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Ulva Island Explorer from Stewart Island
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Reviewed 3 June 2023 via mobile

Absolutely horrible,I arrived to the ferry in bluff to the manager yelling at me claiming I was late, this was disgusting behaviour and god only knows how many other times this has happened, people inside the terminal heard her and even the crew of RealNZ, an absolute embarrassment to the company and made my trip over a bad experience.If your thinking of taking the ferry I would spend the extra and fly instead.When taken further management did a poor job and all I got was a pathetic apology email.

Date of experience: April 2023
Thank Savvytraveler568
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 27 May 2023

The best guided trip we have done so far and we have done a few. The enthusiasm of our guide Karen is infectious and we wouldn't have spotted half the interesting wildlife she knowingly pointed out. Thanks to the whole crew. You are wonderful. 😊❤️

Date of experience: May 2023
Thank Astrid J
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 24 May 2023

One of the best tours we had in the entire 15 days at New Zealand. It's a long day which starts with a pickup from Invercargill. The driver didn't have much to speak, maybe there isn't too much of content or it was the early hours but she went the extra mile and included a drop till Bluff for photo-op which was awesome. Then she dropped us at the ferry and the ferry ride was great. It was a bit bumpy and if you are not careful, may get a bit nauseous. Once you get down at Stewart Island, probably an usher or guide would be handy because the pickup point of bus tour of the island is a 2 minute walk away and we had to scramble to first check and then reach there on time. The bus tour was the best and the walks and hikes on the island in Rakiura was well managed, informative and well-paced. Our bus guide knew the city in India where we came from and that made for a nice little chitchat topic. He even made the entire bus cheer for us newlyweds which was a lovely touch. Clearly the best guide we had so far in NZ. It's a rushed tour and you are only back in Invercargill at around 6pm so be mindful of the fact and make sure you have some dinner options handy because restaurants close early there.

Date of experience: February 2023
Thank ArpanD
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 6 May 2023

This was a bit pricey, but looking back after the trip, and my entire family thought this was the best thing we did. Better then skydiving, bungy jumping, luge, ziplining, and black water rafting.
We started out on a boat ride to see some of the native sea birds and seals, that was interesting but not really a bonus for us. Then we walked quietly through the woods, and tried to find the wild kiwi's. We had no luck and finally reached the beach. You could tell our tour guides were worried, because they want to let you experience the kiwi in the wild. After much time on the beach, we started back, still without seeing a kiwi. Although a highlight of the evening was watching one of the guides get chased by the seal. She did a great job putting herself in between the group and a really pissed off seal, that was amazingly fast. There are many ways to handle a wild animal encounter, and she used what she was trained to do. I might have done things a bit different, but we were safe and got to place some bets between us. On the way back they had both guides and a third guide looking. They finally tracked one, and it took another hour to finally see the kiwi for a brief 10 seconds. I don't care who you are watching the kiwi for even 10 seconds was so awesome. This from a family that has been around the world and on multiple safari's in africa. This still was super cool.
We would do this again in a heartbeat, and would recommend you going as well. The guides worked super hard, and you have to understand that some nights you may not see a kiwi. If the company offered a 50% rebate if no kiwi was spotted, then this would be the ultimate destination. However, going back to the boat without seeing one was going to be tough, although we enjoyed the actually hiking trek. We were saved by the last second kiwi encounter.

Date of experience: April 2023
Thank jimandthefamily
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 12 April 2023 via mobile

Went on the trip to Ulva Island today. What a fantastic experience. All the RealNZ team were exceptional especially Britt who gave us a really informative commentary and Jens who led our Island hike. His knowledge of the forest and bird life was extraordinary. I would recommend this trip for everyone. The walk in Ulva was very accessible and not difficult.

Date of experience: April 2023
Thank LucindaBee
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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