Pricing and Conditions

Adult $115.00 - $230.00
(14 year(s) and under)
$75.00 - $215.00
Age restriction angle-down


Other charges angle-down

Watching the Dolphins is $115.00 NZD adult and $75.00 NZD child. Swimming with the dolphins is $230 NZD adult, and $215 NZD child.

Terms and conditions angle-down

To have the most memorable time swimming with the dolphins - please note the following: Previous snorkelling experience is an advantage but not entirely necessary as instruction is given. A reasonable degree of water confidence will be helpful too. Seasickness can be challenging for some customers so please bring medication with you or alternatively, we do sell Sealegs at the tour check in counter. Note the the minium ages for children to join the tour to watch is 3yrs and to swim is 8yrs.

Cancellation Policy angle-down

If you wish to cancel/change a booking, as much advance notice as possible is required. If we do not receive at least 24 hours notice of cancellation, a fee will be charged. As swimming spaces are restricted to just 16 per vessel per tour, early advice of cancellations will enable us to sell swim seats to other customers. Please note that the swimming option is heavily booked in summer so it is important to book as far ahead as possible. If the sea is too rough to operate, full refunds apply.

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Kaikoura is famous for a diverse range of marine mammals and birdlife and is regarded as the best place in New Zealand to view whales, dolphins, seals and albatross. Dolphin Encounter has two options to choose from, swimming with the dolphins or watching the dusky dolphins. If swimming is not for you, watching from the comfort of the boat is an unforgettable experience. Tours operate daily throughout the year subject to suitable weather and sea conditions. Check our website for the current departure times. Full wetsuits, snorkels, masks and fins are provided for swimmers. Bring a swimsuit, towel, warm clothing and small gear bag for clothing to be taken on the boat. Previous snorkelling experience is recommended but is not essential.

Opening times

Business hours:
Tours operate at 5.30am, 8.30am and 12.30pm in the summer season (November to April) at 10.00am only (May to September), 5.30am and 8.30am only (October)
Months of operation:
All months of the year


96 Esplanade, Kaikōura, New Zealand.

plane Proximity to airport:
We are 2.5 hours from Christchurch International Airport and 2 hours form Marlborough Airport.
bus Proximity to coach terminal:
800 metres. The coach departure point is the town centre near the Kaikoura isite.
decisions Proximity to town:
Kaikoura is located 2.5 hours north of Christchurch and 1.5 hours south of Blenheim on State HIghway 1. The coastal highway is stunningly beautiful.

Language support

Show all languages written and spoken
  Written Spoken
Chinese (Simplified) YES NO
Czech NO YES
French YES YES
Japanese YES NO

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