Goat Island Kayaking in a Clear Kayak

You’re probably familiar with kayaking, but what about clear kayaking?

Clear kayaking, also known as Clearyaking is perfect if you are looking for something fun and adventurous to do. Goat Island kayaking is well worth the road trip, it’s a great spot for it and seeing the ocean from different perspective is so cool.

Keep reading below to find out why you should add Clearyaking to your New Zealand travel bucketlist!

What is a Clearyak?

A clearyak is very similar to a kayak except for the fact that it is clear. It comfortably sits two people and tends to be a little bit wider than your standard kayak. It’s basically like your personal glass bottom boat except the entire thing is clear, not just the bottom, meaning you have epic views of all the sea life below you. 

They aren’t very heavy and are suitable for ages 3 and up. It doesn’t matter if you’re not fit, Goat Island kayaking is for everyone!

Why Goat Island kayaking?

Goat Island is the perfect place to enjoy New Zealand’s marine life up close because it’s actually a marine reserve. You’re quite likely to see a vast variety of fish such as snapper, eagle rays, red moki, blue maomao and possibly even stingrays! 

Another thing that makes Goat Island so special is it was New Zealand’s first marine reserve, established back in 1975, officially opening in 1977.

On a nice sunny day you’ll find clear blue water in this beautiful part of the ocean. It’s not only a great spot for kayaking, but a great swimming spot too! During the summer months the water is warm enough that you don’t need a wetsuit.

If you want to mix it up after kayaking, grab a snorkel and explore the area further. There’s an island you can swim across too, provide the currents aren’t too strong. Or if none of that floats your boat, it’s possible to just relax on the sand and take in all the scenery. 

How to get to Goat Island

Getting to Goat Island is fairly simple, even though it is called an island you can actually drive here! The marine reserve is located between the beach and the island so you don’t have to start on the island itself to go Goat Island kayaking.

If you’re driving from Auckland, the trip takes about an hour and a half. Drive to Warkworth and there will be signs through Matakana to Leigh marked ‘Goat Island Marine Reserve’. From Leigh it’s only another 3 kilometres and the signs will be there to guide you the last bit of the way.

How much does it cost

The cost can vary depending on how long you chose to rent the clearyak for. Prices start at $60 for 30 minutes, going up to $240 for 120 minutes. When I was here I just hired the clearyak for the 30 minute minimum and that was a good amount of time to me.

If you’re looking at buying an experience for a friend, they also offer gift vouchers for various session lengths.

Goat Island kayaking cost breakdown:

  • Clearyak double 30 mins = $60
  • Clearyak double 60 mins = $120
  • Clearyak double 90 mins = $180
  • Clearyak double 120 mins = $240

*Prices updated 09/02/22

Do I need to book Goat Island kayaking?

It can get pretty busy there during summer so book Goat Island kayaking in advance if you don’t want to miss out! It’s super easy to book through the Clearyaking website here.


At the end of the day I’d highly recommend a trip to Goat Island, hopefully I’ve managed to convince you to give clearyaking a go!

Why not make a day of it and invite a few friends along. There are also some accommodation options nearby along with some campgrounds if you decide to stay for a few days.

There are a lot of incredible beaches around this area that are well worth exploring so you certainly won’t run out of things to do!