Explore Bookme forChristchurch

Akaroa - Dolphin Swim - Black Cat Cruises

The only place on the planet, where you can get close to the world's smallest and rarest dolphin, the Hector's Dolphin. Simply rare and unique.

Highlights

  • Swim with playful Hector's Dolphins in the Akaroa Harbour
  • Rated as one of the ‘Top 10 Marine Mammal Experiences in The World’ by Lonely Planet!
  • Once in a lifetime experience with the world's smallest and rarest dolphin
  • Complimentary refreshments onboard

SWIMMING WITH DOLPHINS – AKAROA


Watch the video above!


Akaroa Harbour is the only place on the planet where you can get close to the world's smallest and rarest dolphin, the Hector's Dolphin!

These magnificent creatures have made their home base in Akaroa, a stunning French inspired sea-side village just a 90 minute scenic drive from Christchurch. The name Akaroa means "long harbour".

Join Black Cat Cruises for an unforgettable journey where you’ll get the once in a lifetime opportunity to swim with these dolphins inside the naturally protected harbour, not out in the open seas.

Black Cat Cruises are a supreme tourism award winning company with an excellent safety track record and a portion of every ticket sold goes towards the conservation of the Hector's dolphin.

We only allow 12 swimmers in the water at one time allowing greater opportunity for one on one interaction with the dolphins.




Success Rate:

We have a high success rate for swimming with these dolphins, but they are wild dolphins, so seeing them is a great privilege.

The great thing about viewing or swimming with dolphins is that you are doing it in their natural habitat completely on their terms, and so of course we cannot absolutely "guarantee" dolphins on every single trip, and nor can any other operator.

Sometimes dolphins may have calves with them, or are feeding, mating or just resting. It's important for us not to interact with dolphins when they don't want to.

But you may be interested to know that in the last 12 months we saw dolphins on 98% of our cruises and had successful swims on 81% of our swim trips. So you have to be a bit unlucky to miss out!

In the unlikely event you don’t see any dolphins (average 3% of cruises) then we give you a refund of 50%. If the dolphins don’t want to interact with swimmers (average 17% of cruises) then we give you a 25% refund.



Adult $185.00 (16+ years)
Child $155.00 (8 - 15 years)

What's included

  • Our facilities here on the Main Wharf Akaroa include Briefing Area, spacious and heated Changing Rooms with Hot Showers and Lockers for valuables.
  • Excellent quality wetsuits that are 5mm in thickness.
  • Masks.
  • Hot Chocolate and biscuits on board!

Duration

  • Allow approximately 3 hours for the whole experience

Location

  • Departures are from the Akaroa Main Wharf, Akaroa, 7520.

Restrictions

  • All swimmers MUST be confident in open Harbour/Sea conditions as the Akaroa Harbour where you will be swimming is between 15 and 30 metres deep.

    All swimmers must be able to swim a minimum of 50 metres unaided as life jackets are not provided as your swimming ability and confidence must be of the standard that you do not require a Life Jacket.

    Children are required to be a minimum of 8 years old to swim with dolphins.

    Children aged 8-12 years must be accompanied by an adult swimmer.

Child Friendly

  • This experience welcomes families with children.

Bad Weather Refunds

  • If your experience is cancelled by the operator (because of the weather or anything else out of your control) you will be entitled to a full refund.

Notes

  • Allow approximately 3 hours for the whole experience, this includes half-hour prior for briefing and getting changed into wetsuits at our facilities.

    2 hours out on the water which includes travel time prior and post-swim.

Available Bookings from July 20 to July 26

Change Dates

All prices are shown in NZD ($)

Tue 20 Jul
Wed 21 Jul
Thu 22 Jul
Fri 23 Jul
Sat 24 Jul
Sun 25 Jul
Mon 26 Jul

  • Adult$129.00 Less than 6 at this price!
  • Child$155.00

Authenticated Reviews & PhotosAll of our reviews are from people who have booked and paid for this activity thru Bookme

Authenticated Reviews & PhotosAll of our reviews are from people who have booked and paid for this activity thru Bookme

4.6

192 reviews

Showing all 192 authenticated Bookme reviews

rabbit99 from South Korea wrote on 23 March 2021

사랑스러운 돌고래와 수영하기!!

오픈 워터라길래 좀 긴장했는데 웻수트 덕에 그냥 균형만 잘잡으면 떠있을수 있어요 하지만 아무리 잘 버텨도 바닷물 먹는건 각오해야함 고프로 가져가서 수중촬영 꼭 하세요 수면위로는 생각보다 가까이 안오는거 같은데 나모르게(?) 발밑에 지나가고 그랬더라두요 깜찍이덜 직원분들이 배에서 계속 돌고래 위치 지켜봐주고 사진도 무료로 촬영해서 이메일로 보내줍니다 돌아가는길에 핫초코도 주고요 특별한 경험 하고 싶다면 강력 추천!!

Share Link

This review helped me

Grace Aberhart-North from New Zealand wrote on 20 February 2021

Absolutely incredible

We had an amazing day. The wetsuits were incredibly buoyant which definitely made us feel comfortable in the water Staff were great and had amazing local knowledge. Had an amazing time, would recommend in a heartbeat !! 5stars!

Share Link

This review helped me

Cody MacDonald from New Zealand wrote on 09 February 2021

Akaroa Dolphins

Amazing! Service was great. Attached photos for glimpse of experience

Share Link

This review helped me

Parichat from New Zealand wrote on 27 April 2021

Fun and beautiful trip

Beautiful trip out in the big ocean. A few dolphins around but none wanted to hang out (swim) with us so didn't get in the water so they refunded 25%

Share Link

This review helped me

Anet from Czech Republic wrote on 19 April 2021

Great Bday

A week in advance I had been watching the weather forecast, and when a sunny day came out for my birthday, I couldn't resist. it was a really beautiful experience with a nice crew. the borrowed wetsuit worked and I was really in the sea with wild dolphins - fantastic! 💙🐬🌊☀️🤩🙋🏻‍♀️

Share Link

This review helped me

close

10:00 a.m.Thursday 13 July

Spaces Left

Adult 16+ years

    Child 8 - 15 years

      *This option must be made together with another price type.
      close

      Qualmark Certification

      This award identifies a business with a high level of professionalism, a keen awareness of the impact it has on the environment and a commitment to a customer centric approach.

      This award is evidence of a sophisticated tourism business that consistently exceeds visitor expectations. Their proactive leadership and management ensure the business’s focus on continuously improving their economic, social and environmental performance to create genuine, constantly evolving and sustainable tourism experiences.

      This award recognises the best sustainable tourism businesses in New Zealand. It denotes exceptional customer experiences at the heart of everything the company does. This business is leading the way in making the New Zealand tourism industry a world class sustainable visitor destination.

      When you see the Qualmark logo, your activity of choice is endorsed by New Zealand Tourism’s official quality assurance organisation and backed by leaders in the industry. It’s your trusted guide to iconic activities and experiences that are awarded for their exceptionally high level of quality, safety and sustainability.

      Sample menu

      close
      delete

      Delete your content?

      This item will be deleted immediately. You can't undo this action.

      close
      playlist_add
      close
      question_answer