Tallship R Tucker Thompson


42 Rankers Reviews

26 Face-to-Face

5 Sailing

7 Boat Cruises

3 Bay of Islands

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The R.Tucker Thompson under full sail
Morning tea, freshly baked scones, jam and cream - Yummm!
Lunch time stopover at beautiful bay
Fun for everyone!


A chance to go sailing on a working tall ship in one of the most beautiful parts of New Zealand, the Bay of Islands. Better still, with profits made from tourism going to support youth development, your day out is going to a good cause!

Catch the breeze and set sail for the day from Russell on board the unique tall ship "R. Tucker Thompson", built in the tradition of 100 year old schooners by local Northlanders. She has sailed the world but today will explore the somewhat calmer seas of the Bay of Islands with you on board.

The design of the "R. Tucker Thompson" is based on the Halibut schooners of the North West American coast, which were considered fast and sea kindly and easily manned. She has a lofty rig of varnished oregon spars. Kwila decks and bulwarks with flashes of brass-work to make her look as she should, a working ship of the 18th century, purposeful and square-shouldered, but with a touch of style and speed.

The day out is an interactive experience, so help set the sails, ride on the bowsprit, climb the rigging; alternatively relax while our crew does the work. You will also enjoy the Devonshire tea freshly baked and brewed in the galley each morning. The ship is spacious and comfortable and the friendly crew makes it a personal experience, often described as the best day of any holiday.

At lunchtime the vessel anchors in a secluded bay. Step ashore, take a swim or try swinging from the yardarm. With all this sea air and activity you'll have a hearty appetite - taken care of by a tasty barbecue lunch cooked on board. Return to Russell this afternoon.
The ship is operated as a not-for profit charitable trust with profits from day sail activities being used to support youth sail training programmes over the New Zealand winter. Operating for over 25 years, the ship is Qualmark approved with a Gold environmental rating.


Feature Value Info


Tallship R Tucker Thompson

Commercial organisation


North IslandNorthlandBay of Islands


  • Sailing
  • Boat Cruises


Showing 8 reviews of 40.

Judith Johnston's avatar

Judith Johnston


Ranking: 10/10

The adventure on the R Tucker was the best day of our holidays. The crew were fun and friendly.....everything about the day was great.

Reviewed over 4 years ago

Tallship R Tucker Thompson responds:

Thank you for your feedback, we're glad it was a highlight of your holidays!

Rodney Turner's avatar

Rodney Turner

Ranking: 10/10

Great friendly crew, passionate about what they do for the kids. I will never forget my time at the helm.

Reviewed over 5 years ago

Tallship R Tucker Thompson responds:

Thank you so much for your kind words. We're delighted you enjoyed your sailing with us.

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Livia and Dave's avatar

Livia and Dave


Ranking: 9/10

Nice day sailing! It was cool to help sail the boat!

Reviewed almost 6 years ago and experienced in January 2016

Tallship R Tucker Thompson responds:

Glad you enjoyed the experience!

Miroslav Bazala's avatar

Miroslav Bazala

United Kingdom

Ranking: 10/10

I did the morning/afternoon trip and it was fantastic. I booked on a last moment to ensure the weather would be great and it was one of the highlights of my holiday in NZ. Something I will never forget, something that stands out and above. Even the way how other explorer boats treat Tallship R Tucker Thompson makes you feel you are being part of something special, perhaps even legendary.

Reviewed about 6 years ago

Tallship R Tucker Thompson responds:

Kia ora and thank you for your review. We aim to create memories so it is wonderful to thing you will take these home with you. We've had plenty of people who have returned 20+ years after sailing with us the first time, so hopefully you will do the same :)

Sivram SD's avatar

Sivram SD


Ranking: 10/10

The team at R Tucker Thompson was very courteous from Day 1. The entire process from smooth from the time of booking.! Loved the experience. Very different from a traditional cruise.
The stop-over at the island was picturesque.!

Reviewed about 6 years ago and experienced in November 2015

Tallship R Tucker Thompson responds:

Thank you very much for giving us your feedback - so pleased that you loved your experience with us, kia ora!

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Liz Ferguson's avatar

Liz Ferguson


Ranking: 10/10

I had an absolutely fantastic time on the Tallship. The crew were professional and friendly, willing to teach for those who wanted to learn and willing to let those who wanted to relax do just that. I think everyone had a chance to do what they wanted to do and have their desired experience. I chose to climb the rigging, help hoist the sails, and use the rope swing to splash in the water, all of which were incredibly fun. The lunch was incredible and I had a thoroughly enjoyable day. Thanks to everyone on the crew!

Reviewed over 6 years ago and experienced in November 2015

Tallship R Tucker Thompson responds:

Delighted you enjoyed your time with us and thank you for your review, kia ora!

Jamie McArthur's avatar

Jamie McArthur


Ranking: 9/10

Great day spent cruising around near Russell. Captain and crew were fantastic, very friendly. Laid back atmosphere was great and food was excellent.

Reviewed about 7 years ago and experienced in January 2015

Tallship R Tucker Thompson responds:

Glad you enjoyed your day with us!

Nina Helmling's avatar

Nina Helmling


Ranking: 10/10

Excellent way to discover the Bay of Islands - enjoy a day of real old style sailing on the Tucker, great crew and swimming.

Reviewed almost 8 years ago and experienced in February 2014