Tour of White Island
Join the White Island Tours ™ crew for a 5 to 6 hour adventure to explore New Zealand’s only active marine volcano – Whakaari/White Island.
Sitting 49km off the coast of New Zealand’s North Island, this is one of the world’s most accessible live volcanoes. With the majority of the volcano sitting beneath the sea it means we are able to disembark directly into the crater complex – no mountain climbing required.
Being a live volcano there is little doubt that Whakaari/White Island is home to New Zealand’s most impressive geothermal activity. Visitors are able to get up close to roaring steam vents, bubbling pits of mud, hot volcanic streams and the amazing lake of steaming acid. The vivid hues of yellow and orange resulting from the abundant sulphur on the island make it a photographer’s dream.
Experienced guides will lead you on a 1 - 1.5 hour exploration of the inner crater, providing a fascinating commentary on the geology of the island as well as stories of attempts to mine sulphur. Along with volcanic and geothermal features, you will see the remains of the sulphur factory which have survived multiple eruptions since being abandoned in the 1930s.
Once back aboard there may be time for a swim from the boat before being served a light packed lunch.
Our journey home often provides the opportunity to spend time viewing dolphins, whales and other marine life. We hold the necessary government permits to interact with these animals and it’s a great way to end an already amazing day.
If you require transport from Rotorua, please visit our Tour to White Island including transfers from Rotorua page or if you require transport from Tauranga, please visit our Tour to White Island including transfers from Tauranga page.
Child: $130 (15 years and under)
Child: $130 (15 years and under)
- Volcanic Alert Level: Whakaari/White Island is currently on Alert Level 1. This level indicates minor volcanic unrest and is the most common alert level rating for Whakaari/White Island. White Island Tours ™ operates through the varying alert levels but passengers should be aware that there is always a risk of eruptive activity regardless of the alert level. White Island Tours ™ follows a comprehensive safety plan which determines our activities on the island at the various levels.
- White Island Tours ™ operate 7 days a week, weather permitting.
- Bookings are essential.
- We recommend that children be at least 8 years of age, however, the final decision rests with the parent or caregiver. The minimum age is 4 years. Please see our FAQs page for more information.
- The tour is very weather dependent and also numbers dependent. We will confirm with you between 7pm and 8pm the night prior whether the tour is able to operate.
- Check-in is at White Island Rendezvous, 15 The Strand East, Whakatāne. Check-in is required 30- 45 minutes prior to your advised departure time.
- Tour departure times:
Due to tides, sea conditions and operational requirements our tour departure times vary on daily basis. Our morning tours generally depart between 8am and 10am and, where offered, our afternoon tours usually depart between 1pm and 2pm. We will confirm the exact departure time with you the evening prior which is why it is very important that you provide contact details where we can get hold of you or that you ensure you contact us if you have not heard from us by 8pm.
What to Bring
- Fully enclosed shoes with good grip.
- Warm waterproof jacket
- Drink/water bottle: a water filling station is available on board to refill, as required.
- Swimming gear is optional in summer
What is Included
- Quality cruising aboard purpose-built vessels
- Professional and experienced crew and tour guides
- 1 - 1.5 hour fully guided walking tour of White Island's inner crater area
- A light packed lunchbox
- Safety gear (gas mask and hard hat)
- Permit to land on the island
- Department of Conservation permit to spend time with any marine mammals that we encounter