Swim with the Dolphins Cruise

Swimming with dolphins in the warm waters of The Bay of Islands is truly a once in a lifetime opportunity! View marine mammals and swim with wild dolphins, onboard Explore NZ's purpose built 14.6 metre catamaran, Discovery III.

In the Bay of Islands Maritime Park you will encounter both bottlenose and common dolphin. You also see a variety of whale species including: Orca (killer whales), Brydes, Pilot, Minke, Sei, Humpback, and very rarely the Blue Whale. You also encounter blue penguins, gannets, various sea birds and the New Zealand fur seal.

A short briefing is given before a swim takes place when passengers are given the option of wetsuits & snorkelling gear and instructed on how to behave while interacting with the dolphins.

Experience this unique opportunity of swimming with dolphins in The Bay of Islands on your next New Zealand holiday.


  • Swim with the Dolphins (conditions permitting)
  • Bay of Islands Maritime Park
  • See whales, penguins, seals


  • Cruise
  • Hot showers
  • Complimentary tea/coffee
  • Wetsuits, snorkels and fins are provided
  • Swim with the dolphins (conditions permitting)


Operates: December - April
Departs: Paihia wharf B 1.00pm and Russell Wharf 1.10pm
Returns: 4 hours later

Operates: May - October
Combines with Discover the Bay Cruise
Departs: Paihia wharf B 9.00am & 1.30pm and Russell Wharf 9.10am & 1.40pm

Additional Info

Please note: There is no guarantee of swimming with dolphins. Explore Group Limited operates with a Department of Conservation permit however, for the protection of Dolphins and other marine mammals, interaction with them is governed by the Marine Mammal Protection Act. If the conditions of the Act are not met or the sea conditions are not safe then some trips will be viewing only. If dolphins or whales are not seen, a non-transferable voucher will be given to come again for free, this is not a money back offer.
Please bring: swimming gear, sunscreen and a camera
Children: Aged 5-15 years are at the child rate. Children 0-4 are not catered for.
Operated By: Explore Group Limited - Dolpin Discoveries