Welcome to Banks Peninsula, home of The Hector’s dolphins and eco-tourism pioneers Black Cat Cruises

Category Archives: Lyttelton New Zealand


Our two largest vessels, Black Cat and Canterbury Cat now have defibrillators on board. These brief case sized medical emergency kits allow our team to better face any medical situation on board. As the only boats on the harbours with this equipment we are now an even safer option for your customers. The ‘defibs’ cost 8000 and were supplied by the Red Cross.


Hi, Just wanted to say thanks to all the staff who helped us get our car keys back from Quail Island last Wednesday – we are very grateful! Everyone was so friendly and helpful – and we will certainly be recommending the island to any of our friends who go to NZ! Thanks again,

I had the pleasure to be part of the Akaroa Area School Fundraiser held last week. This included a fantastic Akaroa harbour cruise, a wonderful seafood buffet with live entertainment. The weather gods presented a perfect evening and the wildlife rallied in support of our cause. What a truly magical night and an awesome experience for those who supported this fundraising event. This success was due to fantastic generosity accorded to the project by your company Akaroa Black Cat Cruises. Without your support we could not have undertaken such an activity.

The outcome was extremely positive with Gary Brittenden and his talented support team raising just under $4000 to support the Akaroa Area School Stars programme for 2010. The K2 Youth Development Trust wish to acknowledge your support in this formal letter of thanks and reiterate that together we are making a difference in your very special community.
Thank you so much.
Terrence Courtney,
K2 Youth Development Trust.


The first Hector’s dolphin calves of the year have appeared with two seen in Lyttelton last week and one in Akaroa Harbour. The dolphins are quite dark when first born and some have stripes which fade quickly. A baby Hectors is only marginally larger than a rugby ball, so they are quite vulnerable when first born. It’s vital these dolphins survive because they are literally the future of the species.


We have a new boat into our fleet as a back up Diamond Harbour Ferry. Although she is new to us she has been round a while being the very first Fiordlander that Real Journeys built and has spent its life in the Southern Lakes of Te Anau, Milford and lately Wakatipu as back up to Earnslaw. She has even carried many VIPs including the Queen herself and makes a great addition to our fleet.


A Korean fisherman who fell overboard in Lyttelton Harbour this morning owes his life to the crew of a tugboat and the skipper of the Black Cat Cruises Diamond Harbour ferry.

The man was thought to have fallen off the trawler at about 6am on Thursday morning and was spotted by the crew of the Blackadder tug operating in the harbour.

The tug crew threw him a life ring but were unable to haul him aboard and enlisted the help of the Diamond Harbour Ferry and its skipper John Rocheford.

Rocheford single-handedly rescued the man in the choppy early morning seas in very dark conditions. The man was treated for hypothermia by paramedics

“We think he was in the water for 20 minutes,” Black Cat Cruises managing Director Paul Bingham said.

“He didn’t speak any English and our skipper showed excellent seasmanship, skills and strength to haul him on board in tough conditions.”

All in a days work for a Black Cat Skipper!