5 star rating: Highly Recommended 14 Reviews

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  • Location:Akaroa, New Zealand
  • Duration:2 hours (approx.)

Akaroa Harbour Nature Cruise

Experience majestic scenery and stunning wildlife, including Hector’s dolphins, blue penguins and birdlife, on a narrated 2-hour Akaroa Harbour cruise. Ride a spacious luxury catamaran with prime views of the harbor’s sea caves and volcanic cliffs. Your skipper stops at a salmon farm in Lucas Bay and takes you past a New Zealand fur seal colony at Seal Bay. 


  • 2-hour Akaroa Harbour cruise by luxury catamaran to see the worlds smallest and rarest dolphin, the Hector's dolphin
  • See fur seals as you cruise past Seal Bay
  • Stop at Lucas Bay to see a salmon farm
  • Stunning scenery and plenty of photo opportunities
  • Fully narrated by knowledgeable skipper

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Akaroa Harbour Nature Cruise

Akaroa Harbour Nature Cruise

Departing from Akaroa's main wharf, board a modern 60-foot (18-meter) catamaran to explore the natural wonders of Akaroa Harbour during your 2-hour cruise. The luxurious vessel provides plentiful inside seating on its two decks for uninterrupted viewing of landmarks such as Akaroa Lighthouse.

Sip complimentary coffee and tea as you listen to live narration by the skipper, who has extensive knowledge of Akaroa Harbour. Pass sheer volcanic cliffs and sea caves such as Cathedral Cave, and see the breathtaking volcanic amphitheater of Scenery Nook.

Encounter wildlife such as white-flippered penguins, the smallest penguin in the world, and spot New Zealand fur seals basking on the rocks at Seal Bay. Sight inquisitive Hector’s dolphins, also known as New Zealand dolphins, whose calves can be seen between October and March.

Make a stop at at a salmon farm in Lucas Bay, pass a colony of spotted shags, and glimpse other seabirds including cormorants, white-fronted terns and occasionally gannets, petrels and albatross, before your cruise returns to the wharf.

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Customer Reviews

5 star rating: Highly Recommended June 2015

This was an amazing trip. We saw heaps of sea life and the tour guide was full of local knowledge. I would highly recommend this trip for anyone visiting Akaroa

5 star rating: Highly Recommended February 2015

What a magic cruise. We arrived on our cruise ship and boarded our nature cruise - conveniently located on the same wharf as the tender boats. The harbour is a magic place and seeing it from the water was breathtaking. The fact that the weather was perfect - with little wind - sunny skies and aqua water helped. Our skipper - Julian - was exceptional!! Providing informative and interesting commentary and making sure people on both sides of the boat were able to see the little dolphins. This is another tour that I'd highly recommend - two hours just flew.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2015

Loved this trip and we saw everything we wanted.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended March 2014

Definitely worth the price and offered a beautiful view of the Harbor. Captain was knowledgable and we were able to see dolphins as depicted in the photo. Suggest private walking tour of Akaroa using tourist info headphones and map as we'll. inexpensive

Joseph W

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2014

The wind was blowing a gale and the seas very rough but it was a good little cruise. Not many dolphins but we saw seals on the rocks and a pair of penguins

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2012

Unfortunately, our cruise was cancelled when we arrived on the dock on our day as the waters were considered too rough and high winds. I rate the cruise a 5 star anyway as I know it would have been great.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2012

Black cat were brilliant due to traffic problems we arrived late and they put us on the swim with dolphin cruise instead. we had wonderful views of hectors dolphins and penguins swimming alongside boat for almost the entire trip.would recommend this company for both harbour cruise and swim with dolphins.

Chris Hord

5 star rating: Highly Recommended May 2011

Akaroa Harbour is a very nice place to visit if you are in Christchurch. We rented a car and drove 1 and 1/2 hours from Christchurch to Akaroa. The view along the journal was spectacular. The cruise was great and we did manage to see penguine and dolphins on that day. We were given a nice post card to remember after the cruise. We had a great trip.

Neville C

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2008

Akaroa is a very beautiful place. o go there and not do a cruise and see the hector dolphins would be a big miss.

Florence S
United Kingdom

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2008

The most amazing trip. Saw LOTS of Hector dolphins, seals and one penguin. Would recommend highly.
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Tour code: 3661AHC


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