Wheelchair Policy

Can Whale Watch take passengers in wheel chairs?

Whale Watch Kaikōura has two vessel types ranging between 24m to 18m in length. All seating is in the main cabin with viewing platforms around the lower deck and the upper deck.

Vessel - Te Ao Marama & Wheketere 24m

Vessels - Tohora & Wawahia 18m

All seating is in the main cabin with viewing platforms around the lower deck and the upper deck.

The first two rows on each side of the vessel are ideal places in which we would place people of limited mobility, they are close to the side door and easiest for us to monitor and keep the windows clear.

At check in We will issue our guests boarding pass and have them go to the marina and meet with their crew early so that we can get them on to the vessel without other guests there and have them all comfortable before they arrive. When and where possible we do ask that someone traveling with our wheel chair guest is able to assist with carrying them on to the vessel – we have a carry chair for this purpose. There are toilet facilities available at our booking office, at the marina and also on our vessel. We also have life jackets placed under each seat on our vessels with the donning procedures outlined during our safety presentation.

It is recommended to take precautions for sea sickness. We have herbal medication available at our Retail Store.

We then walk along the deck to the front door where there is a step into the boat where we will then place our guests comfortably in their seat for the tour.

Our captains do their best at all times to provide the best possible sightings of marine life when we have a wheel chair passenger on board with us, but as I am sure you can appreciate when working with nature there are times when this may not to go to plan. Our captains also reserve the right to place a mobility restriction on our tours if they deem sea conditions unsuitable.

Download for further details on:

Wheel Chair Accessibility 


Whale Watch Kaikōura has a Gold Trax Seal of Approval, New Zealand’s benchmark of Adaptive Adventure Travel & Inclusive Tourism.

The seal indicates that the company is willing and able to provide a tailored adaptive experience for different abilities when possible.

Find other inclusive tourism operators in New Zealand here



We are undertaking a number of building renovations at our Whaleway Station terminal to improve the visitor experience. 

  • Our main entry point to the building is closed for renovations and enlargement, access into the building is via the seafront side of the building (this is sign posted)
  • Our public toilets are closed for renovation and enlargement, we currently have portaloo's available (these are sign posted)

We apologies for any inconvenience caused by these building renovations.