We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Swimming with Wild Dolphins in Akaroa

  • Swim with the rare and beautiful wild Hector's dolphins in a protected harbor
  • Enjoy a 2-hour cruise by a heated jet powered catamaran
  • Receive a 30-minute briefing on how to interact with the dolphins before spending 1-hour with these marine mammals
Swimming with Wild Dolphins in Akaroa
From $59.97
Check Availability
  • Overview
  • What to Expect
  • Important Information
  • Reviews
  • Q&A
Select Date and Travelers
Dolphin Swim at 11:30amMost Popular
2-hr dolphin swim in Akaroa including wetsuit, mask and snorkel hire. Not recommended for children aged under 9 years
Dolphin Swim at 1:30pm
2-hr dolphin swim in Akaroa including wetsuit, mask and snorkel hire. Not recommended for children aged under 9 years
Dolphin Swim at 8:30am
2-hr dolphin swim in Akaroa including wetsuit, mask and snorkel hire. Not recommended for children aged under 9 years
Show 3 more
Swim with dolphins at Akaroa Harbour, where Hector’s dolphins — found only in New Zealand — visit the waters of the Banks Peninsula. Cruising the sheltered harbor by jet-powered catamaran so you can swim up close, you’ll learn from the highly trained crew how to interact safely with the world’s smallest and rarest dolphins. Just 10 passengers are permitted per vessel, ensuring an intimate experience in a small group. Wetsuit, masks and snorkel are provided, along with a hot shower on board.
What to Expect
Start your swim-with-dolphins tour in New Zealand’s South Island by climbing aboard a jet-powered catamaran at Akaroa Harbour — the flooded crater of an extinct volcano surrounded by awe-inspiring volcanic cliffs. During a briefing and instruction on how to interact responsibly with the Hector’s dolphins, learn what to expect prior to your water adventure. Then don your provided wetsuit, mask, and snorkel, and slip into the tranquil harbor to observe these magnificent marine mammals up close.

Your highly trained crew ensures your safety on a memorable dolphin swim during this 3-hour tour, popular due to the limited number of passengers permitted per departure (limited to 10). The covered vessel has no propellers, making it safer for you and the dolphins.

After your dolphin swim, you can warm up quickly in the heated cabin or take a hot shower, available on board.

This tour operator was the first cruise boat company in the world to get the coveted Green Globe 21, an international program to ensure best environmental practices.
Write a ReviewReviews (63)

1 - 5 of 35 reviews

Reviewed 3 weeks ago
Highlight of my trip to New Zealand!

We were lucky enough to see around 10 different dolphins during our swim. The experience of getting so close to these incredible animals in the water is nothing short of incredible. I was left in awe of these beautiful animals while in and out of...More

Thank Nancy3555
Reviewed 5 weeks ago via mobile
Once in a lifetime experience 🐬

We had a fantastic time on our black cat swimming with dolphins cruise. We were very impressed that they still ran the cruise in slightly adverse weather and with only 2 of us booked on. We had two skippers; Chris and Julian who were clearly...More

Thank Imogen S
Reviewed June 17, 2018

We swam with the dolphins over the weekend and it was seriously amazing! Alister and the crew were so great and we had the best time. I 12/10 recommend this to anyone visiting and in NZ!

Thank maryoutram
Reviewed June 4, 2018
Amazing encounter with the hector dolphins!

I had an amazing experience on 2nd June 2018. It was a slightly damp and cloudy day but it did not stop us from having such a good time. The counter staff was really friendly, greeting me and making sure everything was set. Alister got...More

1  Thank Claudeer
Reviewed June 2, 2018
Didn't meet expectations

We arrived early morning on a rainy day. Many people cancelled and didn't show up but we went anyway, in a quite small group. The stuff wasn't that friendly, it was cold and grey and we were not guaranteed to see dolphins (which is normal)....More

Thank nomadgirl365
Questions & Answers
Ask a question
April 8, 2018|
Response from Julian D | Reviewed this property |
Unfortunately I'm no dolphin expert but normally the weather is calmer earlier in the morning and the wind strengthens as that day goes on. Have a brilliant swim!