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Private Tour: Waiatoto Jet Boat River Safari from Haast

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    What to Expect
    The format of this 3-hour private tour is to travel up the river over 16 kilometers with frequent stops to learn about the local history, the kiwi bird sanctuary, geology, flora and fauna of New Zealand and of course, take photos.
    You will pass through the infamous fault line and see for yourself the massive ancient rock thrown up by the earth’s mantle many thousands of years ago sitting in the heart of the greenstone country.
    You will hold greenstone while you learn about its very high value to the local Maori people while being able to feel as though you are stepping back into a mystical time when the Giant Haast Eagle and Moa birds still roamed these lands.
    At the top of the river after seeing the landscape and river change dramatically many times. You will have the option of an easy forest stroll into the ancient beach forest to smell and touch the many tree species first hand. Hear the native bird life as they carry on their daily song. You are now in the last frontier with no interruption of any mankind.
    Enjoy the opportunity to wander the riverside beach alone to contemplate life and spot your special piece of stone, perhaps even greenstone. 
    After a break, it is non-stop to the Tasman Sea. A much faster trip as you are now traveling with the flow of the river. You will learn about the famous New Zealand fish called whitebait and historical Haast Glacier. Then you will turn and look back at the Southern Alps as they tower behind the sea. Sea birds are present here and you will finish off by traveling up a remote and very peaceful side estuary for 5-minutes of complete silence just to enjoy the abundant birdlife song and spot flounder fish, whitebait and trout.
    Before the tour ends you will experience the traditional and iconic Hamilton Turn which is named after the New Zealander that invented the Jet Boat in 1953. This is a 360 degree high speed turn that some people wish to tick off their bucket list and is completely optional for all.
    You have now experienced New Zealand’s only Mountain to sea jet boat safari, visited a UNESCO World Heritage site and experienced life as it was untouched 1000’s of years ago. Once you disembark your guide will recommend other unique points in the area to visit if you have a desire to stay a little longer.
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    Reviewed July 19, 2018

    Booked this as a surprise for my husbands birthday and it was lots of fun and very informative. Very cold but Wayne made sure that we were well protected from Weather and danger! Well worth the moneyMore

    Date of experience: March 2018
    Thank HollyFan
    Ruth-Wayne, Owner at Waiatoto River Safari, responded to this reviewResponded August 3, 2018

    So pleased you had a great time. The big woollen jackets are certainly a great thing to take along if it is cold, which it sometimes can be, since we go up into the Mountains. We always suggest to dress well, with layers, but we...More

    Reviewed January 19, 2018

    This was possibly one of our most memorable activities on the South Island. Ruth was the consummate guide and jet boat pilot. The trip was a blast but was also educational. Being a passenger on the jet boat was a lot of fun. Absolutely breathtaking...More

    Date of experience: January 2018
    1  Thank Phil-Lenna W
    Ruth-Wayne, Owner at Waiatoto River Safari, responded to this reviewResponded January 20, 2018

    Thanks team for your very complimentary comments. We both really enjoy meeting people and showing off our stunning back yard. The jet boat is an amazing craft and is really the best way to access the remote river. Enjoy the rest of NZ. Kind regards,...More

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