5 star rating: Highly Recommended 5 Reviews

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  • Location:Auckland, New Zealand
  • Duration:4 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

Auckland Dolphin and Whale Watching Cruise

Look for whales, dolphins and seabirds in the pristine waters of Hauraki Gulf just a short boat ride from Auckland’s Viaduct Harbour. On this half-day whale and dolphin safari, you're on the lookout for the marine mammals that frequent the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park waters. Expert guides share fun facts and informative commentary throughout the trip as you soak up the natural wonders of New Zealand, just offshore from Auckland.


  • 4.5-hour whale and dolphin watching cruise, from Auckland
  • Ride aboard a custom-built luxury catamaran for a superb viewing experience
  • Keep your eyes peeled for dolphins and as many as six types of whales
  • Observe gannets that hunt by plunging into the water at speeds of up to 87 mph (140 kmh)
  • Listen to entertaining and informative commentary provided by your captain and crew
  • Departs from the Viaduct Harbour, conveniently located in downtown Auckland

What You Can Expect

Auckland Dolphin and Whale Watching Cruise

Auckland whale and dolphin watching cruise

Make your way to Viaduct Harbour where your captain welcomes you as you board the custom-built 65-foot (20-meter) catamaran. The comfortable vessel ensures that you enjoy cruising the waters of Hauraki Gulf Marine Park as you look for whales and dolphins.

Some 23 different species call the Hauraki Gulf home, including the native Bryde’s whale. You'll never know what you're going to see around these waters, but it might be bottlenose dolphins that are frequently spotted playing around the boats, or seabirds such as Australasian gannets, petrels, shearwaters, white-fronted terns, and penguins.

Throughout your tour, your captain and the guides share informative and entertaining commentary about these critters of the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park, considered one of the world’s most biologically and geographically diverse marine parks. Learn about the animals that your crew tracks and the research that they conduct in tandem with local marine scientists.

While wildlife viewings cannot be guaranteed, dolphins and whales are often swimming around the waters. In the event that you do not see any marine mammals during your trip, you can go again another day at no extra charge.

Auckland weather is fickle, so dressing in warm layers and weatherproof gear is recommended. A sun hat (with chin strap to secure it), sunscreen, sunglasses, camera, binoculars and flat-soled shoes are also good essentials for your trip.

After your 4.5-hour cruise, your boat returns to Auckland where your tour ends.

Customer Reviews

5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2015

Fantastic! We had a wonderful afternoon on board the whale and dolphin safari boat. We didn't see whales but did see a pod of over 200 dolphins swimming under and around our boat. The dolphins herd the fish into a ball underwater and then the Gannets hundreds of them are also there feeding and dive bombing for fish. We felt like we were on a National Geographic excursion. This trip was a top highlight of our trip to Auckland. Professional staff and crew and very friendly and informative. Lots of time to take pictures and take in the wonderful scenery. A most pleasant and relaxing excursion. Viator was a great way to book.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2015

I would recommend to anyone, the crew are incredibly helpful and knowledgable. They are great when it comes to tracking and really know what they what they are doing, we saw byrdes whales and common dolphins as well as feeding frenzies. They dont harass the animals and teach you about the ocean.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2015

Fabulous day. Seeing the dolphins, whale and birds in their natural habitats was amazing. The trip is a must.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended March 2015


5 star rating: Highly Recommended March 2015

Really fun

From USD $ 106.14

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Tour code: 6608AWDS


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