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“Boats fully booked because of weather and tide problems”

Kaikoura Helicopters
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: <1 hour
Owner description: Kaikoura is world renowned for its whale watching – it also boasts some of the most spectacular scenery New Zealand has to offer. Helping you experience this is Kaikoura Helicopters, the most experienced aerial whale watching company in the world. We can have you lifting off from our centrally located heli – pads and within minutes be in the spectacular environment that plays host to the magnificent Sperm Whale. From the comfort of our helicopter, experience this ultimate vantage point, viewing the entire whale from head to tail. Our exclusive alpine flights allow you to get up close and personal with some of the highest mountains in New Zealand. Land at altitude amongst the stunning Kaikoura Seaward Ranges and encounter 360 - degree views of this unique and rugged coastline. We also offer scenic flights, heli hikes, heli picnics, heli rafting, heli biking, charters, nationwide transfers, weddings, hunting, film and photography, gift vouchers, and more! Flying everyday!
Reviewed 28 February 2017

We called Kaikoura Helicopters. Lots of options. Its a 4 seater chopper. You an choose with 4 or with just the two of us. We don’t mind flying with 4 so we took that option.

After the safety briefing comes a good explanation about whales, delphin and the aftermath of the November 2016 earthquake.

Then into the chopper, its breezy so hold on to your seats. The flight is nosey (as in any chopper) but the pilot is good and fly’s smooth. After 10 minutes the first sighting. We circle around and wait for the dive. Plenty of photo opportunities. Than a second whale, a little smaller, just 8 meters.

We see 5 whales and we can hear another plane talking about a group of Duskydelphins 10 minutes away, to the south. We spotted a group there from the shore and becauseoOur time is almost up we return to base.

Was it worth it?


Thank erikdefotograaf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (122)
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"helicopter flight"
in 9 reviews
"whale watching"
in 20 reviews
"paid nzd"
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"sperm whales"
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"new zealand"
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"sea sickness"
in 5 reviews
in 16 reviews
in 6 reviews
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in 14 reviews
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14 - 18 of 122 reviews

Reviewed 15 February 2017 via mobile

They have friendly staff and you can use the AA traveller voucher to get the price down to 245NZD for a 40min flight. The pilot had good routine and found the sperm whale quick after 8min and we spend 8min to fly around the whale BUT honestly the whale seems tiny and could be a submarine, too. You don't get a feeling for its size. We found another whale then and after it dived we flow back. Just 33min flight although 40min paid :( could have spend the time remaining to find a pod of dolphins for example.

Thank marcbS8146KI
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 February 2017 via mobile

We went to book the Whale Watch cruise only to find they're fully booked weeks ahead. This is because post-earthquake they only have one boat sailing three times a day instead of six boats hourly.

Hence we opted for the helicopter tour and it's a great way to do it. They have up to the minute info on where the whales are and when they're due to surface and dive and then of course finding them in a helicopter is a lot easier. Post-earthquake they have to go much further out to find them.

I was lucky enough to spot one which they were very impressed with and we watched it on the surface for a few minutes before it dived down again. It was quite spectacular but it was the only one we saw. We didn't manage to see any dolphins or albatross.

We'd booked the 40 minute flight but only got 30-35 minutes in the air which was a bit disappointing. Nevertheless we thoroughly enjoyed it and were very glad we did it. You get such a great view of the whole area from up there.

Special mention too for the briefing which was very informative.

Thank phil100652
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 October 2016 via mobile

Thank you Pete for paying attention to the whales and their habits! We saw two sperm whales and had several minutes to take photos before they dived down again. Then the trip to Mount Fyffe was amazing, we could see all the way to the North Island. Really spectacular experience.

Thank Jenn P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 30 August 2016

I absolutely loved this experience and would recommend it to everyone. It was also cheaper than I had expected because I was able to jump in with another couple. The views of the Kaikoura peninsula are just breathtaking and the ariel view of the wales gives you a real sense of the sheer size of these amazing creatures.

10/10 Would definitely go again!

Thank Don S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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