5 star rating: Highly Recommended 4 Reviews

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  • Location:Akaroa, New Zealand
  • Duration:9 hours (approx.)

Akaroa Harbour and Banks Peninsula Eco Marine Harbour Cruise Small Group Tour

Discover the historic town of Akaroa and the magnificent natural beauty of the Banks Peninsula on this small group tour from Christchurch. Be amazed by the spectacular views of Akaroa Harbour and the Canterbury Plains on the high scenic drive from Christchurch, visit a cheese factory to taste locally made cheese and explore Akoroa's French influenced streets. You'll have the choice to join a nature and harbor cruise to see the rich variety of marine and bird life or to swim with Hector's Dolphins, the world smallest and rarest dolphins only found in New Zealand waters.


  • Full-day tour exploring the french harborside village of Akaroa
  • Enjoy cheese tasting at Barry's Bay Cheese Factory
  • Scenic harbor and nature cruise including the option to swim with the Hectors dolphins (option to be selected at time of booking)
  • Enjoy a cafe lunch
  • Delicious picnic morning and afternoon tea
  • Plenty of photo opportunities
  • Full escorted with informative commentary
  • Traveling in a small group, maximum eight passengers allowing a unique and intimate experience
  • Hotel pickup and drop off

What You Can Expect

Akaroa Harbour and Banks Peninsula Eco Marine Harbour Cruise Small Group Tour

Akaroa Harbour and Banks Peninsula Eco Marine Harbour Cruise Small Group Tour

Depart Christchurch and travel to Akaroa over the beautiful Banks Peninsula, formed following violent eruptions of two ancient volcanoes. The high summit route gives glorious views of Akaroa Harbour, the Canterbury Plains, the distant Southern Alps and the remote bays and farmlands. The Akaroa crater nurses the picturesque harbor and Akaroa village, the only French settlement established in New Zealand.

Visit the Barry's Bay Cheese Factory for a cheese tasting of locally made cheeses, the only remaining cheese factory on the peninsula from a bygone era. Next you can enjoy the quaint colonial architecture and wander around the charming 150 year old French harborside village of Akaroa with its museum of settlers' history, art and craft shops and studios and al fresco cafes and wine bars.

Join a nature and harbor cruise on the Canterbury Cat. As the well appointed Canterbury Cat gently slices through the aqua blue waters of the harbor you'll experience a rich variety of marine and bird life in their natural habitat, including the unique and playful Hector's dolphins.

Alternatively choose to join "Dolphins Up Close" where you can watch dolphins just feet away, get fantastic photos and go dolphin swimming. From the unique, specially designed boats you will enter the water and the private domain of one of nature's most loveable sea mammals, the Hector's Dolphin. Found only in New Zealand, usually around the South Island. The Hector's Dolphin is the world's smallest oceanic dolphin.

Customer Reviews

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2014

Excellent tour with lots of interesting places to visit and see. Tour guide was excellent. Well worth seeing!! I appreciate the small groups with lots of interaction with tour guide and other participants.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2011

Great trip. John, my guide was very friendly and seemed to know everything about the flora and fauna that we came across on the trip. it was very well planned and gives you a chance to get out of the city and see more of the countryside. the sights on the cruise were incredible.

Lazar L

5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2010

Fantastic! Loved everything about the tour, except perhaps the sea sickness. A really enjoyable and memorable day! Would recommend to anyone.

4 star rating: Recommended October 2015

Very good scenic tour and the guide was great. The Eco Marine tour is not for everyone because the boat goes extremely close to the rocks and can be unnerving but it was a good tour.

From USD $ 249.09

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Tour code: 3290AK


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