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Banks Peninsula on the East Coast of New Zealand’s South Island is home to some of the most spectacular scenery in the world. Nestled in this peninsula is Akaroa which hosts a number of attractions and activities that take advantage of this uniquely beautiful part of the world.
Akaroa Harbour Cruises
Black Cat’s Harbour Cruises are a great way to take in the area as well as get up close to some of the wildlife that calls Akaroa home. This includes Hector’s dolphins, which can only be found in New Zealand and are some of the rarest dolphins in the world. Whales, seals, penguins and a variety of seabirds can also be seen in the area. Tours also provide the chance for visitors to see the area’s volcanic cliffs which make for some spectacular scenery as well as being an interesting source of history in the area.
Banks Peninsula Walk
Whether you are an experienced hiker or just looking for a great experience, the Banks Peninsula track is a great way to explore the area and get to the best views of the Peninsula. Starting and finishing in Akaroa, trampers can choose to do the walks over two or four days and stay in huts along the way. Walking the Banks Peninsula track the perfect way to experience some of the area’s more remote scenery including volcanic coastline, native bush, beaches and waterfalls.
Hiring a water vessel is unique way to explore Akaroa Harbour and they are the perfect choice for those looking to have a bit of unscheduled fun. Kayaks, canoes, paddle boats, row boats and water bikes can be rented out for a relaxing day on the water.
Swimming with Dolphins
One of the most amazing experiences on offer in Akaroa is the chance to swim with the area’s resident dolphins. Hector’s Dolphins are among the world’s friendliest and are happy to come up and play with swimmers on the tours. Getting this close to these spectacular marine animals is an unforgettable experience.
A uniquely Akaroa experience on offer is the area’s cooking school. Akaroa Cooking School offers private classes or is even available to hire out for events. This is a great option if you are in a group of people that you are looking for something to do. Classes with the Cooking School are entertaining and give you the chance to pick up a few delicious cooking tips at the same time.
On top of the wildlife attractions of Akaroa, the area also has options for relaxation and pampering in a spa for the day. Akaroa Body Care or The Shunyata Retreat have pampering covered with everything from day spas to retreats. These are both great spots for a bit of rejuvenation to go with the sightseeing.
Eat and Drink
As well as the area’s great scenic and wildlife attractions, Akaroa has a number of cafés and restaurants which provide a relaxed atmosphere combined with delicious food and wine. Each place offers something different to the next and all are a fantastic way of winding down and relaxing.
Visit the Black Cat Cruises website to find out more about the history of Akaroa!