Best time to visit New Zealand

Dolphin Encounter in New Zealand

Have you ever dreamt about swimming together with joyful dolphins? Dreams come true in Kaikoura

Dolphin Encounter
Dolphin Encounter

Kaikoura coastal waters merely teem with playful dolphins. These cheerful mammals swim close to the water surface as every 5 to 10 minutes they need to breathe the air using a hole located on the head that works like a huge nostril. Dozens of dolphins might be seen swimming around Kaikoura, jumping out of the water and cheering holiday-makers.

There are two options you might choose from: either watch the dolphins from the boat or make use of a wetsuit, a mask, a snorkel and fins provided and literally swim alongside with the dolphins.

Although dolphin tours are available throughout the year, the ​winter season is better for diving as then the waters are the clearest.

Practical info

When is the best time to visit Kaikoura for dolphin encounter?

From June to August, which is the winter season in New Zealand, you can have the best experience of a dolphin encounter in Kaikoura. During this period of the year, the waters are clearer which makes snorkeling more enjoyable. While dolphin tours are open throughout the year, the weather conditions and water clarity might affect the experience quality. Show more

Where is the best place to swim with dolphins in Kaikoura?

If you want to experience swimming with dolphins in Kaikoura, you can go to companies near the Kaikoura Peninsula. These tour companies provide wetsuits, masks, snorkels and fins, and expert instructors to maximize safety on the open water where dolphins can naturally be found. Show more

What is the average water temperature during the winter season in Kaikoura?

In the winter season in Kaikoura, the average water temperature is approximately 12 °C (54 °F). Nonetheless, water temperature can change dependently, according to weather and location. Wearing wetsuits during the exciting swimming experience with dolphins is recommended. Show more

How many dolphins can be seen during one tour?

The amount of dolphins that you can see in each tour depends on the tour company, the time of day, location and season. In Kaikoura's dolphin tour, you can expect to see numerous dolphins, reaching dozens or even hundreds. Being close to these friendly mammals guarantees you an unforgettable experience with lifelong memories. Show more

What other marine animals can be spotted during the dolphin tours besides dolphins?

Dolphins are not the only fascinating marine animals you can witness in Kaikoura. Seals, whales, penguins, and seabirds are just some of the many different marine species that you can encounter in a dolphin tour in Kaikoura. Combining a swim with dolphins and observing marine wildlife is an unforgettable experience that lets you explore the beautiful marine wildlife of Kaikoura. Show more

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Last updated: by Eleonora Provozin