Your Tour Experience


Welcome aboard! Your safari departs from the Viaduct Basin - just a short walk from all the major hotels and hostels in Auckland Central.                                                          

Jump on board our 65-foot (20-metre) catamaran and settle in as we head out to explore the beautiful Hauraki Gulf Marine Park, one of the most abundant and diverse marine parks in the world.

From our large open deck, enjoy views of famous Auckland landmarks like the iconic Harbour Bridge, North Head and Devonport, and volcanic Rangitoto Island. All while watching out for orca and dolphins known to frequent the city-side waters.

As the crew provides knowledgeable commentary on the harbour’s ecosystem, our marine-science experts conduct biological studies and invite you to join interactive research activities.

Because we’re venturing into a wild, natural environment, every trip is different and the marine wildlife we encounter varies from day to day. We typically encounter Bryde’s whales and common dolphins, but you may also meet pygmy blue whales, New Zealand fur seals, sharks, manta rays, turtles and up to 26 species of seabirds - including the little blue penguin.


As we return to Auckland, sit back, take advantage of our licensed café and bar, and enjoy the island views. And if you’re ready to learn more, there’s an optional research presentation. 


Once we dock at Viaduct Harbour, it’s a quick disembark, a big thank you for supporting our marine wildlife studies, and goodbye from the 'Dolphin Explorer' crew.