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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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  • 75
    Excellent
  • 8
    Very good
  • 3
    Average
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    Terrible
Excellent family kayaking

Okarito Nature Tours was fantastic and we highly recommend them. They helped us work out the best kayaking tour for our family (2 adults and a 7, 9 and 11 yr old) with minimal... read more

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed 29 January 2015
ajl795
,
Christchurch, New Zealand
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89 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 86: English reviews
Christchurch, New Zealand
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 January 2015

Okarito Nature Tours was fantastic and we highly recommend them. They helped us work out the best kayaking tour for our family (2 adults and a 7, 9 and 11 yr old) with minimal experience kayaking. First, they discussed the best route and time for us to go. High tide meant we could go a shorter distance to the bridge... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank ajl795
BazHughes, Owner at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Thank you guys! It's great for us to see families head out and have the kids explore and enjoy a new world to them; we're lucky to have such an easy environment for them to do this and still get a real sense of adventure. Good on you for getting them out there!! More 

Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
164 reviews
89 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 73 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 January 2015

I went to Okarito kiwi-searching, and stopped in at Nature Tours for their somewhat legendary coffees (and they ARE good!) The staff here are fantastic, and I wish we could have stayed an extra day and done a kayak trip. Watching them prepare another family I realised what a professional outfit they are, despite the lovely relaxed atmosphere. Okarito is... More 

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

Thanks for taking the time to review us Andrew - glad you and the family enjoyed the place; was really good to chat with you. Agree wholeheartedly about the coffee!!! Hopefully we'll see you back on your next kiwi-searching visit, look forward to it. Baz. More 

Christchurch
Level Contributor
80 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 January 2015

Kayaking Okarito Lagoon is an exceptional experience. We are two 79 year old Kiwis and took two German bird watching enthusiast friends for what I think is one of NZ's best attractions. Gemma and her team at Okarito kayacks made pre-booking easy with best tide advice. Fully kitted, very stable, double sea kayacks including water skirts, dry bags and life... More 

Helpful?
Thank GrahamChristchurch
London, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
16 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 December 2014

Excellent way to spend a few hours canoeing in the lagoon. Friendly staff who have extensive knowledge about the area. The lagoon is a lovely area, you go through different types of scenery, you can do long or short trips depending on your wishes. If you are lucky you may see a variety of birds. Don't leave it after 14.00... More 

Helpful?
Thank Caroline F
BazHughes, Owner at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Thank you Caroline - for your review and for taking the time to visit us. Glad you appreciated the lagoon and its surrounding forest (and the coffee!). Baz Excellent way to spend a few hours canoeing in the lagoon. Friendly staff who have extensive knowledge about the area. The lagoon is a lovely area, you go through different types of... More 

Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 December 2014

The staff were great. Gave us all needed information and help - like where to go and when. The trip was awesome. We had a ful day trip which gave us time to have a lunch out in the lagoon/wetlands with an orchestra of bird song around us. The full day rental was just a few dollars more expensive than... More 

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

Hey, thanks for the awesome review! Don't always have visitors to our wee town make the time to spend a whole day out, but sounds like you guys really got the most from it and got to enjoy some real peace and quiet out with the birds - good on you for not hurrying!! Will pass on your compliment to... More 

2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 November 2014

We phoned ahead in the morning and got friendly answers to our novice questions. Turned up an hour later and had a blast. The staff were great and really friendly. They gave us lots of helpful advice and suggested where to go and what to look out for. The wind picked up after we'd been out for an hour or... More 

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

Ah, thanks guys!!! Really nice review, glad you liked your time here. Been a unusually windy wet last month so great to have had enthusiastic visitors; you both did great for 'novices' though!! That was close to a record speed paddle back with the tide helping from memory?! Beautiful clear skies now and low winds so hope you're enjoying the... More 

Dunedin, New Zealand
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 November 2014

By far the best way to explore the lagoon and the surrounding creeks and rainforest that are absolutely stunning. Richard was super friendly, explained to us the best places to go and just generally accommodated us really well Oh and the complimentary tea/coffee/hot chocolate at the end was much appreciated...

Helpful?
Thank Jack_Williams_1990
BazHughes, Manager at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Thanks for the review Jack!! Great to see you enjoyed yourself, the paddling up into the forest and river channels is pretty special eh?! Nice to relax out here at the coast with a drink after too. Maybe see you again sometime, thanks for visiting us. More 

Melbourne
Level Contributor
165 reviews
32 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 November 2014

easy to get to staff were great - Richard was very friendly and helpful kayaking was excellent such a great area and surroundings easy to navigate Richard made us a cup of tea afterwards would recommend

Helpful?
Thank Amy W
BazHughes, Manager at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Thanks Amy - glad you enjoyed the place as much as we do, we reckon its pretty special out on the lagoon too. Nice to have had you visit us!! More 

Maryland
Level Contributor
195 reviews
133 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 94 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 August 2014

It seems we were the only ones visiting the South Island in June so we didn't have difficulty booking tours last minute. Richard at Nature Tours was an excellent host and very flexible. We asked to take the kayaks a bit earlier in the morning and it was no problem. Richard fitted us with our gear (kayak, life preserver, gloves,... More 

Helpful?
Thank Alison M
Richard_okarito, Owner at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Hi Thanks for your wonderful review and photos. When you mentioned the sea sock, I wasn't sure what you were referring to. Then I clicked - the dry bag for storage of cameras, clothes etc. But sea sock is a great name too! Cheers Richard More 

Francestown, New Hampshire
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 July 2014

Perfect for the novice that I am. The lagoon is beautiful, quiet. Warm welcome by Richard, who is really friendly and helpful. Really cheap as compared to others cities, and honestly i'm happy i did kayaking in this lagoon instead of another crowded touristy place. Bonus, for the winter beautiful view on the white mountains. We gathered some shellfish directly... More 

Helpful?
Thank Sandrineandalex
Richard_okarito, Manager at Okarito Kayaks, responded to this review

Hi Guys Was great to meet you. Hope those pipis tasted good! Cheers Richard More 

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Questions & Answers

Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of Okarito Kayaks and other visitors
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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?