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

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Kids Cruise Free in Akaroa

akaroa dolphins

Kids cruise free in Akaroa these April school holidays with us at Black Cat Cruises*.

We are setting sail every day, twice and day and you and the whole whanau are invited!

Join us in Akaroa for our multi-award winning Akaroa Nature Cruise. Cruise through a majestic extinct volcanic crater on board our large double decker catamaran.

As we cruise through this geological wonderland we’ll go in search of native wildlife such as the worlds rarest and smallest dolphin, the Hector’s dolphin, along with New Zealand Fur Seals, Little Blue Penguins, and many types of coastal birds. With unimpeded 360 degree viewing platform, a large inside cabin complete with free tea and coffee for mum and dad and coloring activities for kids, this is a wonderful way to spend a few hours of your holiday.

Each cruise lasts two hours, and we even offer a Hector’s dolphin guarantee. If you don’t see a dolphin you can cruise again for free!

Simply book directly with us online.

When booking use code FREEKIDS to receive your discount

*1 free child per full paying adult

april school holiday activity

 

April School Holiday Fun – Quail Island’s Big Beautiful Bird Trail

april school holiday activity for kids

School holiday fun is here on Quail Island!

If you are looking for a school holiday activity in Christchurch then look no further….
Best of all adults cruise at kids prices throughout the April school holidays ($15 return per person).
So what’s it all about?
Well, six native New Zealand birds are hiding around Quail Island.
These Big Beautiful Birds have been painted in watercolour by a local Lyttelton artist. Each piece of art has been blown up and printed on very large boards, so they look amazing and will be hard to miss. You will also be given a map to help you locate all of the birds. Each bird is accompanied by some facts to help teach our younger generation about our native wildlife.
So we invite you to come and explore Quail island and find them all, whilst learning about each bird.
Complete our fun fact sheet and we’ll reward you with surprise treats on your boat ride back to Lyttelton.
A boat ride, fresh air, education, exercise, nature and fun all rolled into one!
The April school holiday starts on Saturday April 17th and goes through to Sunday May 2nd, 2021
Boat departs twice daily from B Jetty in Lyttleton harbour.
Departures:
10.15am and 12.15pm
Return:
12.30pm and 3.30pm
Online booking is recommended which you can do right here

Wine Tasting Cruise with Melton Estate, Lyttelton Harbour

christchurch christmas cruise wine tasting


SATURDAY 21ST NOVEMBER, 4PM – 6PM

Join Black Cat Cruises and Melton Estate for a wonderful pre-Christmas wine tasting cruise on on Lyttleton harbour.

During the cruise Melton Estate will guide you through a complimentary tasting of five spectacular wines. These will include;

  1. Summer Love Sparking 2019
  2. Sauvignon Blanc 2020
  3. Pinot Rose 2020
  4. Pinot Gris 2017
  5. Pinot Noir 2017

We will exclusively sell Melton Estate wine on board the Canterbury Cat for the duration of the cruise and Melton Estate will also provide the opportunity to pre-purchase your Christmas wine.

Delicious platters provided by our local catering partner will also be served as you sip on wine and take in the stunning harbour scenery.

It’s the perfect pre-christmas get together opportunity.

Tickets are limited and we predict they will sell out so don’t be too late to book.

You can book tickets directly here by selecting the date of November 21st.


Due to alcohol being served this event is strictly for over 18’s only. Thank you

  • MELTON ESTATE
  • If you’re unable to join us on the cruise you can always visit Melton Estate and enjoy the taste of local boutique wine, only 15 minutes from Christchurch Airport.  There are 9 different wines to try, including the acclaimed “Summer Love Sparkling”.  Walk amongst the vines or sip wine inside the modern winery restaurant. Combining winery style and sophisticated facilities, Melton Estate is the perfect choice for lunch, wine tastings, weddings and other family celebrations, as well as company conferences and meeting events. Opening Hours: 10am to 5pm Thursday to Sunday, and by arrangement.

Mother’s Day Lyttelton Harbour Nature Cruise

Celebrate the special lady in your life this Mother’s Day!

Canterbury Cat
Cruise Lyttelton Harbour this Mother’s Day

Enjoy a 1.5-hour scenic cruise on Lyttelton Harbour aboard our spacious catamaran “Canterbury Cat” and make this Mother’s Day one to remember.

Take in the stunning local scenery as you sip on a delicious She Universe hot chocolate and you might even spot a Hector’s dolphin!

DATE & TIME

Choose from two departures available on Sunday May 12. The boat departs at 11:00am returning at 12:30pm.

PRICE

$39 for an adult pass
$19 for a child pass (5 -15 years)
FREE kids under 5 years

TO BOOK

https://blackcatcruises.ibisnz.com/Departures or call +64 3 328 9078

Departs from B-Jetty in Lyttelton.

2019 Quail Island Easter Egg Hunt

Quail Island Easter Egg Hunt

Our annual Easter Egg Hunt hosted on beautiful Quail Island is back once again!

Take the family or gather up some friends this Easter for a fun-filled day on Quail Island. Search the island for coloured tokens and exchange for scrumptious Easter eggs*.  On your journey discover along the way old shipwrecks, cheeky native birds, volcanic cliffs and hidden caves!

The Easter Bunny is getting prepared to leave thousands (yes thousands!) of delicious chocolate eggs with us.

Tickets are limited! Making this the hottest and tastiest Easter activity in town!

Quail Island Easter Egg Hunt

When is it?

The Quail Island Easter Egg Hunt will happen from Friday 19 April through to Monday 22 April 2019.

What time?

There are 3 times you can head out to Quail Island on the Easter Egg Hunt:

10:30am – 1:00pm
11:30am – 2:00pm
12:30pm – 3:00pm

Please note you must depart and return at the times stated on your ticket.

Who can go?

Our Quail Island Easter Egg Hunt is designed for absolutely any age! Quail Island is a wonderful place for families and friends of all ages.

How much is it?

Children under 5 years: Free
Children 5-15 years: $15.00
Adults: $30.00

How can I book?

Firstly, you must book your tickets with us. This can be done by calling 0800 436 574 or jumping online at www.blackcat.co.nz.   We highly recommend booking in advance because we sell out on every day, every year

How does it work?

Come down to B Jetty in Lyttelton at least 15 minutes before your departure time. Our skipper will be there to welcome you on board the Canterbury Cat as you then cruise across Lyttelton Harbour to disembark at the wharf on Quail Island. Our Black Cat Cruises crew (along with the Easter Bunny of course) will have hidden coloured tokens around the island. Every guest on our Easter Egg Hunt is encouraged to collect a maximum of three coloured tokens which we then swap for your chocolate eggs on your ferry ride back.

Don’t forget!

Find the golden egg to win a GIANT CHOCOLATE BUNNY. There will be one golden egg hidden every day over the long weekend.

The Quail Island Ferry now operates all year round.

Exploring Quail Island
Exploring Quail Island

Akaroa – 10 Free Things To Do!

akaroa beach

That’s right, a whole list of free awesome things to do in Akaroa!

akaroa waterfall
Newton’s waterfall in Akaroa
This summer there’s a whole heap of fun to be had on the peninsula. From family fun, scenic escapes or a road trip with your mates, Akaroa can cater to you all. Of course when you visit we recommend an Akaroa Harbour Nature Cruise or a Swimming With Dolphins experience, but hey, Akaroa is full of fantastic gems and we want to share some of these with you.
So if you’re planning a trip to Akaroa soon and want some recommendations than read our pick of 10 free things to do in Akaroa while you’re there….

1. Newton’s Waterfall

Did you know that there is a waterfall in Akaroa? Enjoy walking, but short on time? Well this is the perfect de-tour for you. Try the Newton’s Waterfall walk, departing from Aylmer’s Valley Road. It’s a pretty easy 10-minute walk to the waterfall which flows all year round.
If you want to park the car near the waterfall what is at the end of Aylmers Valley Road, you have the option to (Please be aware that there is a limited of parking space).

akaroa lighthouse

2. The Akaroa Lighthouse

Did you know that the Lighthouse has been in Akaroa for over 40 years? It is now run by dedicated volunteers.  The best time to visit is on Sundays from 11am-2pm or on cruise ship days.
Have a look at this historic building, all it takes is a 10 – minute walk from Akaroa town along the water and through the beautiful nature. And make sure to take a picture in or around the lighthouse to remember the beautiful historic building.

3. The Ōnuku Marae. onuku marae

Picture perfect The Ōnuku Marae has been around for centuries and has been involved in some significant and historic events including the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi. Want to see the real culture of New Zealand ? Then take a visit to the Ōnuku Marae.
The Ōnuku Marae is located 5.2km away from the township and is a 9-10-minute walk along the coast and through the trees.
 For more information visit www.onuku.nz

4. The Rhino Walk, Akaroa

Yes we have Rhino and more in Akaroa….well it is wildlife albeit metal. This relaxing walk from the township to Childrens Bay will treat you to some fantastic wildlife sculptures along the way. Set against the backdrop of Akaroa harbour it’s a great way to spend a couple of hours. With a very short walk you can walk from the Akaroa town to the grass hill.
Go and explore the beautiful sculptures made from recycled metal that have been turned into something magical!

5. Jump into Summer! 

Want to go and have some water fun with your friends on a nice warm day? Come down to the beach and spend an afternoon jumping from the pontoon. You might even play a game of who can stay on the longest, or who can make the biggest splash! Remember to be safe when in and around the water…and slip, slop, slap that suncreen on!

6. Akaroa Skate Park

Good on wheels? Then take so time for the kids and adults to let off some energy down on the skate ramp.
Whether it’s with your BMX, your scooter, or skate board come down and enjoy the fun all year round.
Located at the very beginning on the right just before you hit the shops.
For a list of Skate parks in the region visit the councils web page here www.ccc.govt.nz/rec-and-sport/activities/skateparks/

7. Akaroa Beach

akaroa beachAfter all that exploring how about some time to lie down and relax. Kick back, work on that tan and just chill in the shade.
Whatever you fancy, simply grab your beach gear and come down.
If you’re feeling active you could play some beach or water games, bring down your kayak or paddle board and go explore the scenery or pack a good book and simply lay still and soak up some summer.
Listed as one of the best beaches in and around Christchurch! christchurchnz.com

8. Akaroa Museum

An absolute Akaroa treasure. If you want to find out more about the fascinating historical French township of Akaroa and the history of Banks Peninsula. Its varied collections include archives, art, photography, costume and textiles, taonga, and technology.You can also learn about what buildings are heritage buildings, and they provide a research service.
With it being open from 10:30am – 4:00pm during the winter and 10:30am – 4:30pm in the summer months you can come and visit 363 days a year for free.
Visit their website akaroamuseum.org.nz

9. Akaroa Playground

Akaroa is a great place to visit with children and the playground is a great spot for them to have a good run around.
Situated just behind the war memorial with views over the water front it’s a beautiful spot to have some fun. We suggest grabbing yourself a coffee and the kids some ice creams from the Sweet As Bakery on your way! Yum!

10. Delicious Akaroa

Speaking of ice cream did you know there’s a couple of cool spots to try some complimentary food tastings.

Interested in a little free fudge tasting or a delicious piece of cheese?
Come down to Pot Pourri to try some cream and butter fudge. Pot Pourri is located just as you come into Akaroa on the right-hand side after the playing field. They hand make a variety of fresh delicious fudge daily and offer a complimentary tasting before you buy.
Check out their Facebook page here .facebook.com
Or if you are more interested in the cheesy side of things then you must stop off at the Barrys Bay cheese factory to try some traditional handcrafted cheese.
Local New Zealand cheese, made by local people…they’ve been handcrafting cheese’s for over 120 years.
 Find out more here /www.barrysbaycheese.co.nz
We hope we’ve tempted you for a visit! Here’s to a great Kiwi summer of fun!