Spirit of Adventure

Spirit of Adventure Trust was set up in 1972 by Lou Fisher who had a vision to empower the youth of New Zealand.

The Trust has gained and maintained a reputation in New Zealand as a highly respected youth development organisation providing a unique environment for youth development, where the focus of learning is on team-work, developing skills of communication, self-leadership, self-reliance, self-discipline, self-esteem, resilience, confidence and leadership. Learning to sail a tall ship is only a small part of the programmes offered.

They’ve taken tens of thousands of young New Zealanders on voyages of personal discovery on board our tall ship, Spirit of New Zealand. Although theyre described as a sail training organisation, our main objective is to develop positive qualities in our young people.

Today, Spirit of New Zealand is believed to be the world’s busiest youth ship, sailing around ten months of the year. Subject to stringent, on-going maintenance surveys, refits and audits, Spirit of New Zealand is expected to be able to continue operating youth voyages until around 2035.

Spirit of Adventure is an Accredited Award Provider for the Adventurous Journey Training, Adventurous Journey and Gold Residential sections. Residential: All Spirit of Adventure voyages of more than five-days duration can be counted for the Gold Residential requirements on the understanding that each participant does not know more than one other person on their watch (this restriction does not apply to Adventurous Journeys).

Adventurous Journey: Spirit of Adventure voyages can count towards Adventurous Journey activities. You need to tell your Spirit crew that you are using the trip for your Adventurous Journey section and specify what you want to count it towards. You can only choose two of the following Gold Practice, Gold Qualifier, Gold Residential Project. If you are using a voyage for your practice and qualifier then all Training will be provided on the boat, you no longer need to complete bushcraft training.

If you are using it for your Gold Qualifier and Residential Project your Practice Journey must have been on water. On the Spirit of Adventure, planning is done daily depending on weather. This concession is made, because until the participants are on the ship it is not possible to plan a voyage, as the mode of transport is unique and the weather cannot be predicted accurately enough to plan a voyage.

Group Sizes: On the Spirit of Adventure there are usually 40 young people as crew and they are divided into four watches of ten people, two port and two starboard. Each watch can be counted as an Award group. The understanding is that not all watch members will be Award participants, but they will be in the age range and sufficiently trained for the undertaking by the Spirit of Adventure leaders on board.

Spirit of Adventure Duke of Edinburgh’s Hillary Award sections that can be counted:

5 day ‘Trophy Voyages’
Participants must be year 10 students
Bronze Adventurous Journey: Practice & Qualifier
Must be confident and competent on the water

10 day voyage
Participants must be 16-18 years
Can be counted towards:
• Silver Practice Journey & Qualifying Journey
• Any two of the following: Gold Practice Journey, Gold Qualifying Journey, Gold Residential Project
• Kākāriki Practice & Qualifying Journey
If you are using Spirit of Adventure for both practice and qualifying journeys then training will be provided onboard, no other training is necessary.

You can now complete your Kākāriki Pathway for your Award with Spirit of Adventure Trust. With new environmental focuses the Adventurous Journeys they offer align with the Kākāriki pathway guidelines. You sail in the Hauraki Gulf marine reserve areas and conduct beach cleans, work with University of Auckland to report daily temperature data which helps to feed research and NIWA forecasting models and deploy live bait tank stations to monitor and gather data for Auckland Uni research team on fish and ocean data with comparative modelling as a learning tool. Where possible Spirit of Adventure Trust work with a variety of conservation organisations to take part in activities, like Kiwi release, rat bait station checking and re-baiting and dune weeding.

Vision | Te Whāinga Matua

Respect the land and you have a home, Respect the sea and you have sustenance, Respect the air and you have life, Respect your neighbour and you have a friend, Learn from the SPIRIT and you have a future.

Purpose | Te Koronga

To empower young New Zealanders to reach their full potential through the challenge of the sea.