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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 93 reviews
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  • 79
    Excellent
  • 8
    Very good
  • 3
    Average
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    Terrible
Great experience, even in the rain!

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... read more

Reviewed 25 March 2015
2015_180Tage
,
Berlin, Germany
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93 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 90: English reviews
Berlin, Germany
Level Contributor
11 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
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
39 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
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
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
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 

Christchurch, New Zealand
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
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
166 reviews
90 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 75 helpful votes
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
84 reviews
24 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
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
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
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
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 

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San Francisco, California
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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?