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4.5 star rating: Recommended 14 Reviews

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

Akaroa Swim with Dolphins Tour from Christchurch

Enjoy a unique opportunity to swim with dolphins in the wild during an Akaroa Harbour cruise. Strap on your provided wetsuit, flippers and snorkel gear, then slip into the water to swim alongside inquisitive Hector’s dolphins. This full-day trip from Christchurch includes a drive through the South Island countryside to Akaroa. You’ll admire breathtaking points of interest such as Governor’s Bay and Lake Ellesmere en route, enjoy free time to explore Akaroa, then visit a cheese factory for a tasting session in Barry's Bay.

Highlights

  • 9-hour Akaroa dolphin swim experience, from Christchurch
  • Admire beautiful scenery on route to Akaroa, such as Governor’s Bay, Gebbies Pass and Lake Ellesmere
  • Watch out for seals and penguins from your boat in Akaroa harbour
  • Jump into the sea and swim with wild Hector’s dolphins
  • Marvel at the volcanic coastal scenery
  • Enjoy free time to explore the many fine craft shops in town
  • Visit a local cheese factory to taste fine New Zealand cheeses
  • Includes round-trip travel from centrally located Christchurch hotels

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Akaroa Swim with Dolphins Tour from Christchurch

Akaroa Swim with Dolphins Tour from Christchurch

This day trip includes the chance to swim with Hector’s dolphins — one of the world’s smallest dolphin species — in Akaroa Harbour, a waterway teeming with marine life.

After a morning pickup from your Christchurch hotel, enjoy a comfortable coach drive to the coastal town of Akaroa, passing breathtaking natural landmarks such as Governor’s Bay, Gebbies Pass, Lake Ellesmere, Lake Forsyth and Little River.

On arrival, embark on a dolphin cruise over Akaroa Harbour. Keep an eye out for penguins and seals, and search the waters for curious and playful Hector’s dolphins — commonly sighted among the waves. 

When your captain has located a pod, don your wetsuit, mask, snorkel and flippers then slip into the water. Since these endangered marine mammals are completely wild in their natural habitat, touching them is not permitted, but simply ducking down beneath the waves to marvel at the magnificent dolphins makes for an unforgettable experience. 

After the return journey to Akaroa, enjoy free time for lunch (own expense), and explore the craft shops and French colonial buildings in this charming corner of the South Island. Your guide then accompanies you to a Barry's Bay cheese factory for a tasting session of fine New Zealand cheeses.

Your full-day tour concludes with the return drive to Christchurch, with drop-off at your hotel.

Customer Reviews

Deborah S

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2014

I purchased this for my daughter, who was vacationing in New Zealand. She said it was AMAZING. There were around 30 dolphins playing with them. They swam and played with them for a long time and had a blast. Highlight of her trip.

I'd also like to commend the tour operator for their flexibility. We had to change the date of the tour 3 times and they were always very accommodating.

Rupita

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2013

amazing experience, everyone should do this!

Stephanie G

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2011

Great value for money! Great Team and great time with the Dolphins!!!! Do not hesitate!!!

Scott R Australia

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2011

It was a highlight to swim with the Hector dolphins. The dolphin swim was the best part of this trip, fairly long day but worth while.

Gustavo B USA

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2010

Excellent tour! Not only was it great that the driver picked us up from our hostal but he was very informative and knowledgable about the area as we drove to Akaroa. Non-stop chat-box. He stopped to allow us to take nice pictures on the side of the road. The day was perfect for seeing dolphins. We swam in a pod of about 18 dolphins at one time. Wetsuits make floating almost effortless and the cold water tolerable. One of the best part of our whole trip.

Amanda K Canada

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2010

Swimming with the dolphins was amazing, the driver between Christchurch and Akaroa was very nice and professional. The duration of the trip was perfect.

Leah T Australia

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2009

Swimming with the dolphins in their natural habitat was amazing! I would rate this the best thing that I have done out of all my traveling over the years.

Kai A

4 star rating: Recommended December 2015

Had an amazing time with the Dolphins and will remember this day for ever.... So stunning and beautiful!!! However please please make sure to call the tour operator if you choose to be picked up from your hotel!... I was told a certain time but had to call them after waiting for an hour for them to arrive! They then told me they wouldn't be able to drop me back off at the end of the day Gratefully the coach did drop me at my hotel I think more information needs to be put on this advert... You are picked up by minivan and dropped into the city center were you transfer to a separate coach company that transport you to Akaroa with amazing stops on the way.... But I will defiantly be contacting the tour operator after their attitude towards their customers .... But the swim made up for it all to be honest!

Tammy D

4 star rating: Recommended January 2014

Great time! It took a bit to find some dolphins, but they came around. And getting Hot Chocolate after being in the water was a great touch.

Nicola A

4 star rating: Recommended February 2013

I can highly recommend swimming with the Dolphins! They are so beautiful and in the wild, an experience I will never forget. And the pickup, transfer etc also all went smoothly. Do it!

From USD $ 181.17

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Tour code: 2950CLT09A

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