These guys know their seals and they know how to look after you and will always try to keep their customers happy.
The day before we went on this tour they had to cancel as the visibility was not good. We were booked for a 9.30am tour and they gave us the option to change this to a later booking as they weren't that happy with the visibility but were willing to take us out and offer a 50% refund if we weren't happy, however our tight schedule meant we were going!
One thing you should all know - even if you aren't a swimmer, don't let that stop you from doing this tour. You are put into a 5mm wet suit, booties and hoodie - this alone will keep you afloat - mask, snorkel and fins, all equipment of good quality. Once in the water, if you are still uncomfortable (or let them know before you're in the water) and they'll give you a floating board to use. My mother (in her 60's and can't swim) was looked after brilliantly by "Dad". He ensured that she enjoyed her time in the water and even got her to put her head under to see the seals swimming closely around her - that's some feat!
Firstly, we went to an area of rocks that were fairly close to Kaikoura and known for seals but there were few there on our visit, so they took us a little way off to where they know of another colony, this was ~15mins further boat journey, sure enough there were seals for us to swim amongst.
The seals are not afraid of us swimmers, in fact they totally ignored us and went about their business, twirling round and round, cleaning their whiskers, rubbing their skin against the rocks and generally looking like they didn't have a care in the world. At times it was us that had to get out of the way of the seal as they obliviously twirled beside us.
We were in the water for quite a while (about 1.5hrs) and didn't get back on the bus till 12.20pm. Back at base, we had a hot shower, so remember to take your towel.
An excellent tour and well worth it!
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