White Island Rendezvous

4.5 out of 5 stars4.5 Stars

15 The Strand E, Whakatane, Bay of Plenty, New Zealand

3 Reviews

White Island Rendezvous
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Satisfaction Excellent
Very Good

Value Score Poor Value

Costs 22% more than similarly rated 4.5 star hotels

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  • Families93
  • Couples87
  • Solo100
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  • pedroswift's Profile Photo

    Handy starting spot for volcano visit


    We were very happy with our choice to book into the White Island Rendezvous Hotel/Motel the night before our anticipated boat trip to the active volcano on White Island.
    We managed to secure a unit without booking ahead and found that it met our requirements re comfort cleanliness, facilities and price (NZ$130).
    The ensuit studio room had a queen sized bed plus a single and had a kitchenette complete with microwave oven, refrigerator, toaster, kettle and cooking/eating utensils and dining table which was handy for our self-catered breakfast. The unit had all the expected equipment like heaters, iron, ironing board and hair dryer. For those having nothing better to do, Sky Television is available. Although we did not use it, wireless internet is available in all rooms.

    Unique Quality: The room was quiet and car parking was right outside the door. Adjacent to the motel office is a coffee and gift shop. The office provides a booking service for the PeeJay White Island Tour and the motel owners own the catamaran doing the trip. The motel also runs a shuttle service for passengers originating in Rotorua. Office open from 6:30am – 10pm.
    We were very happy to find the Whakatane Sportsfishing Club conveniently located across the road an ideal spot for an afternoon sundowner drink and dinner later in the evening.

    Directions: Along the waterfront drive beside the river.
    approx Lat&Long: 37º56'59.30"S ; 177º00'08.00"E

  • WStat's Profile Photo

    a superb choice !


    Although rather modernistic looking, the new "White Island Rendezvous Motel & Tours" is a good deal. Situated by the lagoon on the Strand, opposite the Whakatane Wharf and -Restaurant, it offers very nice , large and luxurious rooms equipped with some extra amenities like heated blankets, the usual coffe- and teamakers and ensuite kitchen and bathrooms as well as balconies or terraces.
    Downstairs the family-owned tour-agency (offering excellent and interesting tours to White Island) and, above all, "Jay`s Cafe" (not only a simple cafe, but a smashing little restaurant with superb breakfasts) are situated

    Unique Quality: Location, rooms and restaurant are far above average ! Good advice offered at the Tour-Agency

  • margaretvn's Profile Photo

    great hotel and check in place.


    On the strand, this hotel is owned by the White Island tour operators and it is also where you check in for the White Island trip which is handy.

    Unique Quality: Great quiet rooms, BBQ area, tasty coffee shop and friendly people.

    Directions: on the sea front just after the roundabout.

More about White Island Rendezvous

great hotel and check in place.

by margaretvn about White Island Rendez-Vous

On the strand, this hotel is owned by the White Island tour operators and it is also where you check in for the White Island trip which is handy Great, quiet rooms, BBQ area, tasty coffee shop and friendly people.

White Island volcano trip

by Kate-Me

"Boat trip to White Island with Pee Jays adventures"

White Island is a large submarine volcano 150,000 – 200,000 years old, NZ’s most active volcano.
Located: 49 km north of Whakatane, in the Bay of Plenty. The volcano’s height reaches 321 metres above sea level, but its full height from the sea floor is about twice that. Only a small % of the island is above the sea. The underwater base of the volcano is 16 km x 18 km, but only about 2.4 x 2 km is visible.
Sulphur used to be mined commercially on the island, but eruptions and part of the crater wall collapsing resulted in several deaths (at least 10 miners working on the island in 1914) and led to mining ceasing in 1933. I believe the last time it erupted was 1998. More scientific info: http://www.gns.cri.nz/what/earthact/volcanoes/nzvolcanoes/newwhitei.html

The island has been left to nature since then, and is actually privately owned by the Buttle family – who agreed the island could become a private scenic reserve (with a part of each visitor’s tour cost going to them as a fee – I believe it’s quite a lot in fact)
Our tour was $175 ea for the 6 hours – my husband considers it worth it.

Those who suffer seasickness beware though!
Tour begins at White Island Rendezvous (their hotel/base/giftshop etc)

The island takes about 2 hours to get reach (cruising at 19 knots) but for me it felt like forever (since I was thoroughly seasick) and I would have said it was more like 100 kms than 50 ....on and on you go.
On the way you pass Whale Island (remains of a dormant volcano 7 kms offshore).

Finally we arrive at the island and get into a motorised inflatable launch for the transfer to what’s left of the jetty, and disembark onto some easy to clamber over rocks.

Sometimes they see dolphins & whales but we saw neither, though did spot 2 large seals on rocks as we were circumnavigating White Island .

We spent 2 hours exploration of the island, literally following in the footsteps of the guides. Our group of about 60 was split into 3, each with 2 guides, and off we went.

You wear a safety helmet and carry a gas mask around your neck (in case you are walking through vent fumes and might have trouble breathing – depends which way the wind is blowing – this wasn’t much of an issue for us)
There’s no wandering off. Safety is strictly observed….a freak eruption COULD happen – we are warned of this and told what to do if there’s a collapse or avalanche, but keeping our distance as we did from actual fumaroles (vents of quick, powerful hissing, escaping steam/smoke) I didn’t ever feel ‘unsafe’. The guide also makes you avoid walking anywhere where they know the crust is brittle and there’s a risk of falling through or sinking (a couple of people on our tour walked maybe 1 mt off course and sank almost up to the top of their shoes in grey, gooey mud…fortunately the guide picked up on this quick enough to stop the rest of us following in those footsteps and also sinking.
It really does feel like you’re walking on the moon…..a dead landscape (at least on the side of the island where you land and walk) – nothing alive, walking on loose ash and rock - nothing alive but the fumaroles, bubbling lake, and tiny rivulet creeks of water (no doubt mixed with a dose of sulphur too). The smell of sulphur/eggs is quite bad, but no worse than at Rotorua, and you soon get caught up in following the guides and listening to their informative commentary about the geology and also the history of the island.

The scenes are colourful – the different tones of sulphur and mud, the white water in the little rivulets, the green bubbling lake…. it’s not just grey ash at all.

-to-date images of the island (from its web cams) can be viewed hourly at www.geonet.org.nz

After we got back on board, while waiting for the other 2 tour groups from our boat to be ferried back via the launch, a packed lunch began to be served. And what was on the menu for lunch? None other than egg sandwiches! I tell you, after being sick for 2 hours and then walking around 2 hours on a fascinating island which however smells of rotten eggs, the last thing you want to eat is egg sandwiches! (Never mind, all part of the adventure, I guess).

On the way back to Whakatane, we did a complete circumnavigation of the island....to see vegetation and grass and nesting birds on the other side was amazing! Completely different to the side where we landed, and no sign of bubbling mud or fumarolles here at all!

Whakatane - starting point for White Island

by vtveen

Whakatane is a small town in the Bay of Plenty. It has some nice shops and restaurants in the main street.

But by far the most important of the town is the possibility of taking a guided boat tour to White Island.

See also my White Island page and travelogues.


White Island, allways steamingWhite Island, allways steaming

White Island: steam and mudWhite Island: steam and mud

White Island..the moon!White Island..the moon!

fumarolles on white Islandfumarolles on white Island

Forum Posts

How do u plan your self-drive trip?

by lilly1975

I'll visit North Island in April. Unfortunately, we've only 5 nights. We'll arrive Auckland on April 11 - 10.45AM and depart on April 16 - noon. After gathering infor., I'm interested in Coromandel Peninsula, Rotorua, Lake Taupo, and of course Auckland, and plan to set driving route according to these places.

My question is how do u plan your self-drive trip? by yourself, tour agent, or car rental company? I also want details map of driving route to each city and hotels. Can you recommend good tour agents who can arrange the trip for me?


RE: How do u plan your self-drive trip?

by Deus_ultima

Our last rental car came with a GPS. All we needed to do was tell it where we wanted to go and it gave us directions all the way.

RE: RE: How do u plan your self-drive trip?

by lilly1975

Deus_ultima, thanks! Can you recommend me what car rental company?

RE: RE: How do u plan your self-drive trip?

by Deus_ultima

Hertz or any company they have there..just ask if they have a GPS in option.

RE: RE: How do u plan your self-drive trip?

by vtveen

Just buy a map. Be sure what you want to do and DRIVE along scenic routes all over the country.
Nothing to worry. Coromandel (see my page) has more or less one loop road, from Coromandel to Rotorua depends on what you want to see. I would recommend driving along the Ocean with Mt. Maunganui (perhaps Papamoa Beach) and Whakatane with a visit to White Island (see my page).
Rotorua to Taupo again more or less one road, between these places a couple of wonderful thermal spots: Wai-o-Tapu and Orakei Korako.
Have fun


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 White Island Rendezvous

We've found that other people looking for this hotel also know it by these names:

White Island Rendezvous Whakatane

Address: 15 The Strand E, Whakatane, Bay of Plenty, New Zealand