New Zealand’s most unique whale and dolphin watching safari departs direct from downtown Auckland. Enjoy a 4.5-hour cruise on board the luxurious ‘Dolphin Explorer’ as you explore the beautiful Hauraki Gulf Marine Park in search of encounters with its amazing and diverse marine wildlife.
Your safari departs from the Viaduct Basin, just a short walk from all the major hotels in Auckland Central. Jump on board the 65-foot (20-metre) catamaran and settle in as you head out to explore the beautiful Hauraki Gulf Marine Park, one of the most abundant and diverse marine parks in the world.
From the large open deck, enjoy views of famous Auckland landmarks like the Harbour Bridge, North Head and Devonport, and volcanic Rangitoto Island, as you watch out for orca and dolphins known to frequent the inner Waitematā Harbour.
As the crew provides knowledgeable commentary, marine science experts conduct biological studies and invite you to join interactive research activities.
Because you’re venturing into a wild, natural environment, every trip is different and the marine wildlife encountered varies from day to day. Typically, you will encounter Bryde’s whales and common dolphins, but you may also meet pygmy blue whales, New Zealand fur seals, sharks, manta rays, turtles and up to 26 species of seabirds – including the little blue penguin.
As you return to Auckland, sit back, take advantage of our licensed café and bar, and enjoy the island views. And if you’re ready to learn more, there’s an optional research presentation so you can learn more about the wildlife you’ve encountered during your safari.