Summary of The Day: We are very excited to now offer you, keen bird watchers, three different options for experiencing the plethora of rare and wonderful birds the Queen Charlotte Sound has to offer. All options include time spent on the water cruising the Queen Charlotte Sound in search of a large variety of sea birds that inhabit the area, including one of the world's rarest sea birds, the King Shag!
Motuara Island Bird Sanctuary Experience (4 hours)
Departure Time: 7:15am (Summer) and 1:15pm (year round)
This experience provides the opportunity to view a variety of land and sea birds including the very rare King Shag. Found only in the Marlborough Sounds, the King Shag is considered a prize amongst birdwatchers.
Learn about the wildlife from our degree qualified guides as we take the time to enjoy the species that call these waters home. Predator-free Motuara Island Bird Sanctuary is a bird-lovers paradise and home to blue penguins, South Island Saddleback, Kereru, Bellbirds, Yellow-crowned Parakeets (Kakariki), NZ Falcon and South Island Robins.
Enjoy a 1-hour bush walk to the top of the island for the added bonus of amazing view across the Cook Strait to the North Island. The birds here are plentiful, fearless and very vocal and if you sit quietly, they may even come within an arm's reach! Other species likely encountered include dolphins (Dusky, Bottlenose, Hector's, Common or Orca), NZ Fur Seals, Spotted, Pied and Little Shags, Variable Oystercatchers, White-fronted terns, Australasian Gannets, Fluttering Shearwaters, reef and white-faced herons, arctic skuas (seasonal) and much, much more!
This experience departs Picton at 7:30am for an hour long nature cruise before being dropped at Blumine around 8:30am. You are then free to explore the beautiful island for 2 hours from Camp Bay. You can follow the clearly marked track to the World War II gun emplacements which takes about 45 minutes each way. Along this track you will see and hear many species of native bird as this island with its own water source has multiple species of birds and also very rare carnivorous snails.
For Bird enthusiasts this is the island to see the incredibly rare Orange fronted Kakariki. We have a 90% success rate on finding this elusive bird and bird watchers from all over the world come here to photograph and view these amazing creatures. Before we drop you off on the island we will tell you our secret method for success.
After your time on the island we will pick you up at 10:30am for a cruise back to Picton as we search for dolphins and other wildlife before returning you safely to shore at 11:30am.
The Double Bird Sanctuary Experience is an exciting new full day tour that gives you an exclusive opportunity to visit both Blumine and Motuara Bird Sanctuary Islands.
On Blumine you get the opportunity to hike through the bush to the historic WWII gun emplacements, camp with friends and family or search for some of New Zealand's rarest bush birds. This predator free bird sanctuary is home to the South Island Saddleback, Bellbirds, Kereru, Tomtits, Tui, Weka, and the very rare Mohua and Orange Fronted Parakeets - New Zealand's rarest bush bird!
On Motuara you will get to learn about the wildlife from our degree qualified guides as we take the time to enjoy the species that call this unique island home. Predator-free Motuara Island Bird Sanctuary is a bird-lovers paradise and home to Blue Penguins, South Island Saddleback, Kereru, Bellbirds, Yellow-Crowned Parakeets (Kakariki), NZ Falcons and South Island Robins.
The trip departs Picton at 7:30am for an hour long nature cruise before you're dropped off at Blumine around 8:30am. You are then free to explore the Island for 6 hours before being picked up at 2:30pm and taken to Motuara Island Bird Sanctuary for a guided walk. After your walk we will cruise back to Picton in search of dolphins and other wildlife before returning you safely to shore at 5:30pm.
Briefing time is 30 minutes prior to the departure time.
* Adult: 16 and above
* Child: 8-15 years of age
* Children under than 5: NZD 30.00/pp
* Tour prices are based on New Zealand dollars (NZD) and converted into US dollars (USD). Constant fluctuations in the exchange rate cause prices to change on a regular basis. You will be charged the price based on the applicable exchange rate at the time of payment. All transactions are final. We do not offer discounts or compensation to those citing lower prices at a later date.
The tours may be cancelled due to poor weather conditions. If a tour is cancelled by us before the scheduled departure because of safety concerns arising from poor weather, you will be entitled to receive a full refund.
- 30 or more days prior to the departure date: 10% of tour cost will be charged.
- 16-29 days prior to the departure date: 50% of tour cost will be charged.
- 0-15 days prior to the departure date: 100% of tour will be charged.
1.Immediately after submitting your reservation you will receive a Receipt of Reservation via email.
2. Within one to two business days of submitting your reservation you will receive a confirmation email from us. If you need to book an airline ticket, we recommend that you do so after you receive a confirmation of your tour reservation from us.
3. An E-Ticket will be sent to you via email as soon as details of your reservation are confirmed or your supporting information is received by us. We will provide you with all detailed information about your tour on the E-Ticket. Contact information for local tour provider will be included on E-Ticket for your convenience or re-confirmation purpose if re-confirmation is required.
4. Simply print your E-Ticket and present it with your valid photo ID on the day of your activity to your tour guide. Please remember E-Ticket is your proof of purchase.
- Your purchase does not guarantee confirmation. Your purchase will initiate a reservation process. We will confirm with you via email within one to two business days.
- Prices may vary due to availability. We reserve the right to make price adjustment without prior notice.