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. 

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Whale
Whale
diving
diving
albatross
albatross
Seal lions sunning themselves on t…
Seal lions sunning themselves on …
swimming with the dolphins
swimming with the dolphins
our boat
our boat
Kaikoura
photo by: bluemarbletreader