Bay of Islands Boat Cruise Retreat

2023 Retreat – TBC!

Bay Of Islands, Northland, New Zealand


If you enjoy kayaking, snorkelling, meditation, paddle boarding, yoga, swimming, stargazing, marine life and bird spotting, island exploring, informative chats with the knowledgeable crew, socialising with like-minded community of participants then this is the retreat for you! 

For cruising, relaxing and adventuring in the Bay of Islands, it doesn’t get any better than this. With 3 dedicated crew, 2 yoga and meditation facilitators and a full time chef on board you will be well looked after.


“What an incredible experience – breath taking views, warm waters, fantastic healthy food, friendly crew, and the retreat was held with the most care and fabulous attention to detail! Super grateful and 100% recommend! Oh, did I mention the orca’s that graced us with their presence! Magical!” Melanie Kapiti Coast

“I did this retreat because I did it a year ago with a couple of friends. It was so good that when I heard Marie and Matt were going to run another one, I WAS IN! Not once did I regret my decision, I thought it might be hard to regain the magic from the first experience, but I have to say, it was as good and in some ways better, and absolutely magical for the rest! A container to find or be yourself!”
Di, Kapiti Coast




This unique venue on a converted car ferry, offers accommodation, meals, and a variety of activities, all from the comfort of a large stable platform. All of the accommodation is on the upper floor giving sea views from every cabin, leaving the spacious downstairs area for yoga, socialising or relaxing.

Enjoy a game of table tennis, sing along around the piano, jump off the back for a swim, or sit by the fireplace for a chat at night. And we are mobile, travelling around the world famous Bay of Islands to a new location and beach each day offering all manner of activities, from lying in the sun, to climbing to the top of a hill, to suit every taste.


“Trip into the unknown, arrived as strangers and left as friends. Yoga morning and evening, kayaking, snorkeling, paddle boarding, swimming, or just chilling, orca sightings (not sure how Marie & Matt arranged this!) Would I do this again, hell yes!!! Thank you to the crew for their patience and hospitality.” Margie Dunedin.


Start your day with meditation and yoga surrounded by nature and birdsong on one of the Bay of Islands pristine bays. Each day your practice will be at a different location, so you get to experience the diversity this area has to offer. Afternoon practice will be on board the boat. The yoga practice will be accessible to all levels, with options given for beginners.


Enjoy life aboard our floating mobile home, each cabin has a sliding door opening to the warm sea air and spectacular views. Experience being lulled to sleep in your cosy boat style bed by the sound of the waves and gentle movement of the boat. Clean, simple rooms with 2- 4 people sharing.

Water Activities

Swimming, snorkelling, kayaking and paddle boarding, you will be spoilt for choice when it comes to choosing how to enjoy the warm ocean waters that the Bay of Islands is famous for. Highlights include; kayaking ashore for our yoga practice, experiencing a guided night time adventure to marvel in the phosphorescence that dances and sparkles with each paddle stroke, and snorkelling with the abundant marine life.

Nature Walks

The Bay of islands is more than just the water and beaches, each island has its own unique gifts to be explored on foot. The opportunity to walk through the predator free bird sanctuaries offers the experience of interacting with many species of rare birds, such as North Island Robin, Saddleback, Brown teal duck, Tomtit and many more. Magnificent expansive views are the reward for climbing to the top of some of these amazing islands.

The Food

One of the highlights of our boat experience is arriving back from the great outdoors to consistently delicious and high vibrational meals that our dedicated chef has prepared in the open kitchen on the main deck. There are no secrets, everything is prepared with love, the outstanding variety, quantity, creativity and depth of flavour has to be experienced to be believed.

Secluded Beach Visits

With 144 Islands in the bay there are no shortage of beaches to choose from, each day presents the opportunity to spend time relaxing and enjoying some of the best beaches in the world. There are no cars, no crowds, no distractions of the modern world, just time for you to invest in yourself, connected to nature, the sea and the sun.

Bay Of Islands Yoga Retreat includes:

    • Four nights cruising the Bay of Islands on our own private boat, exclusive use for our retreat.
    • Boat style cabins sharing with no more than 4 people, all with incredible sea views
    • Delicious wholesome vegetarian meals prepared onboard by our live in chef; all meals are included
    • Morning meditations in the most amazing natural environments
    • Daily Vinyasa yoga sessions on secluded beaches and the boat
    • Daily Yin yoga sessions with guided self-myofascial release
    • Daily guided relaxations
    • Use of onboard paddle boards, kayaks and snorkelling gear
    • Walking trails to explore the nearby Islands
    • Night kayaking to marvel in the phosphorescence
    • Optional: Parasailing (not included in the price)
    • Plenty of time to absorb the beautiful surroundings


Vaccine pass or current negative covid test required

$2,500 bunk beds shared accommodation

$500 NZD non-refundable deposit will secure your place.

The retreat starts Saturday 26 February at 4.30pm and finishes Wednesday 2 March at 3pm

Please phone: 0211594421 or email: 

Not included in the package

Travel to and from the meeting point at Paihia wharf



“The Bay of Islands Boat Cruise retreat was a wonderful feast of yoga, meditation, and delicious food! Opportunities to swim, snorkel, kayak, walking and the option to “just be” if you chose. Our group was an electric mix of Mum’s and daughters, repeat retreaters, friends and individuals. There was always someone to kayak or swim with if you wanted company. A few group walks and daily yoga/meditation sessions brought everyone together. The Rock boat was a fabulous and unique venue with the crew taking care of everything including dishes and handling of kayaks. This has been the most wonderful holiday with the rejuvenating addition of some serious me time in a wonderful community.” Zena, Wellington.

Retreat Itinerary:


Day 1 – Paihia

Meeting at the Paihia wharf (just 30 min from Kerikeri airport or 4 hours’ drive from Auckland) at 5 pm. You will be greeted by Captain Johnny and transferred out to your floating accommodation and transport for the week. Matt, Marie and the whole crew will welcome you aboard with a refreshing glass of Matts world famous kombucha as the engines fire up and we set sail for the islands. Time to settle into your cabin and get to know your fellow participants with a welcome circle.  A beautiful sheltered bay of Motuarohia Island (one of 144 Islands that make up the Bay of Islands) will be the destination for the first night, and on dropping anchor the first of many delicious meals will be served, of course there is always the option for a swim before or after dinner as the water is always inviting. The island also has many native birds and kiwi that you can hear calling at night which is pretty special to experience as you lie in your cosy bed on the boat.


Day 2 – Motuarohia Island

An early morning paddle over to the beach followed by a short climb to the top of the central peak of the island yielding stunning sunrise views of the entire bay area from a newly constructed comfortable lookout. The island itself is magnificent, with two diverse tidal lagoons and a rich history dating back to Captain Cook and his early interactions with the resident Maori population, much of which is documented via a succession of artistic sculptures along the pathway. Meditation and Yoga practices on the perfect grass area looking out to the stunning bay is next, then paddle, swim, or catch a ride in the tender back to our boat for breakfast. A few laps swimming around the boat is a fun group activity for those that need more water time. Then we pull anchor and enjoy a short trip to neighbouring Motorua Island, which is a predator free wildlife sanctuary and is circled in walking tracks through the native bush where we are very likely to see the rare North Island Robin, Tomtit, Saddleback, and of course the many Tui and fantail. The 2-hour walk will also take us to several deserted beaches and bays with time to enjoy the serenity and soak up the sun, laying on soft golden sand. No need to walk back, as the boat has come to meet us with the most amazing lunch prepared. More swimming, snorkelling, kayaking, or paddle boarding, before we sail off to our overnight anchorage where we will dedicate two hours to our afternoon practice of deep relaxation and Yin Yoga. Appetite successfully stimulate in preparation for the next delicious offering from our incredibly talented chef, there is always time for another swim as the sun sets right off the back of our boat. Time to sit around the fireplace and enjoy a relaxed chat reminiscing an eventful day with new friends.


Day 3 – Urupukapuka Island

The day begins with a short trip in the tender to the modern jetty for our morning practice of mediation and yoga on a well-maintained flat grass area surrounded by a grove of Pohutukawa trees. A short walk after the practice up to a lookout point offers a great view of the stunning beach where we will enjoy the afternoon, but first it is back to the boat for breakfast and a swim. On route, we stop at a great spot for snorkelling with crystal clear water and perfect conditions to view many variety of fish and sea life. As we continue to sail to our afternoon destination our chef is always happy to share tips and inspiration for the meals that she prepares, before we all enjoy eating them. After lunch you can choose how you make your way to the sheltered private beach where we will spend the afternoon relaxing, swimming, snorkelling or exploring the island by foot. On returning to the boat for refreshing watermelon before our relaxing afternoon practice and onward journey to our overnight anchorage. We finished the perfect day, sitting around the fire sharing stories from the day’s activities.


Day 4 – Waewaetorea Island  – a gem tucked away in the Bay of Islands

We begin the day with our usual morning meditation and yoga practice amongst birdsong and the sound of the waves lapping at the shore. Then a short kayak trip to Waewaetorea Island’s world-class beaches. The crystal clear water offers the perfect opportunity to spot a stingray that the bays are a well-known for. A guided walk to a magnificent viewpoint with many fascinating stories about its history, which dates back to the early days of pre-European Maori civilization. After walking a loop we come back to the beach and spend some quality time relaxing, swimming and soaking up every precious moment together. We arrive back on the boat to a beautiful buffet of healthy food and head off to yet another incredible bay. For those keen on some adrenalin sports there is the option to parasail. (NB the price is not included in the retreat) Just sit back relax and enjoy the amazing sceneries at 1300 ft. To calm the excitement of the parasail we have relaxing afternoon yoga practice, followed by another delicious dinner and desert.

As night falls you can enjoy the stunning work of nature during a guided kayak trip paddling amongst the magnificent bioluminescent waters of Waewaetorea bay. The glistening bioluminescence beauty is one of the many of nature’s wonders found in the Bay of Islands.


Day 5 – Moturua Island

Another day, another breath-taking island, this time to a very special spot for our meditation and yoga practice and walk to a specially built shelter to view the rare brown teal duck with a special appearance from our friend the North Island Robyn. We return to the boat after our mornings exercise to a hearty breakfast waiting for us. Every day is a different breakfast, so much variety, creativity and depth of flavours in the food! The morning is spent relaxing, snorkelling, and different fun group activities swimming and diving. We enjoy a lunch demo of Potato Gnocchi with Sunshine Sauce and Pistachios and seawater blanched broccoli with pistachio and parsley gremolata. There is the opportunity to learn so much in these spontaneous cooking lessons and increase your cooking confidence so you can practice the recipes at home for the whole family to enjoy. We head back to Paihia wharf after lunch for a 3 pm drop off and there we say farewell to new friends made and a wonderful crew!


“Our first day on the boat we were treated to a beautiful display of graceful antics from an orca family. They seemed to follow the boat, escorting us from Paihia to our first anchorage leaping and cavorting as they travelled. They set the theme of interaction with nature.

Wildlife around at all our anchorages. We saw banded rail, saddlebacks, whiteheads, tomtits, friendly robins and curious stingrays.

The crew were very happy to help in anyway, even delighting in difficult questions about the wildlife around us. Add to this, yoga sessions in secluded bays, a different beach every morning and in the boat in the afternoon and this retreat was everything we could have hoped for!”

Barbara, Auckland

Your facilitators:

Marie (Kapiti Yoga) and Matt (ManTarA) have facilitated retreats in Asia, North America, New Zealand, and Australia for many years.

Together they offer a wealth of experience and are teaming up to co-create a truly unforgettable experience.

They are refreshingly down-to-earth approach in their approach and are passionate about conscious living and facilitating expansive growth. Get ready for a joyful journey of inspiration and transformation.