White Island or Whakaari is New Zealand’s most active Volcano. Volcanic activity has been found here since Captain Cook visited in 1769. Approximately 2km in diameter White Island covers an area of around 800 acres. The Island has a unique shape above and below the water and is not always easily accessible. A height of 1600m makes this amazing natural spectacle one of Bay of Plenty’s most popular tourist attractions.
The correct New Zealand name for White Island is Te Puia 0 Whakaari which means “The Dramatic Volcano” simple yet fairly accurate.
White Island is located 38km off shore from Whakatane. White Island is literally the biggest attraction in the Coastal Bay of Plenty Region. Tauranga or Rotorua is a pleasant 1hr drive away from Whakatane where most people come when wanting to visit White Island. Getting to the island can be difficult by boat if not perfect conditions at sea. The hardest part being the landing area on the island. Make sure you ask tour providers what happens when a cruise or flight is delayed due to bad weather.
The most popular ways to get to White Island is by sea with Peejays White Island tours or the local Helicopter operator Frontier.
A Frontier Heli adventure involves a very cool 2.5hr trip. Scenic flight from Whakatane airport then a walking tour on the island in and around this amazing natural phenomenon. Tour from $695pp
Pee Jay’s White Island tours has been a family run business for many years. A professional tour operator providing a real unique look at a natural attraction in a sometimes challenging environment. A 5-6 hour tour from Whakatane or Rotorua, weather permitting aboard one of the 4 Pee Jay Launches. Tours from $229 per adult, $130 per child
- PeeJay IV is a 60 foot launch. Purpose-built for White Island Tours and launched in 1997
- Predator is a 64 foot catamaran, part of the fleet since 2016.
- Phoenix is 60 foot catamaran that, like Predator, has been part of our fleet since 2016.
- Moutohorā Cat is a 41 foot catamaran that has been part of the fleet since 2011.