Explore Bookme forthe West Coast

West Coast Wildlife Centre - Tuatara Encounter & Backstage Pass Tour

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The “behind the scenes” Tuatara Encounter at the West Coast Wildlife Centre in Franz Josef, West Coast of New Zealand, is a fascinating exclusive tour. Here you can view up-close the prehistoric tuatara that is endemic only to New Zealand.

Highlights

  • Entry into the Behind the Scenes Area of the Tuatara Encounter
  • Journey with an experienced Tuatara guide who will share key information
  • Tailor made presentation
  • See the live food we feed Tuatara

Here you can view up-close the prehistoric tuatara that is endemic only to New Zealand.

Incredibly 230 million years ago when the first dinosaurs arrived on the scene the ancestors of the tuatara were still roaming the planet and thought to be at least 2m tall.

Tuatara have very special significance to Maori and are named for their appearance.” Tara” means spiny and “tua” meaning back. The tuatara living here at the West Coast Wildlife Centre were translocated to Franz Josef by Nelson based iwi Ngati Koata who have the largest tuatara population in the world.

Tuatara were once feared by the Maori, as they signified messengers of (Whio) god of death and disaster.) Today tuatara are regarded as taonga (treasure) and as the Kaitaiki (guardian) of the trails to the realms of the mind and spirit that give humans life.

Tuatara can live to over 100 years of age and became extinct on the mainland of New Zealand last century. Today they live mainly on offshore islands around New Zealand with around 50,000 to 60,000 live on Stephens Island(Takaporaewa) in the Marlborough Sounds.

Adult $52.00
Child $26.00

Child Friendly

  • This experience welcomes families with children.

Available Bookings from January 23 to January 29

Change Dates

All prices for this activity are shown in NZD ($)

10:00 a.m.
12:00 p.m.
3:00 p.m.
4:30 p.m.
Wed 23 Jan
Thu 24 Jan
Fri 25 Jan
Sat 26 Jan
Sun 27 Jan
Mon 28 Jan
Tue 29 Jan

3spaces priced from:

  • Adult$52.00
  • Child$26.00

2spaces priced from:

  • Adult$29.90
  • Child$26.00

5spaces priced from:

  • Adult$29.90
  • Child$26.00

4spaces priced from:

  • Adult$29.90
  • Child$26.00

6spaces priced from:

  • Adult$52.00
  • Child$26.00

5spaces priced from:

  • Adult$27.95
  • Child$26.00

4spaces priced from:

  • Adult$29.90
  • Child$26.00

3spaces priced from:

  • Adult$29.90
  • Child$26.00

3spaces priced from:

  • Adult$52.00
  • Child$26.00

5spaces priced from:

  • Adult$29.90
  • Child$26.00

4spaces priced from:

  • Adult$29.90
  • Child$26.00

4spaces priced from:

  • Adult$52.00
  • Child$26.00

2spaces priced from:

  • Adult$29.90
  • Child$26.00

2spaces priced from:

  • Adult$52.00
  • Child$26.00

4spaces priced from:

  • Adult$29.90
  • Child$26.00

5spaces priced from:

  • Adult$39.90
  • Child$26.00

4spaces priced from:

  • Adult$52.00
  • Child$26.00

2spaces priced from:

  • Adult$52.00
  • Child$26.00

4spaces priced from:

  • Adult$29.90
  • Child$26.00

3spaces priced from:

  • Adult$29.90
  • Child$26.00

3spaces priced from:

  • Adult$52.00
  • Child$26.00

4spaces priced from:

  • Adult$52.00
  • Child$26.00

6spaces priced from:

  • Adult$52.00
  • Child$26.00

2spaces priced from:

  • Adult$52.00
  • Child$26.00

6spaces priced from:

  • Adult$52.00
  • Child$26.00

12+spaces priced from:

  • Adult$52.00
  • Child$26.00

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

4.8

5 reviews

Showing all 5 authenticated Bookme reviews

Amaria Frances Connell from New Zealand wrote on 08 December 2018

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Best experience ever!

I loved this experience! So many facts about Tuatara and was such a special experience to get up so close to them. I would definitely recommend. Staff were great too. As a bonus, you can also see the kiwi (also amazing). You will not regret it!

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Wen from Singapore wrote on 01 July 2018

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Wonderful experience!

Great to have such a close encounter with the amazing Tuataras and though it was not the kiwi breeding season when I was there, learning about it from the guide was an enriching experience too!

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Mandy from United Kingdom wrote on 26 February 2018

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Great

Was good tour as just the two of us , lots of information on these guys

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Sue from Germany wrote on 19 December 2018

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Viele Informationen

Nette kurze Tour mit vielen neuen Informationen. Sehr nette Ranger! Sehr empfehlenswert

This review helped me

Helene Georges from France wrote on 16 May 2018

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Très belle matinée

Super matinée, 1h de visite guidée. Comme j'étais seule j'ai pu voir les Tuatara et les kiwis! Je recommande vivement

This review helped me

10:00 a.m.Thursday 13 July

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