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“Outstanding personnel at a gorgeous site”
Review of Okarito Kayaks

Okarito Kayaks
Ranked #2 of 6 things to do in Okarito
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: 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!
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children, Food available for purchase
Reviewed 5 April 2017

We stopped in to check on renting kayaks and seeing the bird life in the lagoon. Baz went beyond the extra mile to inform of us the opportunity, what we would face, what we might see for the current conditions (low fog, windy, light rain). In the end we did not go out due to the low fog, but he was as nice and patient as anyone we dealt with in our trip to NZ, and most of them were great as well. Great couple, great place, highly recommended.

Thank BountGlen62
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"self guided"
in 8 reviews
"dry bags"
in 7 reviews
"white heron"
in 13 reviews
"double kayak"
in 6 reviews
"life jackets"
in 4 reviews
"black swans"
in 4 reviews
"excellent coffee"
in 4 reviews
"kayaking trip"
in 4 reviews
"great kayaking"
in 4 reviews
"franz josef"
in 6 reviews
"southern alps"
in 6 reviews
"off the beaten track"
in 4 reviews
"half day trip"
in 3 reviews
"carrot cake"
in 3 reviews
"safety briefing"
in 3 reviews
"hot drinks"
in 3 reviews
"the staff were great"
in 3 reviews

18 - 22 of 112 reviews

Reviewed 3 April 2017

My wife and i did the half day paddle up the lagoon and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. The owners are friendly and informative. Everything we needed for the trip was supplied, the kayak was easy to use and the half day trip was just a perfect amount of time to explore and take in the lovely sights of the lagoon and mountains. We saw lots of bird and some fishlife also. Just to finish the trip off we had a lovely coffee in the sun at the end of the trip chatting about our experience.
We throughly recommend this activity to people who want to experience some native , peaceful waterways off the beaten track.

Thank 67Kezza27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 March 2017 via mobile

Take the time to drive to Okarito Village. Do some hiking and kayaking. We arrived a day earlier than our booking trying to re-arrange our schedule so we could accommodate our rescheduled heli hike. Baz could not have been more helpful. While we enjoyed a coffee he worked out a rebooking and accommodated us the afternoon. Becky our guide took us a nice trip across the lagoon and up the river. She did a good job adjusting to the pace of our group. As we returned, we were treated to a beautiful view of the NZ Alps. This is a very peaceful adventure. You can rent kayaks or take a guided tour.

Thank Golfchief
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 March 2017

Different way to experience Franz Josef. Our family of four had a great time paddling and even saw the rare white heron. Staff careful to schedule you based on tide and weather conditions -- paddling in can be challenging if the wind picks up. Ample instruction and navigational guidance. Scheduled half day trip but 2 hour option would have been sufficient. Spend time exploring the rivers.

Thank 354juner
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 19 March 2017

As part of New Zealand Trails Heritage Hiking Tour we arrived at Okarito Kayaks for an afternoon adventure. It had been a rainy morning on the drive there and none of us were looking forward to paddling around the Okarito Lagoon. The weather turned for the better just as we arrived and all was good.

Our guide Simon had more personality than a game show host and made the whole experience delightful. Neither my wife or I are experienced kayakers so the patience of our host helped, particularly at the end when they took us into a trickier area to see a waterfall. This proved a bit uncomfortable navigating the boat.

The highlight was a family of Black Swans, goslings in tow, that were beautiful to watch, even at a distance.

With the heavy rains they had the week before, water levels were high which made the lagoon ideal for our kayaks and the sky was cloudless by this time – so nearly perfect.

Where it proved very disappointing for us was the lunch that was provided at the boat house cafe – some tragic egg thing served that was borderline polyurethane and a salad only suitable for rabbits or guinea pigs. Great hospitality and the Lattes and cookies helped take the edge off lunch bag let down, but were extra. Otherwise, almost perfect.

Thank Ric R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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Okarito, West Coast Region
Franz Josef, Westland National Park (Te Wahipounamu)

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