Alan Langdon and six-year-old daughter found in Ulladulla after weeks at sea

A man and his six-year-old daughter have sailed into Ulladulla four weeks after they were reported missing in New Zealand.

The pair spent 27 days sailing across the Tasman Sea in a 6.4-metre catamaran with a broken rudder, reaching Ulladulla on Wednesday.

Alan Langdon, 46, and his daughter, Que, sparked an international manhunt when they set sail from Kawhia Harbour on New Zealand's North Island on December 17.

Mr Langdon is reportedly in the middle of a custody dispute with Que's mother, Ariane Wyler. She reportedly hired Australian child recovery specialist Col Chapman to search for the pair, having done so once previously.

Mr Chapman told Radio New Zealand in December that Mr Langdon, an Australian citizen with family in New Zealand, was possibly trying to make it back to Australia.

We were always safe, we just couldn't let anyone know.

Alan Langdon

Mr Langdon and Que arrived in Ulladulla Harbour on their catamaran about midday on Wednesday. He played down any potential danger surrounding the voyage, despite the fact that one of the catamaran's rudders broke four days into the journey and he was left to steer with one rudder.

Alan Langdon and his daughter Que. Photo: Supplied /

Alan Langdon and his daughter Que. Photo: Supplied /

“I tell you I learnt a lot about sailing,” he said. 

“Yes we are safe and well. We were always safe, we just couldn't let anyone know.”

After the pair went missing, Ms Wyler said she was confident that nothing had happened to her daughter.

"Que spent her first four and a half years of her life on a 46-foot [14-metre] catamaran. I believe in Alan Langdon and his capabilities as a seagoing person. Now this boat is only 21-foot long. It's fairly small but in some ways it's only a small version of Que's previous home."Our home, the boat Tiki Sanyasin, was totally destroyed during cyclone Pam [of the south Pacific Ocean] on 13 March 2015. Alan, Que and I survived the storm luckily more or less unscathed. It was terrifying and we were separated during the storm."

Ariane Wyler and daughter Que Langdon. Photo: Supplied /

Ariane Wyler and daughter Que Langdon. Photo: Supplied /

Friend and fellow Kawhia resident Mo Shuttleworth said Mr Langdon had saved his daughter's life when his boat went down in the Category 5 tropical storm that struck Vanuatu last year.

"He went underwater with the boat at the time - they were all in the boat at the time and it was sinking."

The incident took a toll on the relationship and the pair later split, he understood.

"They lived on the water and the children were born on the water as well. He was a very get up and go person."

Mary Smith, a woman Mr Langdon and his daughter shared a home with in Kawhia, said she hadn't heard from the pair since she said goodbye to them on December 17.

"They just sailed away on the adventure.

"We're absolutely broken - he is a very experienced sailor but we don't know what makes people tick."

Despite a close relationship, Ms Smith said Mr Langdon had not divulged the path he intended to travel with his daughter.

"He didn't tell me where he was going and he's been with me for five months - that's just him, keeping it close to his chest."

Mr Langdon said he had not been able to make contact with Ms Wyler but was "sure" the authorities had done so.

Mr Langdon said he and his daughter were looking forward to some much needed rest and planned to spend the night in an Ulladulla motel.

When asked about his daughter's wellbeing Mr Langdon said Que was "happy".

"We had plenty of food and saw lots of whales," he said.

Australian Border Force agents have made a port-to-port request for the Langdons to travel north to Port Kembla Harbour.

While reporters were speaking to Mr Langdon, he calmly went about sorting and tidying items on the boat which included almonds, a saucepan, a bodyboard and oars.

Soon after, he left the boat and asked reporters for directions to the local Telstra shop.