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“A good way to see whales.”
Review of Wings Over Whales

Wings Over Whales
Ranked #4 of 27 Tours in Kaikoura
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: <1 hour
Owner description: Adventure through the skies and experience the true magic of Kaikoura. Wings Over Whales are a Qualmark endorsed visitor activity providing whale watching flights, scenic air tours and point to point private aircraft charter. The focus at Wings Over Whales is to deliver a friendly, high quality, boutique experience to all customers where the comfort and safety of each passenger is paramount. The company operate two aircraft; a 4-seater Cessna 172 as well as an 8-seater Gippsland Airvan. Both planes are high-winged allowing each passenger their own window seat and unobstructed views of Kaikoura’s marine wild life and majestic scenery. Wings Over Whales are situated at Kaikoura Airport, an 8km drive south from the town centre. Located in an inviting log cabin terminal, customers can enjoy great facilities with on-site gift shop, cafe and rest room facilities. In typical 30 minute flight you will see the majestic Sperm Whale preparing for his next dive and up to 500 Dusky Dolphins playfully swimming. Occasional sightings include Southern Right, Humpback, Fin, Sei, Brydes, Pilot, Southern Bottlenose and Blue Whales. Other, less frequent visitors to the area include Southern Right Whale, Orca and the endangered blue whale
Useful Information: Wheelchair access, Food available for purchase, Activities for young children, Baby buggy parking, Activities for older children, Bathroom facilities
Romford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
98 reviews
55 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“A good way to see whales.”
Reviewed 18 March 2017

You can look at whales by boat, helicopter and plane. The boat only runs three times a day now due to the upheaval of the land under the sea which restricts the boats from getting in and out of harbour (they use to run ten to fifteen times a day). This means they are often fully booked. On the Saturday we arrived the first guaranteed space was Wednesday although you can turn up for sailings hoping someone does not show (there is a waiting list for that even). So we opted for the plane. There are two plane companies, one with the wing below the fuselage and one above. The latter gives a better view in my opinion - so Wings Over Whales it was.  We were the only two passengers but they do not fill the plane to capacity in any case; everyone gets a window seat. A short flight out and it is time to spot the whale. It should be said that there is no guarantee in seeing one. When they are spotted you circle above at about 500 feet. You have a good view. It may be the case that the boat gets you up closer (and the boat trip is three and a half hours) but you are more certain in the plane. We saw both whales and dusky Dolphins. It was a short 35 minute trip but one to be treasured. 

Visited February 2017
Helpful?
4 Thank Clive_C54
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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216 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
9 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Great Experience. Highly Recommend.”
Reviewed 16 March 2017

The staff was very professional and polite. They welcomed us into their beautiful facility. The pilot was Jesse. Using picture slides he gave a short and interesting talk on the geology and why the whales live here and which kind of whales we might see. He was very good at picking clues to where the whales might be and flying there. We saw the famous sperms whales, a humpback playing with Dolphins and a few others.

Visited February 2017
Helpful?
5 Thank Kawuneeche
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Great Experience!!”
Reviewed 12 March 2017

I would like to thank Wings over Whales and especially the pilot Edward who is a great pilot and thanks to him we have saw 7 sperm whale, learned a lot with him and had a lot of fun! Christine and Pierre (the icecream winner) from France

Visited February 2017
Helpful?
4 Thank Pierre V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Whale watching from the air”
Reviewed 11 March 2017 via mobile

I had a great 30 min flight with pilot Edward of 'Wings over whales', looking for whales near Kaikoura. Saw a blue whale and a sperm whale.
Amazing experience!

Visited March 2017
Helpful?
3 Thank Najla S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Great Trip”
Reviewed 7 March 2017

I got burned by the whale watch boat company as well. Thankfully Wings Over Whales offers a great and completely unusual experience. You get your own window seat and the pilot makes every effort to make sure everyone gets plenty of chances to see the whales and dolphins. The views of the Kaikoura landscape were also gorgeous. Great pilot. They also have a shuttle you can book for a small fee from Kaikoura city center, if you don't have a car.

Visited February 2017
Helpful?
4 Thank Matthew N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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