- Nature and History Combined 

Five Day D'Urville Island Tour
Marlborough Sounds, South Island, NZ

Driftwood Eco Tours Fitness Level Required 3+ / 5

Immerse yourself in the dramatic natural beauty of Rangitoto ki te Tonga, D’Urville Island, and make new friends on this fun and informative small group tour.

Join us on a once in a lifetime trip to D'Urville Island and be guided into one of New Zealand's most difficult to access islands located in the remote reaches of Marlborough Sounds.


Spend your days exploring D’Urville Island - an island that boasts a unique blend of rugged scenery, natural history and adventure.


Combine this amazing environment with our friendly and experienced tour guides and a great group of people, all sharing similar interests. Try your hand at blue cod fishing, meet the locals and hear stories from the island's early history.


All accommodation, transport and meals are organised for you.

Tour Highlights

  • Explore D'Urville Island from a charter boat with a local skipper.

  • Encounter wildlife and flora such at flowering rewarewa, endemic king shag, dolphin and fernbird.

  • Your guide will give you a commentary of the stories of the local families who lived here.

  • Meet locals who will share their love of the island with you.

  • Cruise through the turbulent waters of the French Pass, a thrilling experience!

  • We make a donation to Westpac Life Flight rescue helicopter service for each tour we take to the island.

  • 2 experienced tour guides on each tour, so we can personalize your experience for you.

Meet new friends, try new things.

View north over D'Urville Island
View north over D'Urville Island

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King shags - kawau pateketeke
King shags - kawau pateketeke

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Catching blue cod for dinner
Catching blue cod for dinner

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Tour Departure Dates:


Mon 20th Feb 2023

Mon 6th March 2023

Mon 1st May 2023

Departs from Blenheim

It is suggested to book early to

avoid disappointment.

Tour Price:


NZ$3,850 per person

Includes beach front cottage accommodation, all meals prepared by the resort, two way ferry crossing with van, a 6 hour charter boat tour, blue cod fishing, daily water taxi rides.

Tour Duration:

Five days


Ten seater van. Certified charter fishing vessel. Water taxi jetty to jetty.


Comfortable two bedroom beach front cottages at D'Urville Island Wilderness Resort in Catherine Cove (own cottage and bathroom for couples, shared two bedroom cottage and 1 bathroom for twin share).


0800 708 844


Tour Itinerary 

Journey by van from Blenheim to Te Aumiti, French Pass, where you’ll then cruise through the horizontal waterfall and tidal whirlpools to Catherine Cove.


Your home for the tour, Catherine Cove is surrounded by native bush and birdsong. In the evening, relax and savor the island’s legendary blue cod, caught earlier in the day, with a glass of local wine. It’s the perfect location to base yourself for a series of adventures by day and enjoy great company by night.

Always a highlight of the tour, you’ll learn about the geology of the mineral belt, where early Māori settlers mined the natural argillite to create beautifully rendered tools, used in cultivation, waka (canoe) building and weaponry.


You’ll also spend a day aboard a charter boat exploring the rugged coastline and many smaller conservation islands with 4th generation local, Bill Webber.


Depending on the weather, you might be lucky enough to cruise through “the hole in the rock”, part of an extinct volcanic crater of the Paddock Rocks—or steam past Takapourewa, Stephens Island, a remote, windswept wildlife sanctuary with generations of lighthouse keepers' stories.

Spend your days exploring the island, taking in the breath-taking scenery of farms, bush and the outlying islands. Discover the fauna and flora unique to the island, including the endemic king shag, one of the rarest cormorants in the world—if you’re lucky, you might even be able to snap a quick photo.


You’ll also get to engage with the community, spending time swapping stories with locals!

Tour Inclusions:

  • Travel from Blenheim to the island and return by air conditioned Toyota Hiace van.

  • Return each night to your comfortable beach front cottage with café and bar only steps away.

  • Two guides who will share their knowledge of the island.

  • A day tour by charter boat with a local skipper exploring the waterways around the island.

  • Guided fishing, your catch will be filleted and cooked that night.

  • All food is provided (alcoholic beverages are at your own cost, there is a bar at the resort café).

Please Note: You are welcome to bring your own wine, however any empty bottles must also be packed out.

Other Details

Do you need help with organising transport, flights or insurance for your tour? We can refer you to a person who can organise your travel and travel insurance before and after your tour. Just let us know how as early as possible.

We are committed to keeping everyone safe, including the people we visit. To achieve this we have put in place a Covid 19 code of practice. Please read this here.


Want to create your own private tour? Talk to us about creating a completely customised personal tour for you, your partner, family or friends. We would love your dreams become reality. 

"Fabulous scenery and tantalizing family and social histories"
Jacky Renouf
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