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A pair of Hector's dolphins

Dolphin Swim

This three hour excursion is perhaps the best way in the world to swim with dolphins. Kaikoura attracts dolphins all year round, hugely increasing the chances of being able to get in the water with these incredible creatures. The excursion leaves twice daily from Kaikoura and takes a maximum of 13 people swimming and 20 watching, making it a more personal experience. Wetsuits are provided and the boats have hot water facilities and complimentary tea and coffee. Full hot showers can be taken back at the Encounter offices. You may also see other marine creatures, such as New Zealand fur seals, and the excursion is often the highlight of people's visits to New Zealand. Kaikoura was the first destination in the world to achieve Green Globe status and Encounter Kaikoura, which runs this excursion, has also been certified in the same scheme, demonstrating its commitment to ongoing environmental improvement and sustainability.

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who's been there

Chris, an Audley Travel specialist

Start planning your tailor-made trip by contacting one of our New Zealand specialists

Other experiences in Kaikoura

These activities are designed to give you the most authentic experiences around where you're staying. We work with local guides, who use their knowledge and often a resident's eye to show you the main sights and more out-of-the-way attractions. Our specialists can suggest tours and activities, such as cooking classes, that will introduce you to the local ways of life.

  • Traditional Maori Hongi Greeting

    Maori Cultural Experience


    This memorable tour brings you close to the Maori community in Kaikoura in a way that is not possible elsewhere in New Zealand. You will spend the day with the family who introduce you to a culture which dates back over 800 years.

  • New Zealand fur seals, Kaikoura

    Swim with Seals in Kaikoura


    One of the best nature activities in New Zealand, swimming with wild New Zealand fur seals in Kaikoura is a truly unique experience.

  • Sperm whale, Kaikoura

    Whale Watching


    The local company we use who operate these boats which head out to see the whales as they come up for air, has been running trips for over 20 years and has won many awards in that time. The whole experience is not just exhilarating, but also highly educational and focused on the preservation of the marine environment.