Kaikoura and the whale cruise
Kaikoura Travel Blog› entry 10 of 11 › view all entries
My second to last stop and my last pre-booked activity. As I'm now nearly at the end of the trip, I was really counting on my weather curse to be broken. I didn't have an extra day to kill waiting out another storm and I certainly no longer had the patience. But no matter, it was a lovely day and very nice cruise. The way the cruise works is that it heads off shore to where there is a deep water channel where sperm whales tend to congregate. The boat is equipped with sonar and has help spotting whales from overhead planes. For every hour a whale spends deep underwater, it will spend about 10 minutes on the surface sucking up oxygen. As soon as a whale is spotted on the surface, our boat sped over to its location. We usually got there a few minutes before the spectaular dive and "whale tail" shot. Once it goes under it leaves a slick spot on the surface called its footprint. Apparently we were quite lucky today in spotting whales four times - the average is 1-2. We also had some quality time with a few pods of dolphins, some of which were doing acrobatics. One of the boat operators was running a 'swim with the dolphins' tour. We also saw plenty of albatross and a few seals. This cruise, along with the helo flight, was probably the highlight of my trip.