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“Sea to Sky Off-Road Adventure” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Kiwi Coastal Tours

Kiwi Coastal Tours
410 The Esplanade, Island Bay, Wellington 6023, New Zealand
+64 27 252 0099
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Certificate of Excellence 2014
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Owner description: Kiwi Coastal Tours. An Authentic Maori Cultural Experience. A trip with Gary and Kiwi Coastal Tours will not disappoint, from the start to the end you will be wanting more. An informal Maori mihi or greeting starts your experience, be prepared for a relaxing no rush journey around Wellington city, around the coast and along secluded beaches, take in the awesome scenic panoramas of Raukawa (Cook strait) and on a fine day views of the south island of New Zealand.Learn about the maori way of life pre-European to the present day,hear about the legends of the land and the way Maori used what nature provide for sustenance and as medicines.Safe off road sojourns are a special delight you will get to visit areas that even the locals rarely get to view, there is so much on offer with Gary and Kiwi Coastal Tours so bring a camera and a smile and Gary will throw in a cuppa tea or coffee at our designated rest area with toilet facilities and an awesome view. Be prepared for an enjoyable three (3) hours. Did I mention the wild animals ? I have a reliable vehicle that transports 5 (five) persons comfortably or 6 (six) at a push. I am a one man operation so you get me and only me. Looking forward to having you share this experience with me. Regards GARY KIEL
Edmonton, Canada
Senior Contributor
47 reviews 47 reviews
17 attraction reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
“Sea to Sky Off-Road Adventure”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2013

This tour, which can be 3, 5 or 7 hours in length, is a great way for overseas visitors to get a taste of Maori culture with a local guide and see stunning sights along off-road trails few others get the opportunity to travel. Receive a traditional Maori greeting, learn how your guide traces his cultural heritage back to New Zealand’s founding tribes, hear about the mythology surrounding the creation of the local Wellington landscape, and go off-road on costal beaches and hill trails that will have you hanging on to your seat in places. This tour has it all and is excellent value for money. If you only have a short time in Wellington it’s recommended you combine this tour with a visit to ‘Te Papa’ Museum of New Zealand and you wont be disappointed.

Visited November 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Garykiel123, Owner at Kiwi Coastal Tours, responded to this review, November 22, 2013
Kia ora and thank you for your kind words for my tour, it was such a great pleasure to show you the south coast and especially enjoyable that I was able to share it with you.
Take care in all that you do and I hope that the rest of your tour of our beautiful country was as enjoyable.
Regards Gary
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115 reviews from our community

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English first
Stockport, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“A perfect day”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 10, 2013

Adding another "Excellent" review to the well deserved ever increasing list. We had a private tour with Gary through the breathtaking rugged Wellington coastline. He was happy to tailor the tour to our interests, for us, spending more time with the seals and the best views that few people know about or can access. Although we only booked a five hour tour he was more than happy to let it run over (which it did by quite a lot) and never made you feel rushed at any point. His extensive knowledge of Maori culture, language and use of the various plants that we found was incredibly interesting. The 4 x 4 was very comfy and his driving was top notch, felt safe the whole time. His lovely cafe provided really good food, even for us vegetarians (and one with an egg allergy as well!)
He makes it feel like you are having a day out with a friend rather than the normal rigid "tour experience"
Truly a brilliant day, highly recommend this trip. If you are visiting Wellington and want to see more than just the city center then this tour is a must.

Visited September 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Garykiel123, Owner at Kiwi Coastal Tours, responded to this review, September 21, 2013
Kia ora Julia and Hanna
Wow what a great tour we had together and I am so glad that you both enjoyed the day.
For me it is all about giving my (manuhiri) guests an experience they will not forget by making it a relaxed, comfortable informative and enjoyable experience.
Thank you for the wonderful review it is very much appreciated.
Nga mihinui kia korua.
Gary
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Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Excellent !”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 23, 2013

This tour is 1 of the highlight of my entire Wellington trip. Gary is very knowledgeable about the land & animals. He shares lots about his Maori heritage & tradition which we enjoy very much. He makes you feel as though he is your friend instead of a tour guide. We wanted to see the wind turbines & he brought us there which unfortunately is closed due to lambing but that didnt' spoil our tour. The lunch at his cafe is awesome especially with the beautiful seaview. We wanted to try the seafood chowder & the the fish. His wife is kind enough to prepare half of each for us! The journey up the mountain which nobody else could access is totally fantastic. We enjoy the tranquil coastal views & feeding the wild animals, not to mention spotting several seals! Though the route seems dangerous, you never once feel scared because Gary makes you feel really safe! We signed up for the 5 hours' tour & even so, it feels like it ends far too soon!! Definitely encourage this tour!!!

Visited August 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Garykiel123, Owner at Kiwi Coastal Tours, responded to this review, September 5, 2013
Kia ora Emily
Thank you for your beautiful review of our tour together, I am so glad that you enjoyed the Maori aspect of my tours as well as the sights and scenery, the visit to the rock pools and to see the wildlife in their natural surroundings is very gratifying.
I wish you all the best in your future travels.
Nga mihi nui kia koutou
Gary
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Rotorua, New Zealand
1 review
“What An Experience!!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 19, 2013

What an absolutely magical day!! Thanks so much to our wonderful tour guide Gary who took us on a breath taking adventure along rugged coastline to visit colonies of seals. This tour went above and beyond my expectations, while I was expecting to see perhaps one or two seals I was overwhelmed when I could count well over 30 seals all within a stone throw of where we stood. Gary has a wealth of knowledge of the area and the wildlife which made the tour just that much more memorable. Not only were we at one with nature for a few hours and enjoying spectacular scenery we were treated to a delicious lunch at the Bach Cafe. If you want to see New Zealand at its most beautiful then this tour is a must!

Visited June 2013
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Garykiel123, Owner at Kiwi Coastal Tours, responded to this review, September 5, 2013
Kia ora Dana
Thank you for your review of our tour together, it was very pleasing to be able to showcase the south coast and the wild life that abounds there.
I hope the rest of your stay in Wellington was as enjoyable.
Nga mihi nui kia koe
Gary
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On the Water
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
9 attraction reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
“BooK This Now if you are Visiting Wellington!!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 30, 2013

This tour with Gary, is top notch!! Gary took us places that even the people who live in Wellington do not see. The vistas and the wildlife were amazing and his knowledge of the land and the sea were so very interesting. The 4x4 was very sturdy and we had a trill a minute going down to the sea. We felt in good hands at all times. Travel is about adventure and new and interesting things to do and see. Gary fits that bill. Would not pass this tour up. He and his lovely wife were so engaging and truly passionate about New Zealand.

Visited March 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Garykiel123, Owner at Kiwi Coastal Tours, responded to this review, June 2, 2013
Kia ora and thank you for your awesome review.
I am so glad that you enjoyed the day and the experience of my tour, I try to include a lot of things that others drive straight past and also give a small insight into my Maori heritage and culture.
My wife and I do enjoy entertaining visitors to Wellington and it is very satisfying to know that it is appreciated.
Nga mihi nui kia koutou
Gary
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