We are looking for a circumnavigator!  JOIN EXPLORER NOW

What we are looking for

Want to be a VOLUNTEER? Living and working to help establish our Marine Discovery Centre and Yacht Club? We are looking for fun people NOW! It all starts end of June, just as the whales arrive off the beach!

If you want to make a permanent new life on the island forever, becoming a project manager for the next three years and then building your own home on the island, we would be happy to speak with you!

Nomuka IKI is now the home of McIntyre Adventure, the Royal Nomuka Yacht Club (RNYC) and the Marine Discovery Centre.

This opens up all sorts of opportunities for passionate people to become involved in different ways and help us with this dream. WE have a new support boat EXPLORER, our 2012, Luxuary Lagoon 450 Charter catamaran! WHALESAILTONGA is now operational and Explorer is the support boat for our island Nomuka IKI and the Marine Discovery Centre.

In the years ahead we are setting up a Clam Farm, a Sandalwood plantation, a community Pearl farm, the Marine Discovery Center and building some PUDDLE DUCK RACERS and 6.5meter Vakas at the RNYC to train Tongans in sailing. Our survey and marine salvage efforts are on hold for now as we concentrate of establishing island infrastructure.

The Marine Discovery Centre (MDC) has appointed two new directors Patrick Smallhorn-West and Sophie Gordon to join Jane and I and Siua Tai -Joshua as we start the next four year plan on Nomuka IKI in the Kingdom of Tonga. HRH the Crown Prince of Tonga was excited about these new appointments. Support subscriptions will be offered from July 1st 2017. Patrick and Sophie will both take leading rolls with the MDC over the next four years as we focus on Marine Biodiversity and Coral Reef Health throughout Tonga. Both will undertake PHD studies in Tonga with the support of the MDC. Building joint relationships with research institutions in Australia, New Zealand and China are a priority in the next 12 months and early indications suggest an exciting future. WE also hope to colaborate with the University of the South Pacific and will partner with the 2018 Golden Globe Race to highlight the importance of Coral Reef and Marine Diversity to the health of our oceans. It is hoped to commence local educational programs and snorkelling field trips this calendar year for Nomuka students.

If you would like to become involved and help deliver some of those programs, assist with building the PUDDLE DUCK RACERS sailing boats . the first 6 mtr x 6 mtr research laboratory, or our temporary Yacht Club on Nomuka IKI, even assisting with training students to snorkel then taking students on the snorkel trails etc, we would love to hear from you.

All you need to do is get to the island and join us with the team of local Tongans we are employing to do amazing things! Of course when the weather turns good we may even head out to fish, dive, surf and sail, but in 2017, our focus is on having fun and setting up infrastructure on the island. Whales off the beach and we may go see them!

2017 Volunteer Vacancies

Here is a list of volunteer positions below. Each has a different set of experiences and expectations on offer.

There is a simple application process if you are interested in joining our small team on the Island this season. It costs nothing as long as you are staying for at least a month. Just fill out the application form. Blue Base team volunteers will be remembered in years to come when we are fully set up and can offer big discounts. Nomuka IKI is going to become one of those special places on this big blue marble.

Here is the work program for 2017:

  • Set up camp, erect store tent and camp kitchen, toilets & solar showers, solar power systems, desalinator and water tanks, dive boats , mooring systems and dive compressors.
  • Erect Temporary Yacht Club 6mtr x 12 mtr engineered hospital tent. Build 6 x 6mtr Marine Discovery Centre lab and workshop, Build 6 x 6 mtr accommodation cabin.
  • Build solar powered electric and wire Cattle Fence and then commence establishing food gardens.
  • Establish and mark out new Nomuka IKI No take zone and new Specially managed area for Clam Farm and establish first 1000 Clams.
  • Build four Puddle Duck Racers and commence junior sailing program on Nomuka
  • Train Nomuka students to snorkel, deliver basic reef education program then take them snorkelling in the SMA.

2017 Volunteer Vacancies – phone and internet on the beach!


You are first onto the beach to set up Blue Base camp site and start the build process for MDC cabin. Then it is the Caretakers Cabin! The plan is to employ a crew of Tongan laborers from the island of Nomuka who will travel across every day. We hope to have extra skilled advisors (maybe you?), workers, camp cook and managers, plumber, carpenters, electrician, to keep life fun and organized. The work program begins around late-June 2017 and now goes on for the next few years. Bring your own drinks and toys but we will feed you if you are staying for more than a month…come for 6 months and we will love you! WE work for five days a week then play.


Ever built a plywood boat or a stich and glue boat?? Spot for one or two to assist the building program of www.pdracer.com then there are James Wharram Tahiti Wayfarer ethnic designs to be built in 2018. You will be training two or three young Nomukans timber boat building skills at the same time. Facilities are basic but all the tools are there on the island. From mid June to Mid November…Living on Blue Base.


Hopefully a couple? There will be lots of work and fun but we will have one couple co-ordination life and fun on the island.. from day one- late June and stick around till early December so nearly six months or longer if you like? Living on Blue Base.

SUMMER CARETAKERS – 6 months on the island

A couple! The ultimate Island to oneself adventure getaway! Caretakers may well have the island to themselves except maybe for the nesting turtles and birds. Yes you will be looking after the Cabins, doing little jobs, maintaining food gardens and equipment and having a grand adventure living the dream. Let your mind run wild thinking about this…a very special opportunity, just get your own food from the garden or the shop on Nomuka or off the twice weekly ferry. Sign on Mid November 2017 through to Mid April 2018. A life changing experience maybe! This opportunity is available every year, so get your name on the list ASAP. Preference will be given to previous volunteers on the island. Living in Caretakers cabin. You will both need a fist aid certificate. Internet and phone OK.


Unfortunately during 2017, all activities on Nomuka IKI are focused on setting up for the future, so there are no opportunities to offer adventure holidays on the island but stay tuned for 2018.

We are looking for people with Passion and Commitment to join us. You must love the world we live in, believe in living life, having fun and getting the job done with a can do attitude. If you have a sense of adventure and can work as part of a team we are waiting for your call. See the questions on the PDF download form below and send it in.

If you want to dive while on the island, you must hold a current first aid qualification, be minimum open water diver and have Dan Diver insurance. We always dive safe, to a plan and conservatively. Everyone on the island must have travel insurance, a credit card and undergo a simple medical. You will make your own way to Nuku Alofa in Tonga then organise your visa extension, (first Month is free..then AU$50 per month) so figure on about two or three days for that. Then board the Ferry to Nomuka which leave every Monday night.

While on Nomuka IKI camping in Blue Base, we all assist with cooking, cleaning and get the job done. We play often and accept that life should be fun and never be taken too seriously. We laugh a lot and expect the unexpected at any time. While we have objectives, we must “go with the flow” with no fixed itinerary or expectation. We do things the “Tongan way”. This entire operation is an adventure with plenty of unknown outcomes, which is what makes it so interesting. So if you are up for it, we would love to hear from you. Come with the right attitude and be prepared to have a go and you will likely have one of the most unique experiences of your life with the greatest bunch of people.

All crew involved will sign an Indemnity form.

Look forward to hearing from you and THANKS!!!…Don and Jane.