Coastal kayaks in Abel Tasman
Explore the truly beautiful coastal Abel Tasman National Park with a day's kayak hire, priced from $85 each, or pay $105 each to kayak from Marahau to Anchorage, see the resident seals and take a water-taxiride before walking a stretch of the Abel Tasman track, surrounded by native birdsong. Marahau is about an hour's drive from Nelson or you can cross over Tasman Bay by ferry.
Contact: R&R Kayaks at Marahau, freephone 0508 223 224, email firstname.lastname@example.org or book online at rrkayaks.co.nz
On the trail of a whale in Kaikoura
Kaikōura was the first community in New Zealand (and second in the world) to achieve Benchmark Status and Certification Status through the EarthCheck Sustainable Destinations Programme. One of the coastal town's best known adventures is Whale Watch. As New Zealand's only vessel-based whale-watching company, Whale Watch takes its passengers to sea for up-close encounters with the giant sperm whale, and the company guarantees an 80 per cent refund if a tour does not see a whale. Children under 3 are not permitted on the tour. Family and group discounts are available. Nearby accommodation options are plentiful and before your visit is over, you can purchase a native tree through Trees for Travellers which will be planted locally (iwk.org.nz/trees-for-travellers).
Contact: kaikoura.co.nz/stay forgottenworldadventures.co.nz/routes-and-trails/ and whalewatch.co.nz, email email@example.com or
freephone 0800 655 121
Conservation in action in Queenstown
The Kiwi Birdlife Park in the heart of Queenstown manages breeding programmes for more than 20 species of native birds and reptiles, including South Island kākā, North Island brown kiwi, pāteke (brown teal), whio (blue duck) and tuatara. Kiwi Encounter tickets, the park's Conservation Show and tickets for self-guided audio tours through 2ha of native forest are all half-price, starting at $15pp. You can also book a private tour, discounted by 20 per cent to $384. These tours take two to two-and-a-half hours and are limited to six people.
Catamaran dolphin cruise from Akaroa
Spot Akaroa Harbour's endangered Hector's dolphins on a catamaran wildlife cruise — there's even a trained dolphin-spotting dog on board to find the rare and speedy little dolphins. Passengers get to enjoy fresh baked cookies and a drink along the way. The double-hull catamaran offers more stability and deck space than a single-hull boat, ensuring a comfortable spot as you scan for fur seals, white-flipper ed penguins and other wildlife.
An Akaroa Dolphin Cruise is discounted by 20 per cent for trips taken by September 30.AFamily Pass covers two adults and two children under 15 and currently costs $200. Redeem the discount when booking online, using the code HOT DEAL FAMILY PASS.
Contact: Akaroa Dolphins (03) 304 7866, email firstname.lastname@example.org or book online at akaroadolphins.co.nz
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Get away to Milford's most remote lodge
One of the most remote lodges in New Zealand, Milford Sound Lodge proudly "lives and breathes environmental sustainability".
It offers riverside chalet accommodation from $225-a-night to a choice of $50-a-night campervan sites. There are also some accommodation and adventure packages, including kayaking, and exploring the prehistoric fiord and World Heritage Site on a guided cruise.
Contact: Milford Sound Lodge, (03) 249-8071, email email@example.com or book online at milfordlodge.com/environmental-journey