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.

“Whale Watching from the Air”

Kaikoura Helicopters
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: <1 hour
Owner description: Kaikoura is world renowned for its whale watching – it also boasts some of the most spectacular scenery New Zealand has to offer. Helping you experience this is Kaikoura Helicopters, the most experienced aerial whale watching company in the world. We can have you lifting off from our centrally located heli – pads and within minutes be in the spectacular environment that plays host to the magnificent Sperm Whale. From the comfort of our helicopter, experience this ultimate vantage point, viewing the entire whale from head to tail. Our exclusive alpine flights allow you to get up close and personal with some of the highest mountains in New Zealand. Land at altitude amongst the stunning Kaikoura Seaward Ranges and encounter 360 - degree views of this unique and rugged coastline. We also offer scenic flights, heli hikes, heli picnics, heli rafting, heli biking, charters, nationwide transfers, weddings, hunting, film and photography, gift vouchers, and more! Flying everyday!
Reviewed January 28, 2013

We had planned to try and see the whales while we were in Kaikoura, and plumped initially for the boat trip. Although we saw a sperm whale at close quarters on that trip the experience was slightly unsatisfying, so after discussing the trip with the wonderfully helpful staff at Kaikoura Helicopters, we eventually decided to take this trip as well. We were not disappointed. The heli trip was worth every last dollar, and the views we had of the whales was breathtaking. Our pilots - we were in separate helicopters - were so informative and willing to help. They just wanted to make the trip really special, and it was in every way.

We were lucky - we were able to see the whales both from a boat and from the air. If you only have one chance to see them, go for the helicopter every time!

Thank Richard S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kaikoura H, Front Office Manager at Kaikoura Helicopters, responded to this reviewResponded March 6, 2013

Thank you for taking the time to write such a great review. We are stoked your experience with us felt special and that you enjoyed viewing the whales from the helicopter. It is great to hear that you had the opportunity to see the whales from two perspectives. We couldn't agree more - seeing the entire whale from head to tail from above is the ultimate:) Thanks again and best wishes from the Kaikoura Helicopters Team.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (122)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language
All reviews
"minute flight"
in 8 reviews
"helicopter tour"
in 6 reviews
"whale watching"
in 20 reviews
"see whales"
in 10 reviews
"paid nzd"
in 2 reviews
"safety briefing"
in 6 reviews
"whole team"
in 2 reviews
"new zealand"
in 7 reviews
"awesome experience"
in 3 reviews
"blue whale"
in 2 reviews
"sea sickness"
in 5 reviews
"pod of dolphins"
in 3 reviews
"aaron"
in 15 reviews
"chopper"
in 6 reviews
"mount"
in 6 reviews
"pilot"
in 53 reviews
"tail"
in 14 reviews
Filter

92 - 96 of 122 reviews

Reviewed January 26, 2013

Wow, what an amazing find.
I just got off my Ship, went to the tourism office. They took a deposit and off I went for a breathing Whale watching Helicopter ride. This company is par excellent! A darling bunch of girls were there to have lunch with Daddy. It made for a precious wait of just a few moments. They have four sparkling Helicopters. The entire family are affiliated with them. Lee, our pilot gave the most informative briefing as to what we were to see. And explained how perfect they can time the whales surfacing. We hovered over a huge Sperm Whale until it dove with tail waving goodbye. And then straight over to a school of Killer Whales. They communicate with Captions of other ships to give them a heads up as to where they need to be.
The extra time was appreciated. They even drove us back to the dock for our tender. What more can you ask for? Thank you all for a very interesting day in Kaikoura.

Thank Stephanie B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kaikoura H, Front Office Manager at Kaikoura Helicopters, responded to this reviewResponded March 6, 2013

Hi Stephanie, thank you very much for your lovely review. It sounds like you had an amazing whale watching experience with us. Seeing Orca passing through the area is exciting, we are pleased the added time allowed a good sighting of them too:) Yes, Lee's girls are just so cute, they will make brilliant wee members of the team one day. We hope you enjoyed your journey on the cruise ship and thanks again for your positive feedback. Regards from the Kaikoura Helicopters Team:)

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 25, 2013 via mobile

We booked the boat for whale watching and it was cancelled due to the sea condition (far too windy today). We only have a day at Kaikoura but all tours were cancelled. We thought we should give it a shot even the price is relatively high, so we went on the helicopter. In fact, it was sunny but very windy, we were lucky enough to get on a heli.

We saw a sperm whale and loads of dolphins, we also landed (we choose a 45 or 50 mins ride which include one landing). the view was spectacular and stunning.

The pilot was communicating to someone to get the whale location which is good so we have more chance to see the whale.

Thank WY_KWAN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kaikoura H, Front Office Manager at Kaikoura Helicopters, responded to this reviewResponded March 6, 2013

Hi, thank you for your great feedback. Your coastal whale watch flight sounds awesome. Arn't the dolphins just amazing to see from the air - you really appreciate the size of the pod. It is good to hear you enjoyed the stunning vista's from our landing location too. Thanks again. Regards from the Kaikoura Helicopters Team.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 23, 2013

We were short on time and wanted to try a different perspective as up until now we'd always been on marine cruises rather than doing it by helicopter. It was pricey but it was worth it particularly since whales only surface for 5 or so minutes before diving down for food. The company keep tabs of whales whereabouts via GPS so you stand a good chance of seeing one on your trip. We were extremely impressed with the knowledgeable and professional staff. I would recommend this trip - it s definitely a good way to see whales.

Thank ali3smith
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kaikoura H, Front Office Manager at Kaikoura Helicopters, responded to this reviewResponded March 6, 2013

Thank you for your awesome feedback. Yes, flying on demand is definitely a huge advantage. We like to give our passengers the best possible chance of seeing a whale, so the ground work is very important:) We are lucky to have Sperm Whales diving reasonably consistently here in the Kaikoura Canyon. Thanks again. Kind Regards from the Kaikoura Helicopters Team:)

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
See more reviews
Reviewed January 23, 2013

I had the most amazing time flying with Kaikoura Helicopters! My family and I were in Kaikoura for a couple of days and were hanging out to see some whales. We went on the boat which was good but does not compare to seeing these beautiful sea giants from the air. You can see the whole whale from head to tail and can relax without having to worry about being sea sick... The helicopters are very smooth and the pilot Aaron we had was very skilled and just a genuinly nice guy who was very informative and made us feel comfortable. We saw two Sperm whales on the surface and Aaron let us know when they were about to dive so we could get those magical photos of the tail! We then went and saw hundreds of playful dolphins jumping, flipping and racing each other. What a superb flight, we definately recommend it to everyone!!

1  Thank KyleGreggor74
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kaikoura H, Front Office Manager at Kaikoura Helicopters, responded to this reviewResponded March 6, 2013

Thank you so much for your wicked review. We love your review title. Yes, we totally agree with you, there is no other way to see these amazing creatures of the deep! And to avoid a belly ache for the day, is an added bonus:) We are stoked to hear you all saw 2 whales and hundreds of dolphins. I bet you have some nice photos! I will pass your positive feedback on to Aaron too. Thanks again and best wishes from the Kaikoura Helicopters Team:)

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Kaikoura Helicopters also viewed

Kaikoura, Canterbury Region
Kaikoura, Canterbury Region
 
Kaikoura, Canterbury Region
Kaikoura, Canterbury Region
 

Been to Kaikoura Helicopters? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing