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Dolphin Encounter

Address: 96 Esplanade, Kaikoura 7300, New Zealand
Phone Number: 03 319 6777
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97%
Ranked #1 of 34 Activities in Kaikoura
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Type: Tours, Adventure
Activities: Swimming with dolphins
Fee: Yes
Owner description: Swim with the dolphins in their natural environment or watch their acrobatic displays form the...
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities, Activities for older children
More attraction details
Attraction details
Type: Tours, Adventure
Activities: Swimming with dolphins
Fee: Yes
Owner description: Swim with the dolphins in their natural environment or watch their acrobatic displays form the comfort of the boat.
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities, Activities for older children

Hotels near Dolphin Encounter

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431 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
Oxfordshire
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
13 attraction reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 21, 2014 NEW

I was apprehensive about the water temperature, it was really cold, despite the thick and well fitting wetsuit and hood provided. It took me a minute to force myself off the boat and it does take your breath away a bit, I swam with a kick board that they offered at first as it made me feel safer. Ideally I... More 

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Singapore, Singapore
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 19, 2014 NEW

We were initially somewhat apprehensive about the activity because it was in cold waters in the open sea. But the guides and crew were organised and professional, and the briefing on-shore put our minds a little more at ease. But once the dolphins were spotted - and there were literally hundreds - and once we were in the water -... More 

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Cambridge, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
12 attraction reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 15, 2014 NEW

This is well worth doing. I booked mine last minute, just before I headed away from Kaikoura. You get five swims (more being unfair on the dolphins). The boat takes you out ahead of a school of dolphins and you jump in and swim towards them. The trick is to make enough odd noises under the water to interest the... More 

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Hebden Bridge, United Kingdom
2 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 14, 2014

An awesome experience. We saw hundreds of dolphins and at times there were 5 or 6 swimming around us personally. To attract the dolphins you are instructed to sing through your snorkel. You may feel a little silly at first but it really does work, and the experience of having the dolphins all around you is worth the embarrassment! Having... More 

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Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 14, 2014

A truly incredible experience that proved to be one of the best activities I undertook during my time in New Zealand. Staff were friendly and knowledgeable throughout and had a clear care and affection for the wild dolphins that we were lucky enough to swim with. It does not feel like a overly commercial operation and with each boat restricted... More 

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London, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
291 reviews 291 reviews
31 attraction reviews
131 helpful votes 131 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 11, 2014

Unless the weather was bad or the dolphins just were not around (they are after all wild creatures and there is no incentive for them - ie food - to be near the boats) we fail to see how anyone cannot give this activity the top rating. We had wanted to do this trip 14 years ago when we first... More 

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San Sebastian - Donostia, Spain
2 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 11, 2014

Even though we had some trouble locating the dolphins we were finally able to find them and enjoyed the trip thoroughly. As we didn't find as many as was expected and since the sea was quite agitated (some of us got seasick), we even got a small refund. The guides were great too!

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Milwaukee, WI
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
7 attraction reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 10, 2014

Swimming with dolphins is an absolute must do during your visit. Water is cold but after a few seconds your body adjusts and it's so worth it. Dolphins swim within inches of you. Once in a lifetime experience. The boat ride/dolphin watching is also worth it but ONLY if you are not physically able to do the in-water experience. Company... More 

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Madison, Wisconsin
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
8 attraction reviews
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 8, 2014

This was by far the most amazing thing I've done on a vacation. When we saw "swimming with dolphins" we pictured a Sea World excursion where there are a handful of dolphins that are somewhat trained or domesticated. This was nothing like that! You take the boat out and search for the dolphin pack. Once it's found you jump off... More 

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Wellington, New Zealand
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 7, 2014

On Saturday 6th December I went on the dolphin swim tour with Dolphin Encounter Kaikoura and I was mightily impressed from the moment that I arrived. The headquarters were very well maintained and very attractively situated on the esplanade and had its own onsite café. When I arrived there was already a queue reaching the door and although I was... More 

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Typical questions asked:
  • Will you pick up and drop off at my hotel?
  • I have a family of 7. Can your tour accommodate all of us together?
  • How should I dress for this tour?