Gary Diskin - Apr 10, 2007

Swimming can be an amazing and fun sport, especially when you dive in the waters of a crystal clear sea, but if you are willing to spice it up a little, you should definitely not miss the opportunity to swim with dolphins. One of the best destinations where you can usually guarantee a close encounter is New Zealand’s Kaikoura.


This small coastal village in a Maori region offers a range of incredible activities. The nearby mountain range provides a perfect opportunity for walking or hiking, horse trekking, skiing, and even going on scenic mountain flights. There is a great golf course and for those who have time to spare, lots of fishing opportunities. Marine life is very diverse and any dive into the local colorful waters can provide a unique experience.


Kaikoura is exceptional, however, thanks to the dolphins which gather here in their hundreds in huge pods. Tour operators usually offer two kinds of options. Watching is a very amusing activity, especially if the dolphins are in the right mood and perform some of their spectacular acrobatic jumps and tricks. Swimming with the dolphins is a more thrilling way of getting to know these marvelous mammals. The number of swimmers is strictly limited to 13 and all participants are given instructions beforehand, reminding them that they are dealing with animals in the wild, and they should not expect to have a "touching opportunity" whilst swimming. However, as dolphins have a reputation as very gregarious and exuberant creatures, any close encounter with them becomes a real adventure.


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