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

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 89 reviews
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    Excellent
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    Very good
  • 3
    Average
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    Terrible
A must do experience

Two days ago we had the most awesome experience with Okarito nature tours in every sense. I cannot speak highly enough about Gemma who looked after us all so well, we hired two... read more

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed 6 January 2016
Karenza H
,
Wanaka, New Zealand
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89 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 86: English reviews
Wanaka, New Zealand
Level Contributor
28 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 January 2016

Two days ago we had the most awesome experience with Okarito nature tours in every sense. I cannot speak highly enough about Gemma who looked after us all so well, we hired two double kayaks for myself, my husband and two children aged 9 and 12 and we all loved it. The safety briefing, information about the route and birds... More 

Helpful?
Thank Karenza H
BazHughes, Kayaker, barista and host at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Thanks Karenza, I am glad you guys had such a great time out there. We look forward to having you guys back up for an overnight trip in the future. Cheers Gemma More 

London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
153 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 88 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 January 2016

This is our second time hiring a kayak from Okarito Nature Tours and spending a couple of magical hours on the lagoon in the company of white herons, oyster catchers and many other species of birds. First time it was raining heavily and it was kind of a surreal (but still unbelievably beautiful) experience. This time the sun was out... More 

Helpful?
Thank Hila5
BazHughes, Kayakers, baristas, bakers and hosts! at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Thank you very much for taking the time to review us! Mel is stoked with your comments, really nice for her to hear you enjoyed the place so much, and it makes us feel great that you've enjoyed Okarito enough to return again. You're welcome anytime of course (-: More 

Queenstown, New Zealand
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 November 2015 via mobile

Remote, peaceful & some of the best photo opportunities on the west coast. The bird life was amazing - the rare Great White Heron! and we were fortunate to experience a very personalized tour. Thanks!

Helpful?
Thank RichieJ82
Fair Oaks, California
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 November 2015

My husband and I decided on a whim to veer off the main road on our way from Queenstown to Franz Josef Village, and check out Okarito. The drive was pleasant, and when we reached Okarito, a sign offering coffee beckoned us into the Okarito Nature Tours hut. There we found Gemma who made the best flat whites we tasted... More 

Helpful?
2 Thank lcjjmama
BazHughes, Owner at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Thank you very much for your review of us - really makes us feel good about what we can offer visitors, and Gemma is stoked to see your comments, so thanks for taking the time!! Best decisions are made on a whim we reckon (-: More 

Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
310 reviews
106 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 381 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 March 2015

Spent a morning paddling the Okarito Lagoon on a half day self-guided tour ($60 NZD/person). It's a shallow area in which almost everyone got caught in mud or on stones. (Get out and push the kayak.) The scenery is mostly marshland with areas of rainforest. We saw several fake herons (statues) and a couple real ones. The company provides life... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank krawner
BazHughes, Owner at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Ah, you must have got low tide in the lagoon!!! Higher tides or recent rainfall means the water level is higher and easy gliding kayaking; you must have got the adventure trip then! Good on you for enjoying it and getting out in the rain too - thanks for visiting and taking the time to review us! Baz More 

Holywell, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
345 reviews
241 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 236 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 March 2015

Although Okarito is away off the main highway 6 north of Franz Joseph it is well worth making the 14 kilometre detour along Forks-Okarito Road to this charming little village. at the far end of the village is a small car park and foot path leading down to a beautiful sandy beach. At the near end of the village you... More 

Helpful?
2 Thank Ron P
BazHughes, Owner at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Thank you Ron; good detailed review of some of things you can do in Okarito - a little off the beaten track but thats part of the charm. Beautiful beach walks here too, and hikes up into the National Park forest overlooking the village - great views of the Southern Alps on a clear day; pounding dramatic seas on not... More 

Berlin, Germany
Level Contributor
11 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 March 2015

We highly recommend Okarito Nature Tours. We hired two two-seater kayaks for our children (8 and 10) and us. Eventhough we had bad luck with the weather (pouring rain almost all the time during our half day trip), we really enjoyed the trip and the kids thought it was a great adventure. We even managed to see a White Heron... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank 2015_180Tage
BazHughes, Owner at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Thanks guys!! Sorry you got a rainy day - not many this summer, but glad it was such a cool adventure for the kids!! see you in the sun next time, thanks for taking the time to post a review! Cheers, Baz More 

Denver
Level Contributor
35 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 March 2015

Okarito is a small village, 13km off the main highway - 25 min north of Franz Josef. Okarito Nature Tours was part of a bigger tour with Active Adventures. We kayaked with Okarito Nature Tours for a 1/2 day in the morning. The scenary was beautiful, particularly in the lagoon area. They provide everything for us and made it a... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank CynK2
BazHughes, Owner at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Thanks for the review!! Glad you enjoyed your time with us - hope the rest of the trip with Active Adventures was great, jealous of all the places we know you were heading! More 

Christchurch, New Zealand
Level Contributor
65 reviews
24 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 March 2015

Kayaking the Okarito Lagoon was breath-taking. The birdlife is abundant - a real bird-lover's dream. The flora is also stunning - you can kayak right up into native forest. The briefing we received before we headed out in the kayaks was helpful and informative. And the flat whites on our return were delicious!

Helpful?
1 Thank Chch_Mel
BazHughes, Owner at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Thanks Mel! Stoked you got so much from your visit; we're a bit off the beaten track but nice to have visitors from over the hill! come back for a paddle and coffee again anytime. Cheers, Baz More 

Christchurch, New Zealand
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 February 2015

My partner and I hired a kayak from Okarito Nature Tours and headed out for an overnight wild camping trip in the lagoon. The location is stunning. I had really hoped we'd see a white heron...I'd lost count by the time we got to the camping spot (which was only half an hour away). We headed out in mid-afternoon, set... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank Helen99199
BazHughes, Owner at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Awesome, thanks guys!!! We were stoked to be able to send out a couple that we knew would appreciate the lagoon and beach so much - sweet spot for Valentine's Day eh?! Love to see you guys back here sometime - winter's pretty special, quiet and lots of blue skies so if you feel like a break from the city,... More 

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San Francisco, California
2 months ago

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Typical questions asked:
  • Will you pick up and drop off at my hotel?
  • I have a family of 7. Can your tour accommodate all of us together?
  • How should I dress for this tour?