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Whale Watch Kaikoura Weekly Update - 22 May 2017

We had it all over the weekend – sunshine, wild wind, sleet, warmth, cold and beautiful new snow on the Kaikoura ranges. Despite the conditions over the weekend in the days leading up we had some great tours with sightings of semi-resident sperm whales Manu and Tiaki and hen time allowed we also saw dusky dolphins, Hector’s dolphins, NZ fur seals and marine birds. 

Whale Watch Kaikoura Weekly Update - 15th May 2017

What we love about whale watching is that you never know what to expect from one trip to the next with no one trip being the same. We were fortunate enough to see not only sperm whales last week but we also had a pod of Orca pass through. Not the usual time of the year to be seeing Orca but always thankful when we do get to see these beautiful creatures. Dolphins, NZ fur seals and various species of marine birds were also sighted on our tours.

Whale Watch Kaikoura Weekly Update - 8th May 2017

We have had some fantastic trips over the last week. Semi-resident sperm whales Tiaki, Manu and MatiMati being the stars of the show along with guest appearances from a minke whale, humpback whale and blue whale as they passed through Kaikoura. Dusky dolphins, Hector’s dolphins, NZ fur seals and many different marine bird species were also sighted on our tours.

Whale Watch Kaikoura Weekly Update - 1st May 2017

Over the weekend we had wonderful sightings of sperm whales, dusky dolphins, fur seals and a juvenile humpback whale. This humpback whale stunned both passengers and crew alike by breaching alongside the boat around 20 times… This is not something we get to see every day so when it does happen you can imagine even the crew are excited! 

Whale Watch Weekly Update - 24th April 2017

Autumn is such a beautiful time of the year with not just the stunning colours that come with this season but also the calm days we can get out at sea along with fantastic sightings. We were able to see sperm whales, pilot whales, a humpback whale and various species of dolphins as well as NZ fur seals and marine birds out on our tours last week.

Whale Watch Weekly Update - 18th April 2017

We hope you all had a wonderful time over the Easter break with family and friends. Over the weekend we were able to take out some very successful whale watching trips with sightings over sperm whales, a humpback whale, dusky, common and Hector’s dolphins as well as NZ fur seals and marine birds.

Whale Watch Kaikoura Weekly Update - 11th April 2017

It was an interesting week weather wise with a lot of rain which unfortunately closed all access into Kaikōura for a time, the road crews worked hard though and managed to get them open again rather quickly much to the delight of locals and guests alike.

We had fantastic sightings when we were able to sail with sperm whales, a couple of humpback whales and even a blue whale sighted. We also managed to sight common, dusky and Hector’s dolphins along with NZ fur seals and marine birds.

Whale Watch Kaikoura Weekly Update - 3 April 2017

Kaikōura truly is a marine mecca. We have had the opportunity over the last week is see sperm whales, a pod of orca passing through along with a humpback whale which seems to enjoy hanging around Kaikōura at the moment. We were also able to see dusky, common & Hector’s dolphins as well as NZ fur seals and various marine birds.

Whale Watch Kaikoura Weekly Update - 27 March 2017

Over the last week we have had around 3 to 4 sperm whales feeding close inshore which has made for some fantastic sightings. There has also been a humpback whale visiting Kaikōura over the last couple of weeks which has been making itself known on our tours also much to our crew and customers delight. Dolphins, NZ fur seals and marine birds have also regular viewings on our tours.

State Highway 1 South of Kaikoura Closure Notice

For guests traveling to Kaikoura please take note that State Highway 1 South of Kaikoura will be closed between 8pm on Sunday 26 March to 7am on Tuesday 4th April. Kaikoura will continue to be accessible via the Inland Road Route 24/7. Thanks for you patience as crews work to make the highway safer for all.

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This week has brought with it some crazy weather for us here in Kaikōura – with a lot of the Kaikōura District resembling a snow globe! The Kaikōura Ranges have seen a healthy amount of snow, making for a wonderful backdrop for our guests’ photos over the weekend. Last week we spotted semi-resident Sperm Whales Tiaki, Tutu and Aotearoa deep diving in the Hikurangi Trench. When time allowed, our tours have also seen pods of Dusky and Hector’s dolphins, New Zealand fur seals and various marine birds including the Giant Northern Petrel and the Black Browed Mollymawk. 

A few Humpback whales decided to pay Kaikōura an extra special visit on Tuesday – making whale watching possible from the beaches of South Bay! These humpbacks, who are currently making their way North from Antarctica to warmer waters, lived up to their playful and inquisitive reputation and put on a real show for people on their afternoon walks and lucky kayakers passing by.

NZ Travel blogger Bare Kiwi joined us on our Sunday’s whale watching tour for a ‘whale of a time’ with our semi-resident Sperm Whale Aotearoa. For the next six months Bare Kiwi will be somewhat of a local to Kaikōura so be sure to follow him on Instagram to keep up with the activities he gets up to here in Kaikōura. Check out this cool photo he snapped from our morning tour!

It was World Orca Day on Friday so we thought we’d post a wee throwback picture below of Summer 2016/2017 with the Orca. Did you know that even though Orca are referred to as Killer Whale’s, they are actually part of the dolphin family? The name ‘Killer Whale’ originated from the Orca being the only known predators to whales, mostly the young and injured. 

We are half way into the July school holidays here in New Zealand, are you still looking for ways to fill up the rest of the break? Winter is a great time to visit us here at Whale Watch, especially when children travel for free! We are offering a July School Holiday Special, so please consider taking the time to visit Kaikōura with your family and seeing our spectacular marine life.

REGULAR, SCHEDULED CLOSURES OF STATE HIGHWAY 1 SOUTH OF KAIKOURA

There is a possibility of short delays and it will be 30km/hour through parts of the route. Inland Route 70 remains open 24 hours a day 7 days a week.

As we enter into the cooler winter months it is a good reminder to take extra care on the roads and to check the NZTA website for road updates before traveling.

Progress is continuing to be made on the repair of the Kaikōura Marina, with the modified trailer and public jetty now being used for launching our vessel Tohora. This is due to tidal restrictions and repair work as a result of the coastline lifting by +1.0m. All our berths have now been removed. This is an end of an era but we are excited to see our new and improved marina once it is completed! The use of the modified trailer and public jetty will continue until further notice. It is anticipated that the Kaikōura Marina will be fully restored in October 2017.

Currently our available tour times are based around the tide times on the day and may differ from the tour times originally advertised, please bear with us as we continue to work toward being fully operational again. For an update on the tour times available, please contact our Customer Service team directly either by email on res@whalewatch.co.nz, phone +64 3 319 6767 or free phone 0800 655 121 (within NZ) and they will be able to help you with your inquiry.  Please note we are operating at a reduced capacity in the interim with up to 3 tours available per day. Please contact our team prior to arriving in Kaikōura to secure a space on one of our tours and to save disappointment.

KAIKOURA BUSINESS UPDATE

Kaikōura is open for business. For latest updates on accommodation, restaurant and retail information please contact the team at the Kaikōura I-Site who will be able to help you find what suits your needs during your stay in Kaikōura. 

TRANSPORT UPDATE

IntercityHasslefree Tours & Canterbury Leisure Tours have daily services from Christchurch to Kaikōura with a return service from Christchurch, as well as Kiwi Experience now having the option of a day tour out of Christchurch for their travellers.

Progress on the work being done on roads (along with harbour repairs) can be found on this dedicated KAIKOURA EARTHQUAKE RESPONSE page provided by the team at NZTA. This page is updated weekly on Friday. Work is also starting to take place on the railway network, please be aware and take care when using rail crossings.

The team at Whale Watch Kaikoura.