A normal Sunday turned into an "exciting experience" for a Napier family, after they followed a couple of orca around Napier's coastline.

Wanda Vermeulen said her family "jumped straight in the car" after she saw a post on Facebook about orca swimming near Ahuriri. When they arrived, the two whales had moved on and the family drove to Westshore, then Bay View, hoping to spot them.

Without any luck at Bay View, the family were getting ready to leave when Ms Vermeulen spotted the two adult orca rising out of the water, which was an "all-new kind of excitement".

The family, who moved to Napier from South Africa in February, had seen orca in captivity, but Ms Vermeulen said "it's much more beautiful when you see them in their natural habitat".

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Earlier this month, an orca pod of one large male, two females and two juveniles were seen coming close to shore at Westshore Beach.