Kaikoura (4): Swimming with dolphins

Friday 02/03

Montage by Ludivine: see below


By me:

We wake up around 8:30am today. No rush. We have nothing on the programme today; quite unusual…

During breakfast, I receive a phone call from ‘Dolphins Encounter’ informing me that they have 5 spots available on their 12:30pm trip. We immediately accept; it’s so much better than tomorrow 5:30am…

Kids do a short homeschooling session. I walk to the New World to buy things for making sandwiches and I then prepare them.

We arrive at ‘Dolphins Encounter’ at 12:20pm. Each of us eats his/her first sandwich. We then follow the very well-oiled process: first the gear (wet suit with hood, fins, mask and snorkel), then the introduction video, then we take the bus to the jetty where we take the boat (with the other 20 people or so).

The trip lasts 30’ before we reach the dolphins pod. There are at least 100 of them; they are dusky dolphins. We are ready and jump in the water at the buzzer of the boat captain.

We are immediately surrounded by plenty of dolphins, keen to come and “meet” us. They enjoy swimming nearby (and around) us. They come from everywhere; it’s so cool! We try to stick together but it’s not easy. We try to hold hands with Jules (Isabelle) and Florence (me). The water is cold (17C) but it’s ok. Its visibility is not that great (although they claim it is the best they’ve seen in the last 3 weeks…); but it’s some kind of fun since we only see the dolphins arriving at the last moment. Check Ludivine’s montage in the post; very nice.

The boat changes places 3 times. The team on the boat is great at dropping us at the right place, where there’s a pod of (so many) dolphins.

After about one hour in the water, we go out. Back on the boat (where many people are sick), we can observe the show of the dozens of dolphins swimming, playing and jumping in the water. It’s as exciting as it was in the water. We take a few videos.

We come back ashore around 3:30pm. What an amazing trip! Kaikoura is really a superb destination for wildlife. We have seen so many animals since yesterday morning (and in such a nice environment)!

We go back to town where we take our camper to first go to New World (mainly to buy good steaks for tonight’s barbecue) and then back to the camping park.

We booked a hot tub at 5:30pm. It feels very good; it’s so relaxing.

We eat excellent (grilled) steaks (with rice and green peas) outside but we are quickly forced to go back to the camper because of the rain.

I speak to a couple of friends on the phone (via WhatsApp); it’s always nice to catch up with them. I also speak to Pierre-Antoine, who is back to Belgium after 18 months around the world! The landing must be difficult…



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *