You will see
- Farmland & forests
- Great scenery
- Lake Rotorua
- Rotorua City
The Rotorua Explorer usually departs between 10 am and 10.30 am and will return you to the ship 7 hours later but at least 1 hour before the ships sailing time. The start times are adjusted so that this can be achieved so if in doubt please meet our staff as early as possible once the ship is in port so we can update you.
Depart Tauranga for the 60 minute scenic drive to Rotorua. Your driver will provide information on the destinations you could visit and the best options.
There are 5 main stopping points in Rotorua and we circulate 4 times during the day plus a final collection point at the Agrodome to fit in with their last show if needed. The return to Tauranga is by a different scenic route through forests, deep gorges, farmland and kiwifruit orchards. There is no obligation to visit any destination, just take a walk around [plenty of things to see for free] or visit the shops etc.
The Rotorua Explorer visits the following 5 drop off and collection points:
1. Te Puia Maori Arts & Crafts Institute [also adjacent to Te Whakarewarewa thermal village, a 5 minute walk]
2. Rotorua Information Centre [ i-site] in the centre of the city.
3. Rotorua Lake Front - adjacent to Volcanic Air helicopter and flight centre and also the Kawerau Jet boat offices.
4. Polynesian Spa, which is also close to the Government Gardens, Bath House Museum and the Blue Baths.
5. Skyline Skyrides Rotorua - also adjacent to Rainbow Springs [2 minutes walk] and OGO, another version of the famous ZORB rides, as well as Canopy Tours
You will be given a full info sheet on the day with a timetable that suits your tour departure time, which does vary from ship to ship. We also offer a discount of 10% off the usual ticket prices at our featured destinations but suggest you pre-book these on our site where we will also offer a 10% refund on any of the activity bookings, see the "Experiences" tab on the port page.
We can also drop passengers at the River Rats and Raftabout rafting centre. After rafting they will either drop you back in Rotorua City where you can join the shuttle back to Tauranga. We can also now link up with the transfers service for the Rail Cruising operation at Mamaku for those wanting to do the 1pm trip.
If you wish to visit other activities not listed above, then you can often arrange transport to their activity at the Rotorua i-site. These destinations could include:
Agrodome - sheep and farm shows
Agroventures - adventure activities
Buried Village - historic site relating to the 1886 eruption of Mount Tarawera
Hells Gate - geothermal valley and authentic mud bathing experience. Please advise when booking if this destination is required as we can arrange a transfer back to town for you.
Wai-O-Tapu and Waimangu - geothermal sites about 20 minutes south of Rotorua.
- 10% discount on activities
- Comfortable transport
- Full commentary
- Any destination costs
- Any meals
- Join the tour at the Salisbury Avenue port exit gate, look out for the TRG-3 sign.
- The driver will provide details of all destinations served by the Rotorua Explorer and advise the best order to see each destination to make the most of your day.
- The Rotorua Explorer visits 5 drop off and collection points during the day.
- Tours depart at the time shown on the web site unless this conflicts with the ships ETA or ETD, in which case the tour will operate so that you are back in port at least one hour before sailing. Please meet us at least 15 minutes prior to the departure time.
- Child ages are 4 - 14 inclusive.
- If your group is larger than 24 persons then please contact us for a quotation.
- Infants 0 to 3 may travel free of charge if seated on a parents lap. If a seat is required then a child ticket must be purchased.
- Passengers must be able to enter the coach which has 4 steps.
- This tour is not suitable for users of mobility scooters [unless very small collapsible ones] or electric wheelchairs. Folding manual wheelchairs can be accommodated, but passengers must be able to enter a coach or minibus using the standard steps. Our staff can assist.
Standard Tour Schedule Options
|start time||end time|
| Note: Start and end times may be adjusted |
to suit ships ETA or ETD in port
Standard Tour Charges
|Adult price||NZ $99.00|
|Child price (4 to 14 yrs)||NZ $79.00|
|Infant price (0 to 3 yrs)||NZ $79.00|
| Note: Infant ticket ensures a seat |
Without a ticket an infant may have to sit on a parents lap
|Family price (max adults 2 max children 2)||NZ $319.00|
Standard Tour Group Discounts
|11+ persons||10.00 %|
Alan our driver, is an awesome guide. He is a wealth of knowledge, very obliging and nothing is too much trouble. Well done!!!
N & D Devine, Australia [Feb 17]
V & R Preiss, Australia [Feb 17]
M & D Richards, Australia [Mar 17]
M Merck, Australia [Mar 17]
E Dean, Australia [Feb 17]
M Gow, Australia [Feb 17]
M Wiggins, USA [Feb 17]
D & L Preszler, USA [Feb 17]
P & P Loftus, UK [Feb 17]
S Hope, Australia [Feb 17]
S Madex, Australia [Feb 17]
A Mitchell, England [Jan 17]
E Hudson, UK [Jan 17]
S & R Scerri, Australia [Jan 17]
D Norbert, Germany [Dec 16]
B & J Rohl, Canada [Dec16]
S Nahuysen, Australia [Dec 16]
J Brennock, USA [Apr 16]
B Delany, Australia [Mar 16]
G Golden, USA [Feb 16]
D Kennedy, USA [Feb 16]
E Holowaty, Canada [Feb 16]
L Brooks, Australia [Feb 16]
Y Herrington, USA [Dec 15]
S Edwards, Australia [Dec 15]
S Allen, Australia [Oct 15]
E & H Hubner, Germany [Mar 15}
J Henderson, Australia [Feb 15]
M Van Berkel, Switzerland [Feb 15]
K Russell, USA [Dec 14]
S Curran, Australia [Nov14]
P Lowrie, Australia [Nov 14]
K & L, Australia [Mar 14]
H. Ozolins, Australia [Mar 14]
T Cullinan, Australia [Jan 14]
Wendy Young, Australia [Jan 14]
Can I bring more people on the tour than i have booked?
You may be able to add extra persons on the day if we have seats available. Contact us as soon as possible when the ship arrives [we are just outside the port exit gate] and we can then arrange larger or additional vehicles as needed.
What if ship leaves before 5pm
When a ship is arriving or departing at times that do not suit our normal tour times, then we adjust these times to suit. These adjusted times are shown on your voucher when you make a booking and also on the "prices" tab of the tour details on the web site, if you have created a "my cruise" account.
What if the destination I want to visit is not on the shuttle route?
We stop at 5 locations in Rotorua which cover 12 of the main destinations or activities. If you want to visit an alternative desination, the a local shuttle service can be booked at the Rotorua i-site [our 2nd stop] to get you to your destination. Some destinations also offer free trasnfers to and from their location from the i-site.
What if I miss the last pick up time for the shuttle back to the ship.
If this happens it is your responsibility to make your own way back to the ship [allow 75 minutes] but we do list the contact number of local taxis on the tour brochure. Please call ShoreTrips if this occurs as we may also be able to assist with our other tour vehicles in Rotorua.
Can you help pre-booking my activities?
Yes we can arrange bookings and vouchers for any of the destinations and activities in Rotorua. This is worth doing as some activities have limited capacity and by pre-booking you can also miss the ticket office queues. You will still save the 10%.
My group is larger than 24 persons, can you do larger groups?
Yes, most of our tours are small group programs, but we can offer the same tour program in most cases for group bigger than 24 persons, please contact us to obtain a quotation.