Royal Mail Run Cruise

Departs Sandspit Daily at 10:30am

Ever wanted to explore an island that has no road access?  Want to learn more about the people living there?  This is your opportunity, with the Royal Mail Run Cruise!

This is the largest mail run by water in the Southern Hemisphere, and is a delightfully relaxing way for people of all ages to learn about the history and admire the natural beauty of Kawau Island.

Cruise the beautiful bays, gaining a rare glimpse into life on an island that has no roads. From the comfort of our large and luxurious ferry you will have uninterrupted 180 degree views of this scenic wonderland and historic landmarks, while your experienced and informative skipper guides you around over 75 different wharves delivering freight and mail to the island residents.

While on the mail run, you can watch Gannet birds diving for food and hear the melodic call of the Tui bird – don’t forget to keep a watch out for penguins & dolphins!

A traditional kiwi BBQ lunch enjoyed aboard the boat is an optional extra, or you can take your picnic ashore and enjoy it in the historic Mansion House grounds and subtropical gardens, where Wekas, Wallabies & Peacocks abound.

This is a once in a lifetime cruise, and is definitely one not to be missed!

Departs Sandspit Daily at 10:30am

Departs Mansion House at 2pm daily (also departs Mansion House 4:30pm on Sat, Sun & Public Holidays from Boxing Day – 28 February).


Adults: $128
Children 5 – 15 years: $67
Seniors: $120
Family Pass: $356 (2 adults + 2 children)
Pre-schoolers Free: please book them in though as we need to know numbers.

Add on a fantastic BBQ lunch: $40 Adult / $24 Child / $40Senior

What to bring:

Sunscreen, sun hat, sunglasses, towel, fishing rod, snorkel gear, comfortable walking shoes, a light jacket depending on weather and a camera

Looking after the reserve

  • Dogs and other animals are not permitted onto the historic reserve. These are a threat to the kiwi, weka and other protected wildlife.
  • Do not light fires. They can easily get out of control and could devastate Mansion House and the forests in the reserve.
  • Take your rubbish away with you. The reserve has no rubbish disposal facilities.
  • Do not remove or disturb any artefacts or other historic remains.
  • Do not camp in the historic reserve.


Non-compliance with these conditions may result in prosecution.

The Mansion House Cafe

Open daily during holiday periods and weekends between Labour weekend (late October) and Queen’s Birthday weekend (June). Cafe opening times vary. Check by ringing the cafe: phone +64 9 422 8903 or Mansion House: phone +64 9 422 8882.

Please note : Entry into historic Mansion House has a Department of Conservation fee of $10.00 per adult or child. Children under 5 are free.


You are welcome to picnic on the reserve; there is a free gas BBQ available, outdoor tables in Mansion House Bay and further tables at strategic points in the reserve.

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