"There aren't many boats in Auckland that I can whole-heartedly recommend, but Ray and Sue's operation is one I have no hesitation in putting my name to."
Mark Kitteridge - EDITOR - NZ FISHING NEWS
About NZ Fishing Safaris
Established by Ray Phillips in 1999, New Zealand Fishing Safaris was one of the first Auckland charter companies to bring fast boats into operation to access Auckland’s fantastic snapper fishing opportunities.
Fast boats means more time fishing - it also means if the snapper fishing is slow in one area you can travel quickly to completely different fishing locations to maximize your snapper fishing opportunities and bring home those snapper for family and friends. Stingray, a brand new 9 metre Westcoaster surveyed for nine pax, was New Zealand Fishing Safaris’ first Auckland charter boat.
Hundreds of Snapper Fishing Trips
After eight years and many hundreds of successful snapper fishing trips, Ray teamed up with Sue Trent. Their plan was to expand on Rays already successful business and streamline bookings and bring new bigger fast charter boats onto the Auckland Harbour.
To satisfy everybody’s snapper fishing needs from individuals to large corporate clients who need to entertain their local or out of town clients with a professional and unique Auckland fishing experience.
Mantaray, launched in 2010, is a fast Bennett aluminium hull powered by a V8 Caterpillar engine surveyed for 15 pax. This is undoubtedly the best medium range charter boat in Auckland, and will be for some time.
High Standard of Fishing Boats
Tracker II was purchased in 2011. This boat is the best fishing platform in Auckland. With a big cockpit, large roomy fully-enclosed flybridge, newly refurbished cabin and luxury kitchen has set a new standard for corporate fishing trips and can accommodate 20 fishing at once, or non-fishing 38 pax plus crew. With Sue managing booking and office administration, and Ray maintaining the boats to a high standard, New Zealand Fishing Safaris has without a doubt, become Auckland’s leading fishing charter operator.
New Zealand Fishing Safaris Crew
In 1999, after an exciting 25 years in the construction industry, Ray was ready for a new challenge. With his aim of setting up a business in the Charter Boat Industry, Ray's first step was to gain valuable seatime working as Deckhand first on well-known boats Kiwi Angler and then Gulf Raider operating out of Whangaparaoa. Ray went on to gain his professional Maritime New Zealand Charter Boat Operators ticket and was ready to bring his love of snapper fishing in Auckland to the general public, armed with a new fast boat with more bells & whistles than was probably healthy! Now, 13 years and hundreds of snapper fishing trips out of Auckland City later, clients can be confident they are with one of the most experienced fishing guides operating the Auckland Harbour and Hauraki Gulf.
Every fish you catch gives as much pleasure as if caught himself, committed to offering knowledgeable advice, help, and encouragement. From the age of five years, Ray spent hours catching sprats off Sandspit Wharf , close to his Snell’s Beach home. Ray always had a fishing rod in hand whilst his father was busy building boats. Says Ray "I am not sure when the fishing bug really kicked in - but maybe it was always there!'
Ray went on to travel the world over the years, collecting a list of exotic fish caught, from Giant Catfish and Bream in Africa, Big Mouth Bass in the USA, Fresh Water Pike in East Germany, Ba (Bass) in the French Atlantic, Alaskan Salmon & Halibut to South Pacific Dogtooth Tuna and GTs (Trevally) – and of course Marlin to Trout in the very best fishing destination in the world - New Zealand.
Lance Paniora - Skipper of MV Mantaray
Lance was born in Auckland before moving north at an early age to Waimamaku, a small settlement in the South Hokianga, Northland. His father was a farmer and Commercial Crayfisherman, spending a lot of time also fishing the West Coast beaches either surfcasting or off the rocks. Thus fishing was in the blood for Lance. After spending time working as Deckhand on the Crayboat, Lance gained enough seatime to attend Maritime New Zealand Training College to gain his Professional Skipper's Ticket in early 2000.
It was then time to go it alone and start his own Fishing Charter Business in Auckland "Smokin' Reels" using a small aluminium boat and his flagship boat aptly named Smokin' Reels!! (Not to be confused with a boat currently on the Auckland Harbour similarly named). During the 9 years of running this business covering the Auckland Harbour and Hauraki Gulf, Lance also spent time fishing the East Coast of New Zealand from Coromandel to the Bay of Islands and Spirits Bay in the Far North. Lance has also great memories of fishing in Fiji, Tonga and Australia.
Now having worked for New Zealand Fishing Safaris since early 2010, Lance has a reputation for being one of the very best Fishing Guides operating out of Auckland, and having a helpful and great sense of humour to match his knowledge of fishing techniques, makes him a very popular member of the New Zealand Fishing Safaris Team.
Tane is a keen fisherman and also is a member of the Torbay Sailing Club where he instructs children on the art of yacht handling. He is currently attending Otago Polytechnic studying Bachelor of Civil Engineering.
Call us on 021 179 9238 for info about our charter boats or email us for fishing boat info.