Dolphins!January 18 in New Zealand ⋅ 🌙 11 °C
Our alarm went of at 5:00. We dressed up, had a cup of lemon flavoured yoghurt and walked the 5 minutes to the dolphin encounter office. It was still dark outside, silent and empty streets. But at the office was full of people ready for the tour. After waiting a couple of minutes in their café, we were led to a movie room to watch some scenic videos about Kaikoura. Probably to fill the time the swimmers needed to dress into their wetsuits. Once they were ready, we all got to view an instructional video about the tour. For the people who were snorkeling how to behave in the water, and for us and other watchers how to behave on the boat. Afterwards we were led to two busses which led us to two boats. That actually meant that the group sizes were quite small. Each boat carried only 16 swimmers and around 8 watchers.
The search for dolphins began. The two boats took on a flank formation to maximise their line of sight. It didn't take very long before some dolphins were sighted jumping in the distance. Once there we went to the deck while the swimmers were released into the water. Some dolphins were immediately curious to discover the boat and swam around and under it. We didn't really know where to look. They were so many and they were incredibly playful. One really wanted to show off and did a complete round of jumping around the boat. It's hard to describe but the pure sight of them just made us happy and smile. The cool thing about this was that this was not in a controlled environment. These were wild dolphins.
We were told that we were lucky because there were 3 kinds this morning while they usually see one or two: dusky dolphins, Héctor dolphins and common dolphins (if we remember correctly). We weren't so good in spotting the differences. We also tried asking them for a selfie with us but sadly they ignored that and just kept swimming and jumping around. So be it.
After the tour it was still only 9 in the morning. We went back to the hostel for second breakfast and some resting.Read more