Recent blog posts

Posted by on in Black Cat News
NZ Bucket List Badge Small
We love adventure and awesome, authentic experiences...and we love nothing more than delivering some of the best New Zealand activities from our homes in Akaroa and Lyttelton. We believe it's important to have goals and passions and one interpretation of that is to have a bucket list.....a wonderful list of things you simply have to do, try or experience during your lifetime.   So we'd love to know what's on your bucket list? Do you even have one? Well if you do you are possibly similar to us in that ours is always growing! If you don't we have the...
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Jucy hotel christchurch
  It was only one week ago that we were meeting Rt. Hon. John Key, Prime Minister of New Zealand and Minister of Tourism at The New Zealand Tourism awards. Fast forward 7 days and we're back in his company at the official launch of the brand new (and first of it's kind in NZ) Jucy Snooze hotel based at the Christchurch International Airport.  It's the perfect place to spend the night when flying in or out of Christchurch, and of course particularly great if you have spent the day in Akaroa cruising or swimming with Hector's dolphins and need to...
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quail treat me
 Don't miss today's Treat Me deal offering half price adult and child tickets to Quail Island. We only offer these once a year and when they have sold out, they've sold out. Whilst we usually start our Quail Island trips in October we will be kicking off early with these vouchers in time for the Christchurch and Canterbury school holidays next week! Hurrah!! Whilst today Quail Island is a wonderful place for people of all ages, offering long coastal view walks, a fantastic family friendly swimming beach, cool old shipwrecks and an information hut the island itself has a very...
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Posted by on in Black Cat News
keep calm fist
We're a little bit excited over here at Black Cat Cruises! We fist pumped a few weeks ago when we found out we were finalists in The New Zealand Tourism Awards...however now you can help us secure one of the best awards of all.... Do you have a spare 20 seconds today? If so we would LOVE your support by clicking on this link to vote for us in The New Zealand Tourism Awards. Your vote is for the People's Choice category which would be phenomenal to win as we end our 30th season because it's you who chooses...and...
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TIA Awards Email Signature Finalist
It is with immense pleasure that we are able to announce that we have been selected as a finalist in the New Zealand Tourism Awards 2016.   As we come to the end of a record season for Black Cat, and one that happened to celebrate our 30 years in business we are all feeling so grateful for everything we have managed to achieve whilst delivering our world class Akaroa Harbour Nature Cruise, Swimming With Dolphins experience and the Quail Island and Diamond Harbour Ferry. From epic TVNZ wildlife coverage, Quail Island Tree Planting, Akaroa community littler pick ups to the...
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wildlife akaroa 098
Ever wondered how nature has inspired the way we as humans design, create and live? Being avid ocean wildlife and conservation supporters we are fascinated on a daily basis by the environment we work in and the marine mammals and wildlife that we work with. Has the behaviour or structure of our seas and / or its inhabitants played a part in modern technology? We asked leading British Biomimic William Lawson to deliver us a series of blogs around the subject so that we can share a sneak peek into this wonderful world of science with you...........     For a...
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Posted by on in Wildlife Spotting
Humpback whales akaroa new zealand
As an eco-tourism operator in Akaroa who for the longest time has spent decades taking customers out every single day to view the worlds rarest and smallest dolphin the Hector's dolphin (also known as New Zealand dolphin as they are only found in our waters) we must say that we too gasp with joy when we have the opportunity to spot a pod of whales with our customers. On occasion we will have pods of Orca pass by and during the winter if we are very lucky we may see a humpback whale or two as they migrate north past New...
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Akaroa Wharf Building
In a huge boost for Canterbury tourism Black Cat Cruises has started a $1 million extension of its visitor and retail centre on Akaroa wharf. The investment, recognising increased tourist numbers, has been welcomed by Christchurch & Canterbury Tourism as a strengthening the “visitor proposition” for the region. The revitalisation project includes the removal of old cold stores, part of the Black Cat Cruises centre, to allow a larger building with more retail, customer and staff facilities. Whilst the project takes place over the winter their Akaroa Harbour Nature Cruises are still operating daily. The eco-tourism operator’s new building design includes...
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video play image
We've been tight lipped and just bursting for last nights episode of The Bachelor NZ to air! It was down to the final three ladies and we were stoked to host The Bachelor Jordan and his date Fleur in Akaroa on what was one of the shows 'fantasy dates'. We couldn't think of anything better!   Click HERE to watch their Swimming With Dolphins experience with us in Akaroa We've also got a gallery full of images here which include some stunning scenic and wildlife shots... A BIG thank you to TV 3 for choosing us as the host of their Akaroa dolphin...
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AkaroaNZ pics
Last Saturday Black Cat Cruises in partnership with Christchurch and Canterbury Tourism and Kiwi Instagrammer Kyle Mulinder aka @barekiwi hosted Akaroa's first ever instameet....and what a success it was!  We were overwhlemed with not only the wonderful mix of nationalites from Kiwi to Canadian that attended, but just how far some people had travelled! I mean seriously travelled...on planes, trains, automobiles and even a scooter all the way from Queenstown. All to visit our beauitful Akaroa, meet likeminded indiviudals whilst sailing out on the Black Cat to see and photograph the sunset over the pacific ocean. But before we go anyfurther...
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NZAEE Seaweek logo TM
 “Toiora te Moana – Toiora te Tangata – Healthy Seas, Healthy People”.  The theme for this year's Seaweek celebrations To celebrate we have two fantastic events happening with the first kicking off this Sunday.... The Blue Cruise For $50 you can join us for a special Seaweek 'Blue Cruise' this sunday Feb 28th...with Black Cat Cruises donating 100% of the proceeds to New Zealands Whale and Dolphin Trust The Blue Cruise is an Akaroa Harbour Cruise with a little ocean themed twist....complimentary blue buttercream cupcakes and a surprise gift! To book simply call us on 0800 436 574 to secure your space. ...
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Live at the point
Wondering what to do in Christchurch this summer? Well we have the answer....grab some friends or the family and jump on the Diamond Harbour Ferry to cruise across Lyttleton Harbour and enjoy one of the many 'Sunday Sessions' planned this summer.... The annual summer series of Live at the Point kicked off with a mixture of gospel, country and generally sweet music from The Eastern on the 3rd January 2016. They then follow with the dates below... January 2016: 17th - Phoebe Leyten and Nomad 24th - Fiona Pears 31st - the Brooms February 2016: 7th - Lindon Puffin 14th - Los Farsantes It's the perfect...
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Posted by on in Wildlife Spotting
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Black Cat Cruises is the only company in the world that I have taken a day off as holiday to work! Well I mean when your company is an eco-toursim operator that offers world class dolphin cruise's and swimming in the wild with the world's smallest and rarest dolphin's set in an extinct volcainc crater...wouldn't you? I've told friends and colleagues this before much to their amusement and understanding...and it seems it's not just me at Black Cat that does this. Last week our dolphin swim skipper Julian arrived at work extra early to join our early morning Swimming WIth...
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Posted by on in Uncategorized
He's our most raved about skipper on Tripadvisor, knows the history and wildlife of Akaroa harbour like no other....and is generally an all round amazing guy! We took 60 seconds to find out a little more about Akaroa's top skipper to find out what really floats his boat....... (and if 60 seconds just isn't enough you can watch Julian's 114 second video here)   What is your name and what is your role at Black Cat Cruises... Capitano Juliano – Black Cat skipper Where is your role based? Akaroa Harbour What three words would you use to sum up Akaroa/Lyttleton... Picturesque,...
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Posted by on in Uncategorized
camping on quail island
Have you heard about this little Island close to Lyttelton? No?! It is such an interesting place, rich in history and scenic landscapes all easily explored in one day. Perfect for a day out in Christchurch! Let me show you where it is and what you can do there….. Location: Quail Island is a small island but Canterbury’s largest one, located within Lyttelton Harbour in the South Island of New Zealand.(Retrieved from: DOC, It is only 20 minutes from Christchurch city centre (by car) and easily accessible by the Quail Island Ferry from Lyttelton. Black Cat Cruises operate a regular...
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Posted by on in Tourist Information
toasting marsmallows
What better way to spend your summer nights with the family than pitching a tent and sleeping under the stars? Banks Peninsula is full of spots that are perfect for such an endeavour, and many people take advantage of that fact during our warmer months. If you’re thinking of roughing it for a few nights in Canterbury’s great outdoors, here are ten things you could bring to ensure your New Zealand camping trip is a great success: Camp fire entertainment – Marshmallows, a pack of cards or any other board game really. Stock up on the kids’ favourites to wind down...
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Posted by on in Akaroa New Zealand
Akaroa hills
Banks Peninsula Volcanoes – Hot or Not? To many in the area, Banks Peninsula is a beautiful place to relax, soak up a bit of local culture, or spend the day exploring and adventuring around the bays. But there’s more to this iconic part of the country than meets the eye. For those into geology, geography, or just good ol’ volcanic eruptions, Banks Peninsula’s Lyttelton Harbour proves to be a point of interest. Between six and eleven million years ago, volcanic activity formed two volcanic cones that overlapped. After being subject to erosion and rising sea levels, which flooded the valleys...
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Baby Hectors dolphin calf and mother by Krystal
The next generation of the world's rarest dolphin species has been captured in photos and on video! See our exclusive images and video content below.... International passengers from the cruise ship Dawn Princess who were on a Black Cat Cruises, Akaroa Harbour cruise or Swimming with Dolphins cruise were delighted to spot the first Hector’s Dolphin calf of the season yesterday (Sunday 29 November).  Black Cat Cruises Sales & Marketing Manager Natasha Lombart says the crew spotted four adults and a baby calf in the upper harbour near Wainui. “Seeing dolphin calves is brilliant, as Hector’s Dolphins are endangered so it...
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Posted by on in Uncategorized
bingsamo photograph of hectors dolphins pod in Akaroa
Here's our quick run down of what it is, why we love it and how to make the most of it....... So what is Instagram? Instagram is the leading social media platform for sharing images. When it launched back in 2010 it had 1 million followers in its first month alone, so it’s no surprise that it’s become so very, very popular. Anyone can set up an account. Simply download the @instagram app onto your phone, register with your user name (for example we are @blackcatcruises) and voila…you are ready to go. Why use it? We love using it to showcase...
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BC 30yr black red for LIGHT bkgrd
It’s been a fantastic start to the new summer season for New Zealand eco-tourism operator Black Cat Cruises as they celebrate 30 years in business. Labour weekend 1985 Ron Bingham and his wife Durelle officially started Black Cat Cruises with a single boat called the Charmaine over in Akaroa. Skip forward to today and they have grown to become the largest tourism operator on the peninsula operating 7 vessels across both Akaroa and Lyttelton Harbour.   This labour weekend if your birthday falls on Monday October 26th (of any year) you can cruise with them for free!  ‘’It’s been a great...
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