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Marlborough Sounds Cruise Ship Tours NZ

Passengers & Crew

Worry-Free Guarantee

All tours are designed to meet the cruise ship's port arrival and departure times. If for any reason you are not returned to your ship prior to its departure we guarantee to get you to the ship's next port of call 🙂

As long as there have been cruise ships calling at Picton, E-Ko Tours has been amazing passengers and crew with unique experiences that truly are, the best things to do in the Marlborough Sounds. 

Whenever a cruise ship is making a port call in Picton we offer unique and specialised experiences to cater to the individual needs of cruise guests.

To find out what there is to do while your cruise ship is in town, call +64 (0)3 573 8040 or email today so we can help you organise your unique experience and get ready to have an adventure for your Soul!


Queen charlotte sound

Alternatively, check out some of these experiences and get yourself booked today so you don't miss out!


BEST 2 Hours Tour in Marlborough for Passengers 🙂 Guaranteed Return to Ship on Time


Below Tours are over 4 Hours (see Booking Terms below)

Why choose E-Ko for Your Marlborough Sounds Cruise?

  • Only company in Marlborough permitted to actively search for and interact with dolphins and whales
  • Only company in Picton with marine bioligist guides
  • Exclusive access to unique areas and wildlife
  • Personal service
  • World class Skippers
  • Purpose built boats
  • Unparalleled level of local knowledge and expertise
  • All equipment provided

Booking Terms for 4 Hour Tours

  • The Motuara Island Sanctuary and Dolphin Cruise will depart at 08:30 at the latest on Cruise Ship days

  • Cruise Ship Passengers who have booked onto this tour MUST contact us directly at 03 573 8040 to confirm they will be attending the tour by 07:30 on the day, at the absolute latest. No messages please - confirmation must be made by phone

  • If Cruise Ship Passengers are unable to make the 08:30 tour due to a delayed arrival, we can transfer their booking onto our 2 hour Wildlife, Beach & Wine Cruise and we can offer a refund of the difference in price on the day

  • For Cruise Ships that are staying in Picton late, the Motuara Island afternoon tour which departs at 13:30 will arrive back to the Dock at 17:30. We can arrange a Shuttle for passengers from the Dock which will arrive back at the Cruise Ship at 17:45

Cancellation Policy for 4 Hour Tours

  • For a full refund, Cruise Ship passengers must cancel their booking 12 hours prior to the tour departure.

Discover the Best Cruise Ship Tours NZ Has to Offer

So you've heard how amazing Marlborough Sounds is, and now you're wondering how you can experience it for yourself. Your best chance of seeing those marvellous marine mammals and rare land and sea birds is to leave from our Marlborough Sounds cruise and let our experienced and dedicated crew teach you all about our delightful local environment. Read More

Here at E-Ko we are passionate about sustainable and responsible tourism, and we want to help achieve the goal where mammals are free, the ocean thrives and the community cares. We want to give back to nature, and that's why we've partnered with the World Cetacean Alliance, and why we are the only cruise ship tour in Marlborough permitted to actively search and interact with dolphins and whales.

All our boat trips are from Picton NZ and use purpose-built boats with all equipment provided, including onboard binoculars. We are the only company in Picton with WCA-certified marine biologist guides, we have highly experienced skippers and we have been granted exclusive access to certain areas. Our aim is to provide you with a unique wildlife experience that is conservation focused.

What You Will See on Marlborough Sounds Boat Trips

By choosing one of our Picton Marlborough Sounds cruises you will discover the unique biodiversity that the area has to offer and learn all about its rare and endangered inhabitants from our highly trained and knowledgeable team.

Marlborough Sounds sits on the north-easterly tip of New Zealand's South Island, and its eternally calm and well-protected waters and narrow waterways make it a delight to explore by boat. Don't worry if you have absolutely no sea legs at all, we offer a 100% guarantee that you will not get seasick on any of our cruise ship tours in NZ - we are the only tour company to offer such a guarantee because we are so confident in the sturdiness of our Queen Charlotte sound boat trips, the skills of our captains and the tranquility of the crystal blue waters that we will give you your money back if you get sick.

Our expert guides will help you to identify Hector's, bottlenose and dusky dolphins, orcas, New Zealand fur seals and other seasonal cetaceans that may appear, including southern right and humpback whales. We are also the only tour operator in Picton that has a Department Of Conservation permit allowing us to seek out respectful interaction with these marine mammals, and allowing our guests to swim with wild dolphins.

E-Ko Tours' Best Boat Trips in Picton NZ

Situated on the easterly most point of the Marlborough Sounds, Queen Charlotte Sound (Totaranui) is coastal candy for the eyes. Admire the pristine natural forests and tranquil beauty from our Queen Charlotte Sound cruise and discover the scenic and historic Motuara Island which lies at the entrance of the sound.

Motuara Island is not only a predator-free bird sanctuary, where fearless birds are plentiful and very vocal, but it is also home to Ship Cove (Meretoto) where Captain Cook spent 171 days and proclaimed it the "most beautiful place in the Pacific". Get up close to rare, yellow-crowned parakeets and saddlebacks, meet the resident blue penguins and listen to the melodic sound of bellbirds.

Don't delay, book our Queen Charlotte Track and Marlborough Sounds boat trips with E-Ko Tours today! Read less

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