• Escorted Tour

Cruise Marlborough Sounds

Join us on this private charter where we will extensively explore the region including many shore excursions. 

We visit all three of the main Sounds - Queen Charlotte, Pelorus and Kenepuru along with d’Urville Island, French Pass and the Tory Channel. You will get to go ashore and visit historical Ships Cove. Captain James Cook visited this spot five times on his voyages to this part of the world. 

The opportunity to walk part of the Queen Charlotte Walkaway is available and then of course we will visit a conservation island with its prolific birdlife. Kayak’s and fishing equipment is available onboard. 

The heritage Explorer was built in New Zealand.  The vessel is very comfortable with a spacious lounge and bar area.  Every cabin has private facilities. All meals, house drinks and shore excursions are included.

There are 10 cabins and maximum group size is 18.

Your travel itinerary

Friday 25 November

Auckland (or Alternative) – Blenheim

Dinner iconDinner

Depart on an Air New Zealand flight. On arrival transfer to our central city accommodation where we have a welcome dinner this evening.


Saturday 26 November

Blenheim - Picton - Embark

Breakfast iconBreakfast Lunch iconLunch Dinner iconDinner

After breakfast we will transfer to Picton to board the Heritage Explorer. The captain and expedition team will be waiting to welcome you aboard and show you to your cabin. You will have the opportunity to familiarise yourself on board. This afternoon we set sail along Queen Charlotte Sounds.


Sunday 27 November

Monday 28 Queen Charlotte Sound

Breakfast iconBreakfast Lunch iconLunch Dinner iconDinner

Two full days exploring the waterways and islands of Queen Charlotte Sound. Opportunities to head ashore, walk a section of the Queen Charlotte Walkway, search for birdlife on the predator free islands. A visit to Tory Channel, brings its whaling history to life; Ships Cove and Captain Cook’s memorial, Blumine Island where the translocation of several rare bird specie includes the once widespread Orange fronted Parakeet, now New Zealand’s rarest parakeet.

Tuesday 29 November

d’Urville Island

Breakfast iconBreakfast Lunch iconLunch Dinner iconDinner

We sail through the iconic French Pass with the fastest tidal flow in the country and follow the wake of French Explorer Dumont d’Urville. Then explore the island ‘now predator free’ named in his honour. Dolphins and New Zealand Fur Seals are frequently seen in the waters that surround the island, it was here that Pelorus Jack who famously stole the nation’s heart, guided ships across the dangerous waters of Cook Strait between 1888 / 1912.

Wednesday 30 November

& Thursday 01 Pelorus Sound

Breakfast iconBreakfast Lunch iconLunch Dinner iconDinner

Pelorus Sound is the largest in the Marlborough Sounds its main channel winds some 55 picturesque kilometres from Cook Strait to Havelock. Today we will explore Nydia Bay and the more active will be able to enjoy the walking part of the Nydia Track. We then head to Ngawhakawhiti Bay where it’s possible to get a glimpse of what the Sounds would have been like before the native forest was cleared. On the final night we will enjoy a farewell dinner

Friday 02 December

Disembark Havelock- Blenheim - Auckland

Breakfast iconBreakfast

This morning we arrive at Havelock, after a final breakfast and farewells, a transfer takes you to Blenheim airport for the return flight to Auckland or your alternative destination.


• Return flights from Auckland to Blenheim (Other centres on request)

• One nights accommodation in Blenheim 

• Breakfast and Dinner Blenheim

• Landing fees 

• Pre/post cruise transfers 

• 6 nights onboard Heritage Explorer in a state room of your choice. 

• All meals and house drinks onboard

• All expedition shore excursions.

• Kayaks and Fishing equipment 

• Pukekohe Travel escort subject to 16 passengers travelling


Cost Per Person *
Auckland - Auckland
Twin ShareSingle 
 Royal Suite  $7,699  N/A
 Salvin’s Stateroom  $6,655  $11,999
 Buller’s Stateroom  $5,950  On application
 Wandering Stateroom  N/A  $7,499

*This is a cash or direct debit price. Credit cards will incur a 2% fee
*Itinerary and costs subject to change, airline and fuel charges and currency fluctuations prior to final payment


• Travel Insurance

• Items of a personal nature

Booking Conditions

 A non-refundable deposit of $1000 per person is required to secure your place on the tour.

• Full payment is due 26 August 2022

• Bookings made after 26 August 2022 – full payment at time of booking


• Deposit – non-refundable

• Full payment – non-refundable

• No refund can be made one the tour is underway.

Travel Insurance

We strongly advise all participants take out suitable travel Insurance to cover cancellation costs.Please ask for a quote.


General Information

• Please note there is limited cell phone coverage during the cruise

• It is recommended that you bring good walking shoes which are ideal for stomping around the beaches and bush.

Health and Fitness

A good standard of health and fitness is required and clients should be independently mobile with the ability to walk unaided on uneven surfaces and negotiate stairs. 

Please arrive healthy , fit and ready to travel.

Ship Information

The ‘Heritage Explorer’

The state-of-the-art technology provides a comfortable expedition ship with high performance dual Scania 653 horsepower engines capable of 10 knots, bow thrusters, fin stabilisers, full air-conditioning, sound attenuated twin generators and a hydraulic aft ramp, while a comprehensive navigation package ensures the ultimate Kiwi adventure awaits all guests.

Vessel Type: Expedition Yacht

Expedition Staff & Crew: 5

Guests: 18

Cabins: 10

Length: 30m

Breadth: 7.8m

Draft: 1.93m

Gross Tonnage: 76.1gt

Engine: 653 horsepower

Cruising Speed: 10 knots

Tenders: 2


Covid-19 Vaccination

• All travelers must be fully vaccinated and be able to provide a copy of the Ministry of Health Vaccine Record Card with proof of your full Covid-19 vaccination. It is important that the date of vaccination of your final dose is at least 14 days before the tour departure date.

Covid-19 Tour Disruption

• If this tour is cancelled/postponed due to Covid-19 Government travel restrictions Pukekohe Travel reserves the right, in addition to any supplier imposed amendment and cancellation fees, to charge a service and administrative fee of $200 per person.

• If self-isolation requirements are imposed by the Ministry of Health whilst on tour, Pukekohe Travel accepts no liability for any additional costs incurred.

• Pukekohe Travel will assist in every way possible to ensure any additional travel arrangements required are made with the minimal amount of disruption and in the most cost-effective manner.

• You cannot begin or continue to travel if you have received a positive Covid-19 test in the last 14 day

Terms and Conditions

• For full terms and conditions please visit our website www.pukekohetravel.co.nz/termsandconditions or ask our tour consultant for a copy

Note: Pukekohe Travel reserves the right to correct errors and omissions on our website without recourse.
* Itinerary subject to change