Tours and Tickets

Auckland Dolphin and Whale Watching Eco-Safari Cruise provided by Auckland Whale & Dolphin Safari

Auckland Dolphin and Whale Watching Eco-Safari Cruise

Auckland Dolphin and Whale Watching Eco-Safari Cruise
4.5
Book in advance
from
$99.00
per adult
Free Cancellation up to 24 hours in advance
Reserve now & pay later: Save your spot free of charge with flexible booking.
Travel safe during COVID-19
What you can expect during your visit
Paid stay-at-home policy for staff with symptoms
Gear/equipment sanitised between use
Regularly sanitised high-traffic areas
What you can expect during your visit
Paid stay-at-home policy for staff with symptoms
Gear/equipment sanitised between use
Regularly sanitised high-traffic areas
Guides required to regularly wash hands
Hand sanitiser available to travellers and staff
Transportation vehicles regularly sanitised
Contactless payment for gratuities and add-ons
About
Search for whales, dolphins, and seabirds during a tour of the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park—it’s just a short boat ride from Auckland city’s Viaduct Harbour. You’ll board a luxury catamaran, custom-built as a marine mammal research vessel, and learn from the expertise of your crew. Enjoy an interactive half-day cruise.
Know before you go
  • Duration: 4h 30m
  • Mobile tickets accepted
  • Instant confirmation
Cancellation policy
  • For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.
Available languages
German, Chinese, Korean, Japanese, English, Chinese, French, Spanish
Know before you go
  • Duration: 4h 30m
  • Mobile tickets accepted
  • Instant confirmation
Available languages
German, Chinese, Korean, Japanese, English, Chinese, French, Spanish
Cancellation policy
  • For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.
Highlights
Half-day whale watching cruise in the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park
Learn from experts on board working to protect marine mammals
Each passenger contributes to important conservation efforts
Catamaran departs Viaduct Harbour in central Auckland
What to expect
Meet the boat crew at the New Zealand Maritime Museum at Viaduct Harbour, and depart aboard a custom-built 65-foot (20-meter) catamaran, comfortably appointed so you can best view up to six types of whales as well as dolphins and other marine life. Throughout your 4.5-hour cruise, the captain and guides entertain you with fascinating facts about the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park, home to five marine preserves and sprinkled with islands — it's considered one of the world’s most biologically diverse marine parks and home to some 23 different species. Hear about research conducted in partnerships with local marine scientists and discover which whales the crew tracks. They’ll point out sea mammals such as frequently spotted pods of bottlenose dolphins and Bryde’s whales, native to New Zealand. Be ready to snap photos of adorable blue penguins. Set your binoculars upon seabirds such as Australasian gannets, petrels, shearwaters and white-fronted terns soaring above or plunging into the sea. Afterward, the boat returns to Auckland’s Viaduct Harbour, where your tour ends. Please note: While wildlife viewings cannot be guaranteed, dolphins and whales are often swimming around these waters. In the event that you do not see any marine mammals during your trip, you can go again another day at no extra charge.
Need help booking?
Call the number below and use the product code: 6608AWDS
Call +1 855 275 5071
Important information
Inclusions
Local guide • Every ticket purchased contributes directly to Marine Mammal Conservation • Expert commentary/Interaction with our onboard Marine Research Scientists
Exclusions
Food and drinks (available to purchase) • Hotel pickup and drop-off
Duration
4h 30m
Departure details
New Zealand Maritime Museum, Corner of Quay and Hobson Street, Auckland CBD, Auckland 1140, New Zealand
Inclusions
Local guide • Every ticket purchased contributes directly to Marine Mammal Conservation • Expert commentary/Interaction with our onboard Marine Research Scientists
Exclusions
Food and drinks (available to purchase) • Hotel pickup and drop-off
Departure details
New Zealand Maritime Museum, Corner of Quay and Hobson Street, Auckland CBD, Auckland 1140, New Zealand
Duration
4h 30m
Return details
Returns to original departure point
Additional information
Confirmation will be received at time of booking
Advisable to dress in warm layers and weatherproof gear as weather can be unpredictable
Advisable to bring sun hat (with chin strap to secure it), sunscreen, sunglasses, camera, binoculars and flat-soled shoes
Wheelchair accessible
Stroller accessible
Service animals allowed
Near public transportation
Transportation is wheelchair accessible
Not recommended for pregnant travellers
IMPORTANT: Check in closes 15 minutes prior to stated departure time. Those passengers who are late risk losing their allocated seats.
Most travellers can participate
This experience requires good weather. If it’s cancelled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund
This experience requires a minimum number of travellers. If it’s cancelled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund
This tour/activity will have a maximum of 99 travellers
Popular mentions

4.5
1,063 reviews
Excellent
852
Very good
137
Average
37
Poor
12
Terrible
25

JHTauckland
Auckland, New Zealand21 contributions
Don't miss this trip!
Exceptional experience provided by a very knowledgeable crew out on the Hauraki Gulf. Comfortable ride with great places to observe from. Thank you all for a memorable experience out on the water watching those majestic animals.
Written 21 June 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
AnnaS_ETG
Kia Ora JHTauckland, Thank you for your 5 star review of your time out with us. It is great to hear that you had a memorable experience out there with our crew!
Written 27 June 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Glenn T
Auckland Central, New Zealand39 contributions
Seeking whales & dolphins
Feb 2021 • Family
Auckland Whale & Dolphin Safari THANK YOU once again. Today (7th Feb) my family and I boarded the 1:30 outing on a stunning Sunday. Skippered by the knowledgeable Gary and very ably crewed by an equally knowledgeable and passionate Liz, Briar and Kirsty the trip did not disappoint. The passion and engagement of the crews with passengers was outstanding. The announcements informative and lively, even the warning of “don’t sit there you’ll get wet” most ignored, as they always do and yes they got wet ! But that’s a part of the experience. We sailed out into the Gulf and soon found a plethora of dolphins and gannets in their world. Children screamed in delight while Kirsty explained the life of a dolphin. A thousand photos and videos later we’d heard an orca had been spotted and headed for the area. But, this time the orca had escaped our prying eyes so we sailed back after about 4 hours back to our human world. Happy that the money raised from ticket and shop sales goes towards the research AWADS carries out, happy that we’d had an envious glimpse of another world in its natural beauty. Thank you team, an awesome day and safe to say we’ll be back ♥️
Written 7 February 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Safari56899416608
Kia Ora, Thank you so much for your amazing 5 star review of your time with us last week! Our crew really are passionate about what they do and they enjoy sharing it with our passengers. We can't wait to have you come back out with us again soon!
Written 11 February 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Celiafowler01Celia FowlerCeliafowler01
Auckland Central, New Zealand7 contributions
Whales & Dolphins
Jan 2021
This is the best trip to do in our Hauraki Gulf. We had very competent and fun all women crew. Their collective knowledge is very impressive. We found hundreds of common dolphins, penguins, orca and killer whales.
This is also a research boat so they note what is seen and where and pass on all info to relevant groups. You can buy snacks and sandwiches on board and a wine or juice. This is 5 hours of absolute fun and I recommend it so highly that I have put it back on my bucket list to do again!!
Written 27 January 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Safari56899416608
Kia Ora Celia, thank you for your amazing 5 star review of our Auckland Whale and Dolphin Safari! The research is a large part of what we do to help with the protection of the Hauraki Gulf and it is great to have you be a part of that with us. We look forward to seeing you again in the near future!
Written 4 February 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Marcia K
13 contributions
Fabulous day
Jan 2021 • Couples
The whole afternoon trip was fabulous. All female crew who were professional, skilled, knowledgeable. Saw loads and loads of dolphins. The boat is in fab condition, ultra clean and very comfortable. If you want to get out in the Haruki Gulf and see lots of islands, this trip is a must do.
Written 15 January 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Safari56899416608
Kia Ora, thank you for your great review of your trip with our all female crew! Pleased to hear you saw loads of dolphins as well.
Written 4 February 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Lutz-Germany
15 contributions
We were successful!
We had a wonderful trip with AW&DS on New Year´s Eve 2019 as part of our NZ-tour around the North Island.
Booking and organization in advance were easy and uncomplicated.
The crew was friendly, gave loads of information during the tour and also cared for their guests by distributing sunscreen as it was a sunny, cloudless day.
Our boat was comfortable and very well maintained with sufficient space to move around.
We were lucky to see masses of dolphins swimming and playing around the ship including lots of baby-dolphins.
Of course, the highlight was “the whale” we followed for at least 30 minutes (our first one ever) which made the tour unforgettable and really special. I’m sorry that I can’t post a foto as I only made some videos of him :-(
We definitely recommend AW&DS and their half day tour.
Thanks a lot guys!
Written 5 June 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

AppleStud
Dallas, TX389 contributions
Great boat and nice to see orcas and dolphins
Harbor views were neat and sea spray, if wanted, were a nice start. The 4+ hours went by so quickly. Friendly crew who really care about the sea was touching.
Written 29 March 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Thank you for your 5* review, AppleStud! We are pleased that you thoroughly enjoyed your safari experiencing exploring Auckland's Hauraki Gulf Marine Park and viewing both the marine wildlife that lives here. We hope to see you on board again in the future.
Written 29 March 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

flatworm
birmingham134 contributions
Great afternoon out , loads of dolphins..
Feb 2020
Superb afternoon out , well run outfit , helpful crew , saw lots of dolphins in the Hauraki Gulf Four hours plus out on the boat in warm sunny weather , suspect the dolphins have more energy to play when its warm , remember dolphins are wild animals and sometimes they don't cooperate with human desires !
Written 28 March 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Thank you for your 5* review, flatworm! We are pleased that you thoroughly enjoyed your safari experiencing exploring Auckland's Hauraki Gulf Marine Park and viewing both the dolphins that live here. We hope to see you on board again in the future.
Written 29 March 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Jan
1 contribution
Not recommended, inapplicable guarantee/refund policy
Mar 2020
I definitely don't recommend you this company. The crew, boat and our cruise was nice but the customer post-service was insufficient and their terms about sighting guarantee are inapplicable for most of the foreigner tourists. I usually don't give a negative rating, but now I had to do exception. I understand that the weather cannot be influenced, but their guarantee is promoted, therefore I would like to notify other travelers about its conditions before theirs experiences. During our watching was bad weather, therefore cruise was shortened and we didn’t see a whale, therefore the crew offered us after cruise a complimentary voucher, that is enable to use only for any following cruise with this company, only in Auckland and only based on verification by the same ID (non-transferable). We explained our situation, that we are only 3 weeks in NZ, and only limited time in Auckland due to our already planned and paid activities in other places. We were able to take only morning cruises, however these were not held during March. Even voucher has no expiry it is unlikely that we will be able visit NZ due to the our very high travel expense. Then we explained the same situation to the customer support and ask for possibility of money refund and revocation of the voucher. There we got confirmation that refund was put through their system now and we will have it all processed on next business day. Based on this confirmation we paid other cruise. Although few days later we got a message that refund is not possible to process due to their terms and conditions, that it was a mistake.
Simply we will never be able to use their voucher and we had to spend extra money for whale watching with different company. It is not standard refund policy, I would like to recommend other NZ company (e.g. in Kaikoura), where is money refund guaranteed.
Nevertheless we really enjoyed the lovely New Zealand and nice people and nature there.
Written 22 March 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Thank you for your review, racansky_honza. We are pleased that you enjoyed your safari experience exploring Auckland's Hauraki Gulf Marine Park with us. We do apologise for the miscommunication in regards to being able to obtain a refund. As clearly stated on our website and booking conditions, we offer a Sightings Guarantee in the form of complimentary vouchers. We do this in lieu of offering refunds so that, if you are unfortunate enough to be in the <5% of trips that can't locate any marine mammals (in this instance, an inaccurate marine forecast hindered the ability for our crew to locate the wildlife), there is another opportunity to try again which, many of our passengers who receive these vouchers do. There is no expiry date so we always suggest to keep the voucher safe in case you do return to New Zealand. The current record is 13 years in between visits! We do hope that you will visit New Zealand again one day in the future and be able to join us on board.
Written 25 March 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Florent DENIEUL
Maisons-Alfort, France7 contributions
SO MANY MANY DOLPHINS!
Mar 2020 • Couples
With Auckland Whale & Dolphin Safari, I lived a great and magic journey!
For the First Time in my life, I saw Many Dolphins and I was like a Child! Don’t hesitate!
Written 21 March 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Thank you for your 5* review, florentdenieul! We are pleased that you thoroughly enjoyed your safari experience exploring Auckland's Hauraki Gulf Marine Park, learning about the ocean and viewing the dolphins that live here. We hope to see you on board again in the future.
Written 22 March 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Pál S
Budapest, Hungary90 contributions
Lot of dolphins and some whales
Mar 2020
The crew was knowledgeable and friendly. We saw a lot of dolphins and some whales.
There was interesting, where the lots of seabird was, there where the dolphins too.
Written 19 March 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Thank you for your 5* review, Pál S! We are pleased that you thoroughly enjoyed your safari experience exploring Auckland's Hauraki Gulf Marine Park, learning about the ocean and viewing the dolphins and whales that live here. We hope to see you on board again in the future.
Written 22 March 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Showing results 1-10 of 1,052
About the operator

Don’t take it from us – here’s what people have to say about this operator.

By: Auckland Whale & Dolphin Safari
F3738SIjoer
F3738SIjoer
00
Great trip
Awesome day on the water out in beautiful Hauraki Gulf. Great team. Seen birds, dolphins, whales and even American
catherinemfoster
catherinemfoster
00
Whale and dolphin safari
Great team... pity the wildlife didn’t play ball. I’ve now got a free pass for as many trips as it takes for them t
johnfindlay1958
johnfindlay1958
00
Fantastic afternoon
My wife and I enjoyed a beautiful afternoon out on the water. The boat was clean, fast and totally fit for purpose.
RadiomaninLaos
RadiomaninLaos
00
Great Value for Money
Remember this is nature and whatever your expectations are remember that you are a visitor in the Dolphins, Whales
ravinderksethi
ravinderksethi
00
Thanks
Very nice trip Seen dolphins in life first time Cruise speed was excited and dolphins plays with it.
kylemillar33
kylemillar33
00
Awesome experience
We had a wonderful trip with a very informative crew. I highly recommend this trip to people of any age.
nigelvedder
nigelvedder
00
Taupo Outing
We had a great time. Skipper and Crew were excellent, skipper very entertaining on putting things across. Boat was
515dee
515dee
00
Auckland Whale & Dolphin Safari
We have had excellent service from the team. We attended on Sunday the 1st of March and saw an amazing pod of over
Dreamer21078034878
Dreamer21078034878
00
Whale & Dolphins
After 2 attempt re-scheduled due to bad weather we were fortunate to be on the lucky one. Plenty dolphins and a wha
11Nicknick
11Nicknick
00
Excellent experience
Far exceeded expectations.Well put together tour, very informative and knowledgeable staff made the experience a fu
johnS6473LA
johnS6473LA
00
simply amazing
love it and anyone considering going. you definitely should. it’s very educational too. the dolphins are super cute
HapppyTony
HapppyTony
00
A Great morning trip out with this knowledgeable team
I am late with a big “Thank You” for Whale and dolphin Watching – my wife and I had a really great time and saw a
jd732019
jd732019
00
Awesome experience
We were lucky to see a huge pod of dolphins and a bryde whale. The staff were lovely and offered great education ab
B167GOsusanm
B167GOsusanm
00
Great afternoon around the AUCKLAND harbour and outer islands
The crew were amazing with my 3 grandchildren. It was very informative shames about lack of sea life but they gave
FrequentFlier433229
FrequentFlier433229
00
Excellent by Robbie Slaughter
Professionally run, exceptionally well organised. Crew showed a genuine interest in their commendable work. Excell
Frequently Asked Questions about Auckland Dolphin and Whale Watching Eco-Safari Cruise


Auckland Dolphin and Whale Watching Eco-Safari Cruise price starts from $101.24. Discover and book Auckland Dolphin and Whale Watching Eco-Safari Cruise on Tripadvisor

Auckland Dolphin and Whale Watching Eco-Safari Cruise cancellation policy: For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience. Discover and book Auckland Dolphin and Whale Watching Eco-Safari Cruise on Tripadvisor

Auckland Dolphin and Whale Watching Eco-Safari Cruise is hosted by Auckland Whale & Dolphin Safari. Read reviews, discover additonal experiences or contact Auckland Whale & Dolphin Safari on Tripadvisor. Discover and book Auckland Dolphin and Whale Watching Eco-Safari Cruise on Tripadvisor