Riverside Drive Marina Haulout and Hardstand
Riverside Drive Marina is a hardstand, haul out, complete working marina nestled in the sheltered waters of the Hatea River just minutes from downtown Whangarei. Riverside Drive Marina has been operating the since 1976. Blending know how and experience together, the team offer a comfortable, affordable home base for your stay in New Zealand. Reservations are accepted for those wanting to plan ahead.
Convenient on site marine services, floating berths, numerous marina amenities, and a short walk to town make the decision to stay at RDM an easy choice. For many yachties, it becomes a place to make boat repairs and re-energize before continuing their journey.
A word of caution though, some have found the peaceful lifestyle at Riverside Drive Marina and the stunning beauty of New Zealand a hard place to leave.
Open Bascule Bridge
To reach us you will need to pass under or through Te Matau ā Pohe, our new opening bridge. While many vessels will be able to pass under the bridge without requiring the bascule (lifting platform) to be raised, vessels over 6.5 meters in height will need to phone or radio a request to bridge control to see if the bridge needs to be lifted.
Vessels waiting can tie up to Pontoons either side of the bridge.
Use VHF CHANNEL 18 or by phone call to “Bridge Control” to request to lift and to obtain instructions. Telephone 09 438 7261 or 021 401 752.
There is no charge for this service.
The bridge will not operate in gale force wind conditions.
The bridge has two schedules, one for summer and one for winter.
The summer schedule begins when daylight saving begins in October and will finish when daylight saving ends in April.
• Summer weekdays: 8:45am to 4:00pm and 5:30pm to 8:00pm (excludes the 7:15 to 8:45am and 4:00 to 5:30pm peak traffic periods)
• Summer Weekends: 6:00am to 9:00pm
• Winter weekdays: 8:45am to 4:00pm
• Winter weekends: 8:00am to 6:00pm
• After hours: Outside of normal manned opening hours the service will be an on-call opening service. Skippers are encouraged to make a booking to avoid waiting.
During normal hours we would have a target response time of 5 minutes for the bridge to be opened from the time that a skipper makes their request.
After hours the on-call will have a target response time of 30 minutes for the bridge to be opened from the time that they make their request. Where a booking is made, the target response time shall be within 5 minutes of the time of their booking (subject to the vessel arriving on time).
One way passage only
Preference to incoming / outgoing vessels varies daily and preference will be indicated by Bridge Control.
Wait for permission from Bridge Control on VHF 64 before proceeding and watch for GO instruction on the signage.
Channel width between wooden marker piles 16.0m
Channel depth between wooden marker piles 1.0m below Chart Datum
Vertical clearance above MHWS level when bridge is closed 7.5m to underside of bridge
There are pontoons either side to tie up to if needed.
The Bridge has been named “Te Matau a Pohe” – translated as ‘The fishhook of Pohe’ the Maori chief who welcomed the first English settlers to Whangarei.
Out and about town
Your sailing adventures have taken you and your crew to gorgeous places with spectacular scenery and unforgettable sunsets. Yet all the while the to-do list has grown longer and longer.
Boat maintenance and repairs top the list, but there’s the land business that has been accumulating as well – dental and doctor appointments, travel arrangements, computer repairs, and on and on.
Once your boat is tucked safely in at RDM, you’ll be free to explore Whangarei on foot or by car.
Some cruisers purchase cars, others do not. Staying at RDM makes getting around without a car a viable option since it is so close to town.
Before starting out with your to-do list in hand, pick up a copy of the Whangarei Marine Services and Facilities Guide from the marina office. The booklet has business listings and a town map. An easy 10-15 minute walk takes you to the centre of Whangarei, Northland’s largest town (46,000).
Some of the businesses you may find helpful are:
- Grocery stores – three in the area
- Doctors, dentists, pharmacies
- Post office
- Banks with ATM machines
- Hardware stores
- Used book stores
- Clothing stores
- Yoga classes
- Fresh fruit and vegetable markets
- Aquatic Centre – exercise equipment, pool, spa, sauna, water aerobics
Ready for some hiking or land travel? Talk to the experts at The Hub Information Centre at the Town Basin. They are eager to answer questions and have maps and travel brochures for the North and South Islands. Further out of town is the Whangarei i-SITE Visitor’s Centre.
Find everything you need to plan a short weekend getaway or longer excursions around the islands. Be sure and pick up the Whangarei District Council brochure that describes the hikes within easy reach of the city.
Another brochure published by the Department of Conservation describes hikes in the coastal forests, hill country, and the beach shorelines of the surrounding area.
If you’re looking for somewhere to call home during your visit to New Zealand or just cruising by exploring the coastal waters, Riverside Drive Marina is the place to stay. You’ll find this true for many reasons, the first being size. RDM is large enough to understand the needs of international yachts, and yet small enough to receive personal attention and a daily greeting from Karl and staff. The marina has 30 floating berths each with water and electricity.
Another reason, yachties choose RDM is location. The marina is fourteen miles up the Hatea River where it is quiet, comfortable, and well protected. Since it is only a short walk to the centre of Whangarei you won’t need a car. It is just minutes to the shopping district where you’ll find a warm welcome from the marine industry and the community at large.
RDM has become a gathering spot for international boaters. Take the opportunity to catch up with friends you have met along the way and connect with new ones for the adventures that lay ahead. The marina has a covered patio and barbeque area for impromptu gatherings, planned dinners, and holiday celebrations. Other amenities include:
- Wireless internet available at your boat
- Laundry room with washers and dryer
- Showers and toilets
- Pay phone reserved just for RDM residents
- Phone cards available in marina office
- Book share
- Fax and photocopies
- Mail service – use marina address to receive mail
- Phone messages – marina office will take messages
- Off-street car park
- 24 Hour Recorded Digital Surveillance for your security
- 240v electricity with 110v transformers for rent
- Rubbish removal and recycling
- Pump out station
- Watermans World are suppliers of paddleboards and accessories
- Onsite organic fairtrade cafe KAFE
Let’s hope you like the colour green and all its varied hues because New Zealand is known for its remarkable landscapes. The area surrounding Riverside Drive Marina is no exception. Parks border the marina on either side. One has swings and picnic tables, and the other park is a good spot for walking or jogging. Across the street is a tree-lined residential area and the Parihaka Scenic Reserve, which has river walks and hiking trails that wind through Kauri trees and native forests.
A reasonably priced motel is adjacent to the marina and several others are within walking distance. Yachties have found that staying in the motel is a welcome alternative to living on the boat while in the yard for repairs. The motel is also perfect for visiting guests with the Whangarei airport just a fifteen minute drive from the marina.