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Gannet Beach Adventures - more fun than you ever imagined!

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    What to Expect
    “Where else in the world can you jump on the back of a trailer and get towed along the beach by a 1949 Minneapolis-Moline tractor to a bird colony?”

    Established in 1952, Gannet Beach Adventures has a long history of providing tours on a spectacular stretch of the Hawke’s Bay coastline, from Clifton to Cape Kidnappers.  This unique, fun eco-experience tour involves travel with local experienced guides by vintage tractors and trailers on a comfortable four-hour adventure to the largest mainland gannet colony in the world. 

    Departing on the days’ low tide, visitors travel by tractor and trailer along the majestically rugged coastline.  Photographic opportunities abound as stops are made throughout the journey giving visitors an insight into how nature’s forces have shaped this amazing area. 

    Travelling through the Black Reef colony (one of two colonies we visit) visitors can almost touch the gannets in their natural environment, without even stepping off the trailer.  It was at this site in 1769 local Maori kidnapped a crew member off Captain Cook’s ship The Endeavour, the incident from which Cape Kidnappers gets its name.  

    Continuing onto the Cape itself, an approximate 90 minute break enables visitors’ ample time to picnic, swim, or enjoy a scenic walk to the Plateau colony.  Stunning views across Hawkes Bay from the top of the Cape grace many a visitor’s photo album. 

    Depending on the time of the season, visitors can witness new-born chicks, through to 4-month old gannets preparing for their first ever flight, which will take them all the way to Australia.

    Our season runs from the end of September/beginning of October to the end of April and is suitable for all age groups with moderate fitness levels – ideal for families, schools, club get-togethers, social outings, or corporate groups.  Departure times vary daily due to the low tide - check our schedule.  

    No refreshments supplied but passengers are encouraged to bring their own.  Pick-ups can be arranged from accommodation but is at an additional cost, and needs to be pre-arranged.
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    Reviews (24)
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    All reviews tractor ride cape kidnappers gannet colony walk up worth the effort beautiful birds excellent value bucket list spectacular views great experience hawkes bay great fun murray landscape cliffs nesting babies
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    1 - 5 of 23 reviews
    Reviewed 2 July 2019

    Overlooking Hawk’s Bay in this remote peninsula in the southern half of the North Island, our guide says”be careful” as we walk through the rickety gate, “ they’re more likely to peck you than move for you”. The peckers are of course the reason why...More

    Date of experience: March 2019
    Thank Eli B
    Reviewed 28 April 2019

    WOW!!!! I thoroughly enjoyed my Gannet Beach Adventure for the very first time last Nov 9, 2018. It was an awesome experience riding on a vintage tractor and the driver was so enthusiastic giving me us a lot of interesting info about the place. The...More

    Date of experience: November 2018
    Thank LaagPirmi
    Reviewed 4 April 2019 via mobile

    Tony was absolutely outstanding! He is a treasure trove of information and delivers it in a fun & entertaining way! He took pictures of us and even had some hot coffee, tea, and his “homemade cookies” that were critical when we got to see all...More

    Thank joshua_arola
    Reviewed 13 February 2019

    We were on the trip the day before the recent landslip. It was a fantastic day out, not only the experience of seeing the Gannets up close but the enthusiasm of the tractor drivers made it a very special day. I send best wishes to...More

    Date of experience: January 2019
    Thank Geri B
    Reviewed 7 February 2019

    This was one of the first tour packages that we booked. There were good reviews about this and we arrived with great anticipation, looking forward to the black reef tour. After a short safety briefing and introduction, we got onto the tractor and set off...More

    Date of experience: December 2018
    Thank bkobog
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    Key Details
    • Gannet Beach Adventures
    • Duration: 4h
    • Mobile Ticket Accepted
    • Languages Offered: English, Chinese, Dutch, French, German, Japanese, Korean, Russian, Spanish
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