• Location: Paihia, New Zealand
  • Duration: 4 hours (approx.)
From USD $ 85.84 View price calendar

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Watch for dolphins in the Bay of Islands on a 4-hour wildlife cruise by high-speed catamaran, with the chance to swim alongside a pod of dolphins. This half-day dolphin tour is specially designed to respect the dolphins’ habitat, and includes use of snorkeling equipment and a wetsuit. Both morning and afternoon departures are available.


  • Half-day dolphin watching tour
  • See the Bay of Islands from the water
  • Chance to swim with dolphins
  • Wetsuit and snorkel gear provided
  • Catamaran equipped with hot showers and hot drinks
  • Morning and afternoon tours available

What You Can Expect

Dolphin Discovery in the Bay of Islands

Spotting wildlife

Make your way to a departure point in Paihia to board a high-speed catamaran dolphin boat (it's also possible to meet the boat in Russell). Find a comfortable spot on deck, and keep your camera out—you'll have unobstructed views of the Bay of Islands as the captain searches for a pod of dolphins.

If you spot a group of dolphins, Department of Conservation regulations will determine whether it’s possible to swim alongside them (when baby dolphins are present, no swimming is allowed). Should your group get clearance to swim, pull on a wetsuit and snorkel gear, then slip into the water to see the animals beneath the surface. Touching the dolphins is not allowed, but it’s a fascinating chance to see them swimming through the clear water.

Following your swim, return to the boat for a hot drink and a hot shower, then head back towards the original departure point, where this dolphin tour concludes.

Customer Reviews

Peter N

3 star rating: Worth doing January 2017

Enjoyed the boat trip and great to see the dolphins. We were not allowed to swim with the dolphins as there was a very young dolphin there - would be useful to know how often the tour groups are allowed to actually swim with the dolphins. So you are likely to see dolphins but it is seems 50:50 whether you are allowed to swim with them - may be it depends on the season - would be useful to be made aware in advance. Boat was packed, so lots of people trying to get to in a good position to take photos and so a number of people miss out - I would have preferred paying more and being part of a smaller group. As we were not allowed to swim with the dolphins, boat anchored so that you could go snorkelling and see some fish etc. But there are very few fish to see at the location so not quite what was expected. Overall ok - too much overstated and hyped up !

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