is! There are times where if there is not enough wind to reach our destination we will have to use the engine, or to keep to our time schedule – we don’t like to make anyone late to catch their ferry/bus.

Will we see Dolphins?

Yes we do see dolphins, not every day but they are there and if they happen to be where we are sailing it is a lovely experience to see them play around the boat. We like to advise you that the resident dolphins in the Bay of Islands are very sensitive to human interaction, we do not encourage any interaction with them, we will not follow them nor do we do any swimming with them. We prefer to leave them be to do what dolphins do best…be dolphins in the wild !!

Will my children be ok on the sailing boat?

We have children of all ages on our cruises, even babies on occasion. The trip is 2 hours sailing to island, 2 hours at the island, and 2 hours sail home. This is a considerable time for kids, but we find they are usually entertained with all the goings on and the beach time is great. If your child is exceptionally active this might not be too well suited as we cant allow them to run around the boat, but play is ok, and we are really happy for interactive kids to join the sailing.

Our experience is if both parents are very nervous on the boat the kids will play up, so one confident parent is the key to a good day sailing. Please consider the enjoyment of our other guests too when deciding whether it is a suitable trip for your family. If you are unsure please call we are happy to chat with you about it, and we’d love you to enjoy an amazing family day experiencing the Bay of Islands with us. Please note, the maximum number allocation we have for the boat is 16, so young children and even babies are considered a whole person and count towards this number so we can’t give tickets free for infants or toddlers.

What about the weather? Aaah, the million dollar question!

New Zealand can be tricky to plan for with the weather particularly when choosing outdoor activities, so to be realistic you just have to be prepared for anything.

We do try our best and are very vigilant when it comes to weather forecasting.

Safety is always our foremost concern, then comfort. We are generally not too bothered by a rain shower here or there. It is an open boat, so we have rain poncho’s to cover up and stay warm/dry, or you can pop down into the cabins if you want. If the forecast looks like a serious day of rain we which will make the trip a misery we will cancel/postpone, as we would like our guests to have a good experience.

The skipper is experienced to make decisions based on the weather, and the final decision will be his (keeping in mind that we are reliant on information that is given to us, we can’t promise the forecast will be correct). If we decide to cancel a full refund will be given if we can’t make alternative arrangements for another day that suits your travel plans.

We understand that everyone has a different level of comfort when it comes to the weather, and we do our best to make everyone as comfortable as we possibly can. Sometimes people are not used to the wind, the sea state, salty splashes, or a bit of rain, or even the sunshine. But as Kiwi’s this is all part of our lifestyle, and it is how New Zealand has become so well known for it’s Adventure Tourism, because we are so good at it!