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Exploring Rotoroa Island


EMR Volunteer Summer getting her group ready to snorkel Ladies Bay - Photo by Becky Carton
EMR Volunteer Summer getting her group ready to snorkel Ladies Bay - Photo by Becky Carton

On Saturday the 6th April 2024, 52 people joined us on a journey to Rotoroa Island to explore what lies beneath the waves of this predator free island sanctuary in Tīkapa Moana. We started our day with a cruise over to the island on the Explore ferry, once we arrived the island ranger was able to give us a warm welcome and orientation. We then got our awesome volunteers to load up our snorkel gear to transport it over to Ladies Bay courtesy of the rangers ute.



White Spotted Jellyfish
EMR crew member Callum showing his group a huge white spotted jellyfish - Sophie Journee

As soon as we were set up at Ladies Bay we were straight into snorkelling, with our volunteer snorkel guides giving their all important safety briefing before guiding through groups across the shallow reef. Whilst exploring participants spotted whai repo/eagle rays, wheke/octopus, white spotted jellyfish, hui/sweep, parore and more! Some brave souls even jumped in again for a second snorkel where we saw even more wheke/octopus. Once we were warm and dry participants were free to explore the island sanctuary, discovering the rare endemic manu/birds that call this island home.





Finally it was time to head back on the ferry to the mainland and say ka kite to Rotoroa Island. We throughly enjoyed our time on island and based on feedback so did all our participants, we look forward to returning next year for another snorkelling event.


A curious wheke popping out to say kia ora! - Sophie Journee
A curious wheke popping out to say kia ora! - Sophie Journee

A huge thank you to our event funders Tū Manawa Active Aotearoa and The Bobby Stafford Bush Foundation as well as our event partners Rotoroa Island Trust and Explore. Of course our events would not be possible with out the passion and dedication of our epic team of volunteers. If you would like to join our volunteer team you can register using the link below.




If you would like to support our public events or school education programmes you can donate money or sign up as a volunteer. We always need help with a wide range of tasks, from snorkel guiding, to photography, to funding applications and more. If you have any questions about volunteering in Tāmaki Makaurau feel free to email our volunteer coordinator callum@mountainstosea.org.nz




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