Picton, New Zealand
Picton is a picturesque little town known as the 'Gateway to the South Island and the Marlborough Sounds'. Picton accommodation options range from hotels, B&Bs, hostels and resorts and there are plenty of cafes on High Street. Dolphin Watch Ecotours provides visitors with a variety of nature experiences to be had on land and sea. With a surplus of natural beauty and an amazing range of wildlife, Picton and the Queen Charlotte Sound are a must-see for anyone visiting or living in New Zealand.
Dolphin Watch Ecotours operates on Picton's foreshore and is only a 3 minute walk from the Picton ferry terminal. Be sure to stop here to catch one of our eco-cruises and explore the Queen Charlotte Sound with a company that chooses to really show our visitors what the area has to offer. Go Swimming with Dolphins, take a walk on the fabulous Queen Charlotte Track, or take it all in with a half-day Scenic Wildlife Cruise to either Motuara Island Bird Sanctuary or historic Ship Cove of Captain Cook fame.
Dolphin Watch Naturetours NEW Office/Retail Shop
We've just moved in to our brand new office/retail space located at #1 Wellington Street on the Picton Foreshore (see below).
Our new shop has plenty of space for wetsuits and changerooms for wetsuit fitting, a fantastic reception area to greet our guests and now a fully stocked retail shop to take that little something special with you as a momento of your amazing experience with us. What you don't see are the little extras behind the scenes within the building construction itself that have been built in allowing us to be even more environmentally sustainable (energy efficient lighting, large amounts of natural light pouring through double-glazed windows and concrete walls keeping the temperature just right without using a heating system during our seasonal operations, etc.).
Queen Charlotte Sound, New Zealand
The Marlborough Sounds are an extensive labyrinth of sheltered waterways in the north-eastern corner of NZ's South Island. Made up of a series of ancient river valleys that have been filled in by seawater, the Marlborough Sounds are truly an incredible site. As a result of the sheltered nature of the Sounds, we rarely have to cancel tours for weather-related reasons. The Queen Charlotte Sound abounds with numerous seabirds, NZ fur seals and five species of dolphins can be seen at various times of the year – bottlenose, dusky, rare Hector’s, common and occasionally visits by orca (killer whales).
The outer Queen Charlotte Sound contains four reserve islands covered with lush native bush. Motuara Island bird sanctuary is where Dolphin Watch Ecotours conducts guided walks under a Department of Conservation concession. Here, the department of Conservation runs four programmes geared towards the enhancement of endangered species – the South Island saddleback, Maud Island frog, Marlborough green gecko and the Okarito brown kiwi.
The Queen Charlotte Sound is also home to the stunning Queen Charlotte Track. A 71 km walk with absolutely stunning views of the Marlborough Sounds. We offer full service for groups to the entire track (with free pack transfers to your overnight accommodation) and are the only Marlborough Sounds tour operator to combine a scenic dolphin cruise, Motuara Island Bird Sanctuary visit and a walk on the Queen Charlotte Track. No other QC Track operator is permitted to search for dolphins in the Queen Charlotte Sound.