December 9, 2010
We recently had the privilege of meeting the legendary Glenn Tipton and his lovely family who joined us for a relaxing week of sailing and fishing north of the Bay of Islands. He is not at all how we imagined a Heavy Metal rockstar to be although admittedly we had no experience to go on.
He is the nicest guy just wanting to hang out in beautiful surroundings and try his hand at fishing in New Zealand for our delicious snapper.
We were able to introduce him to our fabulous Northland coastline and explore the pristine waters of the Karikari Peninsular before sailing south to Whangaroa Harbour where we enjoyed New Years Eve together at Kingfish Lodge.
At the Cavalli Islands the family was able to sample paua (abalone) crayfish and scallops before sailing back to the Bay of Islands.
The evenings were a hoot with numerous hilarious games being played by all bringing to mind the saying about “ those that play together stay together”.
September 1, 2008
July in New Zealand is not ideal for pleasant sailing so when offered the opportunity to skipper a large sailing catamaran for her French /Tahitian owner in New Caledonia, we jumped at the chance. A great way to checkout the tropical cruising grounds while being paid to do so.
Cool Change was left on her secure mooring in the Bay of Islands as we winged our way north to Noumea in New Caledonia. Here we boarded the luxurious catamaran Vahini Piti which was to become our home for the next two weeks. We were joined by the French speaking owner with his family and guests including a delightful local couple as guides.
The temperatures were pleasantly warm and not unlike our NZ summers.
We had planned to cruise north to Ouvea in the Loyalty Island Group but unfortunately a couple of depressions put paid to that so instead we sailed south to the Isle of Pines.
We later discovered those two depressions had intensified severely as they approached New Zealand and had caused considerable damage. Fortunately Cool Change was not affected.
We spent the rest of our time exploring the area with our guides and their local knowledge.
Humpback whales were frequently spotted as well as turtles in the turquoise waters. A nice tuna was landed giving us sashimi for several days. Coral reefs make navigating difficult as the nicest anchorages are often through shallow passes. This made us appreciate the ability of a catamaran to negotiate through such areas as opposed to a keeled boat.
Cool Change will relish the place with her shallow water ability to lift her rudders and propellers out of harms way. We are back in NZ again and helping a friend complete a refit on his boat and working on marketing our charter business for next season in the Bay of Islands. We have agreed to work another two weeks in New Caledonia so will be flying back to Noumea in September. Tough, but somebody has to do it !
Next NZ winter ??? Who knows?
Maybe a cruise in Cool Change to Canada to see the grandkids and our Canadian cruising buddies…….
- Island Beachcombing in New Caledonia
August 3, 2008
Your Cool Change sailing adventure allows you to explore some of the 144 islands in the bay of Islands. Check out isolated beaches and lush, uninhabited islands. Enjoy island and bush hikes, with spectacular cliff top views.
Observe the unique bird and marine life in this special region. Lay on the spacious trampolines or enjoy the seats on each bow. Often we encounter dolphins that love to play below.
Swim or snorkel from the easily accessed swimming platforms on Cool Change, or take the inflatable dinghy ashore and swim from the beach.
Use our stable kayaks to explore the rocky shorelines.
August 3, 2008
Workups of seabirds including gulls, terns, gannets, petrels and shearwaters give an indication of extensive fish activity below the surface. It’s always fun to trawl a lure through the frothing waves and usually kahawai or even kingfish are snared.
Try your hand at a bit of fishing during your cruise. Rods and bait are available, and if you are successful, the catch can be prepared for you to take home, or we can cook it for you on the BBQ.
July 16, 2008
What an amazing first full summer season we have had !
When we were building Cool Change here in the Bay of Islands, we never dreamed how popular she would be. The free-standing rotating wing masts have proven to be a real point of difference and give the clients a real buzz when they take a turn at the wheel.
We have had steady private day trips all summer but also several wedding parties and business groups as well as some great family holidays.
Later in the summer Northland experienced unusual Easterly winds and rain with swells along the coast so we were able to again appreciate the sheltered aspect of the Bay of Islands. There is always a sheltered bay to be found, but we were able to enjoy brisk sailing as well.
May 22, 2008
This trip, we spotted a lone seal basking on the rocks near Deep Water Cove.
Seals are very rarely seen this far north but he was very well camouflaged so it is possible there are more around. We’ll just have to keep our eyes open around that area.
February 16, 2008
Comments from guests who have had their weddings aboard Cool Change:
“We just wanted to thank you both for making our Wedding Day perfect. The Cool Change is a fabulous boat & you were wonderful hosts. Everyone enjoyed the day immensely & maybe one day we could come back & do a cruise with you !
P.s. The food was fantastic too, please pass on our thanks to the caterers.”
Gayle & John Watson, Perth, Scotland.
“Thank you once again for everything you did for our wedding day. You both were excellent hosts to our guests & us and we will never forget how at ease you made us all feel. Cool Change is an awesome catamaran. Please come visit us some time.”
A happy couple, Auckland, NZ
January 10, 2008
Over the Xmas New Year period a family of youthful Grandparents, their daughters and spouses with their two toddlers sailed with us up the coast to Cape Karikari where we enjoyed 8 days of brilliant weather, excellent diving and fishing with continual supplies of every kind of seafood.
Each evening the babies enjoyed bath time in Cool Change’s lounge ! An inflatable swimming pool was blown up and filled with warm bath water. Fun for all !
One of the young Mums was due to have her second child two weeks after we sailed, but our original concern about being so far away from emergency assistance proved unfounded and she delivered her son three weeks after their holiday.
Congratulations Ngaire and Marty !
January 2, 2008
Comments from satisfied Cool Change customers:
“In a lifetime of travel I cannot remember a more perfect day. Don & Marilyn define Kiwi Hospitality & “Cool Change” couldn’t be more memorable.”
Lisa & David Kruse, Berkeley, California, USA.
“Had a great time. Thank you both so much.”
Pat & Tina Farber, Laguna Beach, CA 92651
Dear Don and Marilyn,
We had a fabulous holiday in NZ and Australia, and we just wanted to thank you both for such a wonderful time on Cool Change. We heard that Tom Cruise and family were on a luxury catamaran in the Bay of Islands shortly after us, hope it was with you !
All the very best, you both deserve it.
Love Jane and Mike Donoghue, UK