For the six of us who were part of the Kermadec scientific team (Tom, Ged, Malcolm, Vincent, Richie and myself) we feel as if we’re back home, while the eight newbies are quickly getting the hang of the boat and its layout.

Skipper Matt Jolly has given us the all-important skipper’s briefing – a low-down on the boat and all its safety equipment, and the most important thing of all: how to flush the toilets (or heads, if we’re being properly nautical). Boat toilets are always trickier than any other kind, and nothing ruins a trip at sea faster than a toilet that is not working, so it’s good to get the official instructions.

Moving on … as we journey towards the Kings I thought I would introduce you to two members of the team that already have a history with these remote islands. In fact between them underwater photographer Ian Skipworth and NIWA scientist Malcolm Francis have visited them 12 times and they’re very keen to get back there.


Before signing off I’m sharing the view that faced us this afternoon. This photo makes me very, very happy! Why? Because the sea doesn’t come any calmer than this, and a mirror-like sea is great for everyone’s stomachs. We’ve made our way up the east coast, with the northern Bay of Plenty to our left (or should that be on the port side?), while out to the right Mayor Island was looking clear and striking. We’ve seen flying fish jumping, Charlie the cook served up a delicious lunch, the sun has been shining and everyone onboard has been getting to know one another and talking about their plans for the trip.

If this is a sign of things to come, I can’t wait for tomorrow.

Smooth sailing - a welcome sight on the first leg of the journey to the Three Kings
Smooth sailing – a welcome sight on the first leg of the journey to the Three Kings


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10 Responses to “Introducing a couple of seasoned Three Kings Islands-goers”

  1. Jacqui's class

    Hi everyone on board,

    What did you eat last night?
    Do flying fish swim in schools or are they on their own? And have you spotted any more today?
    What other fish have you seen so far?

    We hope that the water is still calm for you guys.
    Jacqui’s class

  2. Chander's class

    What was the delicious dinner?-Jim
    How far have you traveled so far?-Xavier
    Have you found any new kind of fish or coral?-Jasmine and Joshua
    Have you been scuba diving?-Spencer
    Which of the islands are you going to go first?-Destin

  3. Melanie Cooper

    Thanks for your great questions. We’re going to ask the scientists right now and they can start working on them while the ship carries on towards the Three Kings Islands. The water is still really nice and calm so they’re very happy with the journey so far – calm waters mean people are far less likely to get sea sick! Should have some answers for you by this afternoon.

  4. Anne's Class

    Hi from Anne’s Class

    How long did it take you to get to the Three Kings Islands? Did anyone get sea sick?
    What do you do in your free time?
    Have you seen any schools of fish? What kind?
    What did you do when you first got to the Island?

    Look forward to hearing from you!

    Ps Did you eat fish for dinner? Lol :)

  5. Jonathan

    Hi there. I am nearly 4 years old and my favourite animal is the killer whale. Have you seen any @ the three kings islands? We are at Auckland museum and the team said to ask you. I like your photo of the humpback whales!

  6. Ayesha's class

    Hello from Ayesha’s class.

    We hope your trip is going well and the water is still mirror like.

    We have a few questions for you:
    Have you seen any whales or dolphins on your trip so far?
    Do you guys miss home yet?
    Has anyone been sea sick yet?
    What’s it like on the boat?
    Are you rocking back and forth in your cabins a lot?
    Is the sailing still smooth today?
    What did you have for dinner last night?
    Is your living situation comfortable? Do you have to share rooms?

    We hope you have a nice trip and that you find some new species. :)


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