Things to do in
Kaikoura Peninsula

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Our most recommended things to do in Kaikoura Peninsula

Kaikoura: Half-Day Wildlife Kayaking Tour

1. Kaikoura: Half-Day Wildlife Kayaking Tour

Begin your adventure in the town of Kaikoura where you will meet your professional guides. Receive a short safety briefing and paddling lesson before being allocated all the necessary equipment for the tour. Head out on the waters of the beautiful ocean surrounding the city. Kayak along the Kaikoura coastline, where you will take in the magnificent views of sheer cliff faces, craggy rocks, and mountain ranges while searching for chance encounters with Dusky Dolphins and Blue Penguins. Experience the excitement of watching cute fur seals ducking, weaving, and diving around your kayak. During your tour, you will have the opportunity to paddle gently along with these beautiful animals as they swim around the Kaikoura Peninsula hunting for their favourite feed of octopus. This tour is suitable for all ages and abilities while operating year-round, and doesn't require any previous kayaking experience. Encounter a diverse range of wildlife on the New Zealand coastline and see some of the country's most beautiful animals.

Kaikoura: Guided Family Kayaking Adventure

2. Kaikoura: Guided Family Kayaking Adventure

Hop into a kayak and paddle around the beautiful coastal waters of New Zealand for up to 2 hours. Take in the unique landscapes as you go or enjoy the thrill of getting right up close to New Zealand's unique marine life. Spot the curious fur seals swimming and diverse range of birds, fish, and more. Listen to a short briefing explaining how to gear up, paddle, and steer your kayak. Then with full confidence, embark on this adventure. The highly stable sea kayaks allow children to safely enjoy the kayaking experience with an adult paddling right behind them. Professional, qualified guides will remain close to you throughout the kayaking time. Take photos of the amazing mountainous region around you, absorb the sheer sublime rocks, and meet some playful New Zealand Fur Seals.

Kaikoura: Sunset Kayaking Tour

3. Kaikoura: Sunset Kayaking Tour

Join your guide as you kayak during sunset to experience the stunning glow of the seaward-facing Kaikoura Mountains. Have the chance to watch seals dive and maneuver around and under your kayak as the sunsets. Paddle with them as they swim around the peninsula hunting for octopus. Along the way keep an eye out for blue penguins or albatross and have a possible encounter with dusky dolphins. Your kayak is enclosed, safe, stable, and easily steered using a rudder. It's fast on the water, but still keeps you warm and dry. Your qualified and experienced local guide will teach you how to handle the kayak and paddle you through areas used years ago by local Maori and early whalers. Enjoy watching the light change as the day draws to an end.

New Zealand: 11 Day South Island Tour

4. New Zealand: 11 Day South Island Tour

Set off on an adventure-filled 11-day tour to discover and explore New Zealand's South Island with accommodation and some activities included. Day 1 - Wellington to Kaikoura Travel across the Cook Strait, one of the most enjoyable and beautiful ferry journeys in the world. Go for a wine tasting in the Marlborough region and visit the Kaikoura Seal colony. Day 2 - Kaikoura to Christchurch Hike the Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway. Enjoy the amazing panoramic views of Kaikoura and discover hidden gems of Christchurch in a city street art trail. Day 3 - Christchurch to Lake Tekapo Marvel at the stars at the Dark Sky Project, Lake Tekapo. Visit The Church of the Good Shepherd. Hike up Mount John for panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and lakes. Day 4 - Lake Tekapo to Mount Cook (return) Spend the day at Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park before Hiking the Hooker Valley Track to Hooker Lake. Day 5 - Lake Tekapo to Queenstown Delight your palate with a buffet dinner with panoramic views of Queenstown at the Skyline Stratosphere Restaurant (at your own expense). Day 6 - Queenstown free day Have the whole day to yourself and explore the wonders of Queenstown. Day 7 - Queenstown to Glenorchy day trip Cruise past the late, soaking up the views, and onto Glenorchy where you'll do some short walks. Day 8 - Queenstown to Wanaka Hike Roys Peak (6-hour return) and take in breathtaking views over Lake Wānaka (only accessible from November to May). Mt Iron hike (alternative to Roys Peak); provides 360-degree views of The Pisa range. Visit the famous Wanaka tree. Day 9 - Wanaka to Franz Josef Thunder Creek falls in Mt Aspiring National Park. Visit Lake Matheson, famous for mirror views of Aoraki/Mount Cook. Day 10 - Franz Josef Design and carve your own Greenstone jewelry in a West Coast workshop (included) and walk the Glacier valley walk in Franz Josef. Day 11 - Franz Josef to Christchurch Take a scenic hike across Arthurs Pass, walk the Castle Hill track, and admire Devils Punchbowl waterfalls.

Kaikoura: Scenic Helicopter Flight & Gin Distillery Tasting

5. Kaikoura: Scenic Helicopter Flight & Gin Distillery Tasting

Relax, sit back and enjoy a scenic flight around the Peninsula & Kaikōura Seaward mountain ranges taking in the breath taking views from above of the Pacific Ocean and Kaikōura coastline. Daniel our chief pilot and CEO will educate you on the surroundings and land you on Mt Fyffe. Here you can inhale the fresh mountain air and meet New Zealand’s newest gin maker Justine Schroder, owner of Mt Fyffe Distillery. Justine will pour her premium gin and tell you the story as to how the award-winning gin was launched. Mt Fyffe Distillery is a small boutique distillery set on the foothills of Mt Fyffe, Kaikōura. Using botanics sourced from around their family farm and the local environment, has led Justine to create two distinct blends of small batch artisan London dry gin; Woolshed Gin & Shearwater Gin This package also includes a complimentary 375ml bottle of Woolshed Gin or Shearwater Gin. 18+ only.

From Aukland: 18-Day North & South Island Tour with Guide

6. From Aukland: 18-Day North & South Island Tour with Guide

Day 1 - Auckland to Hot Water Beach •Explore Cathedral Cove •Relax at Hot Water Beach; by digging your own spa pool. Day 2 - Hot Water Beach to Waitomo •Hike through the Karangahake Gorge •Magical Glowworm Caves in Waitomo Day 3 - Waitomo to Rotorua •Hike through the Ruakuri Reserve •Spend the evening and night at a Māori village where you'll learn about the history and culture of the locals. •Opportunity to visit Hobbiton (not included) •Immerse yourself into Maori culture and history by exploring Rotorua. Day 4 - Rotorua to Tongariro National Park via Taupo •Walk the Huka Falls walkway •Soak under a waterfall or in the naturally heated rock pools at Spa Park. Day 5 - Tongariro National Park •Hike the Tongariro Crossing; one of New Zealands best one day hikes (shuttle not included) •Go skiing or snowboarding on Mount Ruapheu (equipment not included) Day 6 - Tongariro National Park to River Valley •Hike the Taranaki Falls walk •Spend the day at River Valley Lodge; nestled on the Rangitikei River •Go white water rafting on the Rangitikei River or Horse trekking (not included) •Enjoy an organic group roast dinner. Day 7 - River Valley to Wellington •Buzzing city vibes in the capital Wellington Day 8 - Wellington to Kaikoura •Inter-Island transport across the Cook Strait; one of the most enjoyable and beautiful ferry journeys in the world •Wine tasting in the Marlborough region •Visit Kaikoura Seal colony. Day 9 - Kaikoura to Christchurch •Hike the Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway •Enjoy the amazing panaramic views of Kaikoura •Discover hidden gems of Christchurch in a city street art trail Day 10 - Christchurch to Lake Tekapo •Marvel at the stars at the Dark Sky Project, Lake Tekapo. •Visit the The Church of the Good Shepherd. •Hike up Mount John for panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and lakes. Day 11 - Lake Tekapo to Mount Cook (return) •Spend the day at Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park. •Hike the Hooker Valley track to Hooker Lake. Day 12 - Lake Tekapo to Queenstown •A buffet dinner with panaramic views of Queenstown at the Skyline Stratosphere Restaurant. Day 13 - Queenstown free day - Have the whole day to yourself and explore the wonders of Queenstown. Day 14 - Queenstown to Glenorchy day trip - Today we'll cruise past the lake, soaking up the views and onto Glenorchy where we will do some short walks. Day 15 - Queenstown to Wanaka •Roys Peak hike (6 hour return); take in breathtaking views over Lake Wānaka (only accessible November to May) •Mt Iron hike (alternative to Roys Peak); providing 360-degree views of the The Pisa range. •Visit the famous Wanaka tree Day 16 - Wanaka to Franz Josef •Thunder Creek falls in Mt Aspiring National Park. •Lake Matheson; famous for mirror views of Aoraki/Mount Cook. Day 17 - Franz Josef •Design and carve your own Greenstone jewelry in a West Coast workshop (included) •Walk the Glacier valley walk in Franz Josef Day 18 - Franz Josef to Christchurch •Scenic hikes across Arthurs Pass •Walk the Castle Hill track. •Devils Punchbowl waterfalls.

From Wellington: 7-Day South Island Tour with Wine Tasting

7. From Wellington: 7-Day South Island Tour with Wine Tasting

Unlock the beauty of the South Island with the convenience of a multi-day guided tour. All activities are included unless states otherwise. Day 1 - Wellington to Kaikoura Kick off the adventure with one of the most beautiful inter-island crossings in the world, the Cook Straight. Arrive at the top of the South Island and journey through the Marlborough region, home to endless rolling vineyards. Stop for a tasting along the way to sample some local Kiwi cuisine. Day 2 - Kaikoura to Christchurch Choose between a lie-in, or, for the more adventurous, an ocean excursion (extra cost) to try your luck spotting dolphins, whales, albatrosses, and more. Around mid-morning, head up the Kaikoura Peninsula to walk among a large seal colony. Next up is the diverse city of Christchurch. Here, take a walking tour of the city to learn about its street art, see the blooming botanical gardens, and learn about the city's recent history. Day 3 - Christchurch to Lake Tekapo Hit the road and cruise into Mackenzie Country, home to Lake Tekapo. Visit the stone Church of the Good Shepherd and admire Lake Tekapo's blue waters framed with colorful lupins. As night falls, visit the Dark Sky Project to learn about the importance of preserving dark skies and take a peek at all that lies above. Day 4 - Lake Tekapo to Wanaka via Mount Cook Cruise past Lake Pukaki (you'll know how it got its nickname The Powerade Factory when you see it) and head for Mount Cook village. Take some scenic hikes in the National Park with stops to soak up the mountain views. Here choose to view the Tasman Glacier by helicopter or take a scenic flight through the Mt. Cook National Park. From mid-morning, continue to traverse through the National Park through Lindis Pass and on to Wanaka. Day 5 - Wanaka to Queenstown Have the morning to hike Wanaka's famous Roys Peak, snap "That Wanaka Tree," or climb Mount Iron. For the more daring in the group, there’s the option to experience a via Ferrata Wild Wire or hit up the lakeside trails on a mountain bike. Later, sit back and relax on the bus while viewing the scenery of the Crown ranges on the way to the adrenaline-fuelled Queenstown. End the day with a trip up the Gondola for a dinner overlooking Queenstown. Day 6 - Queenstown free dayTake a day to explore the city with lunch and activities on your own. Day 7 - Queenstown to Glenorchy Day Trip Head out into the heartlands of Otago to the picturesque town of Glenorchy to experience a scenic landscape.

New Zealand North & South Island: 14-Day Tour

8. New Zealand North & South Island: 14-Day Tour

Day 1 - Auckland to Hot Water Beach Depart Auckland and head south-east to the pristine beaches of the Coromandel and the world-famous Cathedral Cove. Kayak around this stunning coastline (optional activity) and have the opportunity to visit Hot Water Beach; a unique surf beach where if you catch the tide right, you can dig a hole in the sand to create your own personal spa pool. Day 2 - Hot Water Beach to Waitomo Venture into the enchanting Karangahake Gorge nestled among the Kaimai Ranges, for a hike amongst the walkways and old mining tunnels. Next, head over to Waitomo for a magical tour of the world-famous glow-worm caves. You will also have the opportunity to experience a Black Water Rafting trip. Day 3 - Waitomo to Rotorua Start the day with a walk through the Ruakuri Reserve. Pass through The Shire of Hobbiton where you’ll have the opportunity to discover the Hobbiton Movie Set (optional activity) before rolling on through to Rotorua; a mystical land of bubbling mud pools, rocketing geysers, and natural hot springs. Optional activities are luging down the SkyLine, White Water Rafting, Hells Gate, Mountain biking through the Redwoods, Zorb, Wai-o-tapu, Polynesian Spa, or National Kiwi Hatchery. Day 4 - Rotorua free day and Tamaki Maori Village Explore the geothermal reserve of Te Puia, with New Zealand’s largest geyser, and a chance to see a real live Kiwi bird. Visit the Tamaki Māori Village and be immersed in the traditions and cultural values of the Māori people. Participate in a pōwhiri (welcoming ceremony), learn about the history of the marae (village) and the Rotorua-area from a local Māori guide before feasting on some top kai food from the hāngi pit. Gather around a blazing bonfire and enjoy listening to Māori myths and legends before relaxing in a private forest spa pool and retiring for the night in a traditional carved whare moe (sleeping house). Day 5 - Tamaki Maori Village to Taupo Day 6 - Taupo free day Day 7 - Taupo to Wellington Day 8 - Wellington to Kaikoura Day 9 - Kaikoura to Christchurch Day 10 - Christchurch to Lake Tekapo Day 11 - Lake Tekapo to Wanaka via Mount Cook Day 12 - Wanaka to Queenstown Day 13 - Queenstown free day Day 14 - Queenstown to Glenorchy day trip

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What people are saying about Kaikoura Peninsula

Overall rating

4.9 / 5

based on 26 reviews

That the most wonderful time. Ben our guide was an absolute gem & made the whole experience thoroughly enjoyable. We saw seals, penguins & many varieties of sea birds. Our guide was extremely knowledgeable & I certainly learnt a lot. Would thoroughly recommend it to anyone visiting Akaroa

Had a great experience and a very nice time with our guide Sophie. Thank you for that! Nice chatting, lots of interesting facts about wildlife and the area, meeting some seals, penguins and even got a glimpse at a passing pod of dolphins.

The day was just great. My group had a great guide (Emma). Don't worry if you are going on this adventure alone and / or have no experience with a kayak ... Emma will show you everything and explain how it works!

This was a wonderful experience. We are novice kayakers but handled the trip quite well. Beautiful trip, saw sosme wildlife, had a great guide and saw a beautiful sunset over the magnificent mountains.

I really enjoyed my kayaking tour! We got to see lots of seals and our guide was great. Would definitely recommend.