Half-Day Dolphin Viewing Eco-Tour From Picton

Per Person
Book this tour with

Tour Information

Key Details

  • Mobile Voucher Accepted
  • Duration: 4 Hrs
  • Language:
  • Departure Time :
    Briefing begins at 8:30am
  • Departure Details :
    E-Ko Tours, 1 Wellington Street, Picton 7220, New Zealand
  • Return Details :
    Returns to original departure point
  • Cancellation Policy :
    This activity is non-refundable Tours booked using discount coupon codes will be non refundable.


Enjoy some of the majestic dolphins that visit the sheltered waters of the scenic Marlborough sounds. Degree qualified guides will be there to ensure you (and the dolphins) have an enjoyable and safe experience. Whether you see a school of dolphins leisurely cruising along or marvel at their high leaps, back-flips and somersaults during social bouts, dolphins are a magnificent sight! Our Department of Conservation permits allows us to seek out and interact with all species of marine mammals that live in the Sounds.


Informative, friendly and professional guide

Family friendly

Know More about this tour

Your half-day dolphin viewing experience will begin at our base shop (address to be provided on voucher) at 8:30am. We conduct a thorough briefing before each tour to ensure you know what to do and how to act around the dolphins.

You will then be taken out into the Sounds. There are 5 different species of dolphin that frequent the waters. They include Dusky, Bottlenose, Common, Orca and the rare Hector's dolphins. Once out in the water we will look for at least one of those 5. You will be provided with binoculars on board so you can help us look for the dolphins, as well as ID cards of various marine animals and sea birds.

Once spotted, well cruise with the dolphins and get as close as we can without disturbing them. As a permitted operator, we abide by the rules and regulations established for dolphin swimming and viewing activities. For viewing you are able to get very close to the animals and marvel how they role on their sides to look at you on the bow of our boat. Your guides will tell you interesting facts about the dolphins as you view them.

After the experience we will serve hot drinks and some cookies which you can enjoy while we cruise back to Picton. Unlike other dolphin swimming and viewing operations around New Zealand where several boats are on the same group of dolphins, we are Picton's only Dolphin Swimming and viewing operator.

This tour will primarily operate in an area of little to no sea swell - meaning seasickness is not an issue for our guests. The scenery is stunning in the sounds and provides a beautiful backdrop for viewing wild dolphins.



Professional guide


Hotel pickup and drop-off

Additional Info

Confirmation will be received at time of booking

Children must be accompanied by an adult

Not wheelchair accessible

Near public transportation

Infants must sit on laps

Most travelers can participate

This experience requires good weather. If its canceled due to poor weather, youll be offered a different date or a full refund

This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If its canceled because the minimum isnt met, youll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund

This tour/activity will have a maximum of 30 travelers

Face masks required for guides in public areas

Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff

Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas

Gear/equipment sanitized between use

Transportation vehicles regularly sanitized

Guides required to regularly wash hands

COVID-19 vaccination required for guides

Traveler Reviews

See all reviews
  • 29-Nov-2022

    Bereits der Empfang am Office war sehr warmherzig und toll, die Fahrt mit einem erstklassigem Captain und einer sehr aufmerksamen Guise war ein Erlebnis in der tollen Natur Pictons. Und es gab reichlich Delfine zu sehen. Wir kommen gerne wieder.

  • 25-May-2022

    Very experienced, friendly staff. Knowledgeable about wildlife and surrounding areas and were able to find many rare species of birds and a wonderful pod of bottlenose dolphins.

  • 16-Apr-2022

    We saw a pod of cheeky hectors dolphins, who were delightful to watch. Unfortunately we did not see any other dolphins. The tour staff were friendly and accommodating. Lovely views of the Marlborough Sounds.

  • 10-Apr-2022

    Getting so close to the dolphins.was an amazing experience well worth it. Staff were friendly and helpful and loved talking to all of us on the boat.

  • 04-Nov-2020

    Excellent tour. Knowledgable and friendly captain and guide. We had a great viewing of both a pod of dusky and common dolphins. The walk to the top of the hill was interesting and the views nice. Weather wasn't great, but no one can be blamed for that!!!

  • 31-Aug-2020

    E-Ko Tours is a very professional and environmentally friendly company. Staff are very knowledgeable about the natural environment. Excellent.

  • 08-Jul-2020

    Saw so many dolphins, seals and amazing birds - great experience with friendly knowledgeable crew - would’ve be even richer experience to have a local Maori perspective for the history.

  • 25-Feb-2020

    This was an amazing awesome morning highlight was seeing the hectos dolphin such a rare animal and privilege. Then to walk on the island to see the birds and views great !

  • 28-Dec-2019

    Fast handling of passengers. The guides showed little interest and child-friendly is something else. Either the lady has no children or has no idea how to deal with children. It is probably not normal to ban a baby's mouth that is screaming because it needs a bottle. Thanks to the ruthless nature of the boater, I lost my sunglasses in the sea. Here I stood with my 3 year old son on the boat top for animal watching, like everyone else. Then brief information the journey continues, everyone should go in. Then it went full throttle and had to be really careful that my little son didn't fall into the sea! General conclusion: a scenic excursion, despite the fact that we only saw a dolphin. The handling and handling of paying customers is pure disaster and absolutely not recommended. In German: Schnelle Abfertigung der Passagiere. Die Guides zeigten wenig interesse und Kinderfreundlich ist auch was anderes. Entweder hat die Dame keine Kinder oder keine Ahnung im Umgang mit Kindern. Ist wohl eher nicht normal einen Baby den Mund zu verbieten das gerade schreit weil es ein Fläschchen braucht. Dank der Rücksichtslosen Art des Bootfahrers verlor ich meine Sonnenbrille ins Meer. Hierbei stand ich mit meinem 3 jährigen Sohn an der Bootsoberseite zum Tierbeobachten, wie alle anderen auch. Dann kurze Info die Fahrt geht weiter, alle sollen rein. Dann ging es schon vollgas los und musste echt aufpassen das mein kleiner Sohn nicht ins Meer fällt! Generelles Fazit: Landschaftlich ein supertoller Ausflug, trotz das wir nur einen Delfin gesehen haben. Der Umgang und die Abfertigung zahlender Kunden reinste Katastrophe und absolut nicht zu empfehlen.

  • 19-Jul-2019

    Very informative commentary by Tania and friendly skipper Andy was great with kids on board. We were lucky to spot so many pods of dolphins and even “ghost “ on our tour. Bird life was interesting and we were lucky with great winter weather. Hot drinks n biscuits on way back plus wine n mussels was a bonus. Service from E-ko tours was very good. I would highly recommend them.

See all reviews