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Address: 1 The Strand, Okarito 7856, New Zealand (Formerly Okarito Nature Tours)
Phone Number:
0800 652 748
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours

Kayaking on Okarito Lagoon, New Zealand's largest unmodified coastal...

Kayaking on Okarito Lagoon, New Zealand's largest unmodified coastal wetland. Guided tours and freedom rental. Excellent birdwatching and amazing mountain views. Paddle through the Okarito River Delta that leads deep into the rainforest.Our kayaks are safe, stable sea kayaks. Prior experience is not necessary and full instruction is given.Okarito is a quaint coastal village backdropped by the Southern Alps, only 20 minutes drive from Franz Josef Glacier, and has the best coffee in town!

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 93 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 79
  • 8
    Very good
  • 3
  • 0
  • 0
Great Kayaking Experience with the Family

Don't be deceived by this small, casual-looking business in it's remote location. It is run very professionally and Baz and Gemma both went out of their way to ensure our time... read more

Reviewed 27 April 2016
Michelle C
Christchurch, New Zealand
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93 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 90: English reviews
Christchurch, New Zealand
Level Contributor
39 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 April 2016

Don't be deceived by this small, casual-looking business in it's remote location. It is run very professionally and Baz and Gemma both went out of their way to ensure our time with them was safe and enjoyable. We booked a 2-hour trip but before we got on the water Baz gave us a safety briefing and carefully explained the lagoon... More 

Thank Michelle C
OkaritoKayaks, Kayak scrubber, milk frother, coffee grinder at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Hey, thanks Michelle - nice review! One of the most rewarding parts of our work is getting kids and families out exploring on the lagoon. Glad you all enjoyed your paddle out here, and the hot chocolates on return (-: Cheers, Baz More 

Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
47 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 April 2016

Ridiculous to set off across the water in the pouring rain? Could have been but as it turned out, half way through our kayaking trip the sky turned bright blue and in the distance was snow-capped Mt Cook. What a spectacle! The kayaking guides were very calm and friendly and led us to the loveliest of places. There were two... More 

Thank Margaret M
OkaritoKayaks, Paddler at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Hey Margaret - hey, good on ya for getting out there in such good spirits;oldies or not! We remember that day on the lagoon pretty well, great coming back out of the beautiful Tidal Creek on that trip eh?! Glad you enjoyed the place so much! More 

Christchurch, Canterbury, New Zealand
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 March 2016

Booked the trip with Barry and he provided all the local knowledge and confidence of a professional kayak guide.the kayaks were good with dry bags provided.we booked for 4 hrs and ended up doing 3 1/2 hrs ,that's with two kids 9 and 11. This is a very scenic and relaxing adventure ,take your time and enjoy the wet lands.

Thank Steven M
OkaritoKayaks, Paddler at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Steve, thanks for the review - great to get you and the family out there, it's one of the most rewarding parts of our wee business to see kids getting out and exploring, so we're stoked to have had you guys visit. Hopefully see you again sometime, cheers Baz. More 

Kendal, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
40 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 March 2016 via mobile

This company are awesome! Contacted by email, responded straight away! We took self kayak on the lagoon great safety talk, good map with info to check out on our route! The views were stunning! Actually saw Mount Cook too despite a bit if cloud! Lots of birdlife! Felt at one with nature! Can't recommend highly enough! Okarito is off the... More 

Thank Lindy A
OkaritoKayaks, Paddler at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Awesome you enjoyed your kayaking so much - yeah, we're a bit off the beaten track here but that gives you that peaceful experience on the water that you enjoyed, so good on ya for getting out here and finding us. Thanks for taking the time to write back to us too, really appreciated!! Cheers! More 

Kenilworth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
22 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 March 2016

If you are confident on water this is a great way of seeing the nature on the lagoon. Good boats, excellent guide. Really intersting location with lots of information and a little exercise thrown in. Excellent cake as well.

Thank Chris B
BazHughes, Kayak guide and pusher outter at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Cheers Chris, glad you enjoyed your paddle with us. Guiding kayak trips is the best part of our work here for us; it's neat for us when our kayakers get so much out of their experience here. Agree on the cake too ...! Thanks, Baz. More 

Ljubljana, Slovenia
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviewed 24 February 2016

If you like the nature or you're just after a good coffee this is the place to go! Okarito is cute, little town and half day kayaking tour is the best way to explore this lagoon full of native birds, amazing trees and stunning views of Southern Alps. Its also the best coffee place on the west coast, great coffee... More 

Thank 535Lejla
BazHughes, Carrot cake quality controller at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Hi Lejla - thanks heaps, Gem will be stoked with your comments! I work hard at sampling her baking to ensure our quality remains high too (-: Glad you enjoyed our place, you're welcome back anytime ... Baz More 

Christchurch, New Zealand
Level Contributor
442 reviews
194 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 114 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 February 2016

The office for the kayaking is also a nice cafe with the best coffee for miles around - OK, it is the only place serving coffee. Friendly staff, a selection of cakes and cookies, and damn good coffee, what more do you need as you get ready or recover from a kayak trip on the lagoon? Kayaking on the lagoon... More 

Thank happysheepChina
BazHughes, Kayak cleaner, barista, guide ... at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

C4 coffee, Christchurch if you need to find a fix anywhere else. And thanks for the compliments! We work really hard to give the best tasting caffeine we can, and are lucky to have this stunning lagoon to kayak on ... Baz More 

Christchurch, New Zealand
Level Contributor
11 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 February 2016

I don't get to the West Coast of New Zealand very often, but when I have, I've always missed out on seeing Okarito. As a keen photographer and nature lover, I decided this holiday the kayaking trip on the Okarito Lagoon was top of the list. We booked kayaks and did the freedom option. On booking, we were advised to... More 

BazHughes, Bit of everything here ... at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Hey, beautiful review! We're glad you got so much out of the trip, we feel very lucky to be able to live and kayak here, so neat for us when others appreciate it so much. Waking up to another morning just like you experienced here at the moment - enjoy the day and your memories (-: More 

Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
259 reviews
139 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 88 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 February 2016

We were with friends who live in NZ so we were fortunate to learn about Okarito and delighted to visit. The Nature Tours office is also a cafe which serves excellent coffee and cake. They are opportunities to go kayaking unsupervised or with a guide. Its well worthwhile on a fine day as the views are lovely and the birdwatching... More 

Thank Grant D
BazHughes, Kayaker, cleaner, coffe maker ..... at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Thanks for your feedback Grant, glad you enjoyed your coffee! C4 roast and supply our coffee, they have a great cafe in Tuam St, Christchurch, if you get to visit. Caffeine helps us paddle ... (-: More 

Level Contributor
267 reviews
82 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 96 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 February 2016 via mobile

Great food and location but a most disappointing attitude from the cafe staff. Tried talking about the locality and got a brusque response. Would have gone elsewhere had we known.

Thank Pete S
BazHughes, Kayaking, cleaning, coffee making but not the baker at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Hi Pete - hey, real sorry! All of us here try to be approachable and talk to visitors about the place we live and work in. We're quite proud of our wee town and area, and a lot of visitors who come into our kayak shop want to know about our area - sometimes though, we can be tied up... More 

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San Francisco, California
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  • Will you pick up and drop off at my hotel?
  • I have a family of 7. Can your tour accommodate all of us together?
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