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Motuara Island Bird Sanctuary and Ship Cove Cruise from Picton - with unbiased reviews

Motuara Island Bird Sanctuary and Ship Cove Cruise from Picton

Motuara Island Bird Sanctuary and Ship Cove Cruise from Picton
4
Book in advance
from
€60.02
per adult
Free Cancellation up to 24 hours in advance
Reserve now & pay later: Save your spot free of charge with flexible booking.
About
Cruise from Picton Harbour to Motuara Island and beyond to see rare native birds and other wildlife on this 4.5-hour boat excursion. Spend time exploring Motuara Island Bird Sanctuary and Ship Cove, learn from your expert captain about wildlife and cultural history, and take in the gorgeous scenery of Queen Charlotte Sound. Look for endangered native birds including the South Island saddleback, king shag, little blue penguin and kiwi as well as seals and rare dolphins. Please note that this tour departs sharply on schedule at 8:00am Tea and coffee is available to purchase prior to your departure for $5 with a complimentary Keep Cup to take away with you. Tea and Coffee facilities after the Motuara Island pick up
Know before you go
  • Duration: 4h 30m
  • Mobile tickets accepted
  • Instant confirmation
Cancellation policy
  • For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.
Available languages
English
Know before you go
  • Duration: 4h 30m
  • Mobile tickets accepted
  • Instant confirmation
Available languages
English
Cancellation policy
  • For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.
Need help booking?
Call the number below and use the product code: 6607MOUTARA
Call +44 12 2492 8241
Important information
Inclusions
  • Live commentary on board
  • Restroom on board
Exclusions
  • Food
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off
Duration
4h 30m
Departure details
  • 1 London Quay, Picton 7220, New Zealand Please meet us at the Beachcomber Cruises Office on the waterfront - the Corner of Wellington Street and London Quay, we are a black building with Blue Signage.
Additional information
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Guests are welcome to bring their own food and drinks to consume on board
  • Closed-toe walking shoes suitable for walking are recommended
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Stroller accessible
  • Service animals allowed
  • We are not able to pick up / drop off at the Cruise Ship Terminal - you must make your way to our booking office
  • Please note that this tour departs sharply on schedule at 8:00am
  • Most travellers can participate
  • Not recommended for travelers with mobility constraints
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 70 travellers
Inclusions
  • Live commentary on board
  • Restroom on board
Exclusions
  • Food
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off
Departure details
  • 1 London Quay, Picton 7220, New Zealand Please meet us at the Beachcomber Cruises Office on the waterfront - the Corner of Wellington Street and London Quay, we are a black building with Blue Signage.
Duration
4h 30m
Return details
  • Returns to original departure point
Additional information
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Guests are welcome to bring their own food and drinks to consume on board
  • Closed-toe walking shoes suitable for walking are recommended
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Stroller accessible
  • Service animals allowed
  • We are not able to pick up / drop off at the Cruise Ship Terminal - you must make your way to our booking office
  • Please note that this tour departs sharply on schedule at 8:00am
  • Most travellers can participate
  • Not recommended for travelers with mobility constraints
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 70 travellers
Travel safe during COVID-19
Last updated: 12 Oct 2021
A note from Motuara Island Bird Sanctuary and Ship Cove Cruise from Picton
Beachcomber Cruises follows the current guidelines given by Tourism New Zealand and the New Zealand Government. Please call our office if you have any questions around the current requirements.
What you can expect during your visit
  • Gear/equipment sanitised between use
  • Regularly sanitised high-traffic areas
  • Guides required to regularly wash hands
What you can expect during your visit
  • Gear/equipment sanitised between use
  • Regularly sanitised high-traffic areas
  • Guides required to regularly wash hands
  • Hand sanitiser available to travellers and staff
  • Contactless payment for gratuities and add-ons
Itinerary
  • You'll start at
    1 London Quay
    1 London Quay, Picton 7220, New Zealand
    Please meet us at the Beachcomber Cruises Office on the waterfront - the Corner of Wellington Street and London Quay, we are a black building with Blue Signage.
    See address & details
  • Pass by
    Queen Charlotte Sound
  • You'll return to the starting point
+
Popular mentions

4.0
9 reviews
Excellent
6
Very good
0
Average
1
Poor
1
Terrible
1

jane
Shanghai, China1 contribution
not many birds
Dec 2019 • Solo
we only saw 2 birds on the island and some other animals on the way from afar.
to be honest, Picton and nearby is not good place to see wildlife.
Written 8 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Traveller_Hubin
ohio4 contributions
Terrific outing, terrific guide!
Nov 2019
Jason was a wonderful guide - personable and very knowledgeable. The cruise itself was relaxing with beautiful scenery (of course - it's New Zealand), and the walk through the Bird Sanctuary was lovely as well. We saw dozens of native birds at very close range. Really great experience!
Written 24 November 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hi Traveller_Hubin Thanks for taking the time to review us on TripAdvisor - we are really happy to hear that you enjoyed your cruise and the company of our skipper Jason. We were glad to hear that you saw plenty of our beautiful native birdlife in there habitat. We hope to have you cruise with us again some other time,
Written 25 November 2019
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Isabella
4 contributions
Fantastic Day Out
Oct 2019
We had a great time on this trip, very knowledgeable and friendly skippers and staff and they took us to some remote and unique locations in the sounds. We saw baby penguins and various birds and wildlife and got a feel for life in the remote wilderness of the sounds. Can definitely recommend.
Written 14 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hi Isabella-Adventure Thanks for your review, we are very happy to hear that our staff took good care of you and showed you the very best that the Queen Charlotte Sounds has to offer - we are so lucky to be able to call this our 'backyard'. We hope to see you in Picton again some other time, Kind Regards
Written 21 October 2019
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Chris S
Zurich, Switzerland185 contributions
Not enough time on Motuara Island
Jan 2019 • Couples
Maybe my mistake, but I though this was a birdwatching trip with other activities.
Seemed to spend too much time stopping at various places along the way and ended up rushed at the island and only saved the day by seeing a penguin in a nesting box.
From a bird watching point of view, disappointing.
Having said that, the Sound is magnificent and this was a great way to see it.
Beachcomber were efficient, the staff very good.
It was a good morning, but not what we hoped for.
Written 27 January 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Sally-on-the-go
Nelson, New Zealand64 contributions
Dolphins, penguins and stunning vistas
Apr 2018 • Friends
Beachcomber does a fantastic job all around -- the boat was excellent, crew very knowledgeable and friendly, and the experience top-flight. Dolphins swam alongside the boat for awhile. On Motuara Island, we were lucky enough to find two blue penguins inside one of the nesting boxes, and the piwakawakas and robins followed us the entire hike to the top and back down. DOC does a great job making this island so special for visitors.
Written 4 April 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hi Sally , Thank you for taking the time to write us a review. We are pleased to hear as a company we have provided a great service all round.We really are blessed to have such incredible staff working for us willing to go the extra mile. Motuara Island really is a secret hidden gem with so much to offer and by the sound sounds of it Mother Nature delivered on your visit ! Thanks again for your review.
Written 24 April 2018
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

AnGeLo B
Auckland Central, New Zealand58 contributions
Great Cruise to Ship Cove
Feb 2018 • Couples
Amazing service from beachcomber cruise. The captain was very helpful in explaining everything during the cruise and was an exceptional service
Written 22 February 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hey AngeloAnojan Thanks for your TripAdvisor review! I'm very happy to hear that you had a great time on our cruise and that you enjoyed our services, that's very good feedback!
Written 23 February 2018
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

lomichellefritz
Coeur d'Alene, ID34 contributions
Amazing Cruise to Start of Queen Charlotte Track
Jan 2018 • Solo
What a great team you've got here! The customer service was outstanding. I was looking for a water taxi to take me out to Ship Cove and the start of the QCT, and Beachcomber offered a very reasonable option. It was a nice clean vessel, efficient and on-time service, and they even transferred my pack from my accommodation every night - much more enjoyable backpacking experience when you only have to carry a day pack!
Written 31 January 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hey lomichellefritz Thanks for your email, im sure that we can help you out with some transport out to the Queen Charlotte Track. Thanks for your comments about our team, we do pride ourselves in providing a fantastic level of customer service so im glad that we achieved this on this day for you. It certainly makes it an easy experience to have your luggage dropped off each day along the track each day im sure it does add to then enjoyment of the days hike. Enjoy the rest of your trip
Written 14 February 2018
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Chanting Mum
15 contributions
Worst cruise ever. Don't waste your time or money.
We did the ship cove cruise and had the worst 4.5 hours ever. The commentary was mind numbing. Nothing of interest was said, just a load of boring information about the prices or features or rich owners of the houses that we passed. It became apparent early on that we had paid a lot of money to join a boat that was dropping off and moving around other people's luggage. We were on board a bag delivery service. We stopped at multiple stops that weren't supposed to happen (one of them twice - for a bag of course!) so that people who paid for a different service had their needs met, while the requirements of those who had paid for a scenic cruise were out of the window. This company bangs on about being family run etc, when all it seems to be focused on is making maximum profits. I have never seen so many bored looking people as I did on the boat. Almost everyone was trying to sleep or had their head in their hands. Everyone looked miserable. Every time the boat stopped to deliver yet more bags in more locations, there was a groan from those of us stupid enough to pay to be on board. We saw absolutely no wildlife and nor was there any attempt to see anything. So disappointing that our only day in the sounds was ruined by this awful cruise. We delivered so many bags that we arrived back late at 1.30! Worst cruise we've ever been on and definitely not suitable for small kids, who found the whole mind-numbing experience too much to take. I don't blame them! Don't waste your money. I can't comment on any of the other cruise companies in Picton because we didn't have the time or willpower to do another cruise, but this company is definitely more interested in getting maximum income than providing the service they describe. The commentator needs to learn to speak about anything but houses and house owners, and the bag delivery service should not be part of a scenic cruise.
Written 29 December 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hello TripAdvisor User We are very sorry to hear that you did not enjoy your cruise with us, most people do usually enjoy the extra stops that the boat does as it gives passengers more of a chance to see some extra scenery. Unfortunately this was a very busy day for us so we did have lots of luggage to move around the sounds which is part of our regular service which did delay our cruise. We did note that you did not make your complaint to the reservations desk upon disembarking, if you would have made your complaint known we may have been able to come up with a resolution.
Written 8 January 2018
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

GreensinOz
Chittering, Australia74 contributions
Great Trip to see Island, Sounds and Walk!
Oct 2017 • Couples
This was a fabulous trip and great value for money. The island was wonderful, especially seeing the baby penguins in the nest boxes and great variety of birdlife that can now live predator free on the island... Glorious sailing and then a nice scenic walk back to be picked up for the boat trip home... Lots of Weka around...
Written 25 November 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hi GreensinOz, Thank you for your recent reveiw. Its sounds as thou you have had a brilliant time out on the Queen Charlotte Sounds. Motuara Island is a little hidden gem with very cute penguins this time of year , little fluff balls with cute eyes! Thanks again for your reveiw and we wish you safe travels. Kind Regards, Reservations
Written 4 December 2017
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Frequently Asked Questions about Motuara Island Bird Sanctuary and Ship Cove Cruise from Picton

Motuara Island Bird Sanctuary and Ship Cove Cruise from Picton will start at 8:00 AM. Discover and book Motuara Island Bird Sanctuary and Ship Cove Cruise from Picton on Tripadvisor

Motuara Island Bird Sanctuary and Ship Cove Cruise from Picton price starts from €60.16. Discover and book Motuara Island Bird Sanctuary and Ship Cove Cruise from Picton on Tripadvisor

Motuara Island Bird Sanctuary and Ship Cove Cruise from Picton cancellation policy: For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience. Discover and book Motuara Island Bird Sanctuary and Ship Cove Cruise from Picton on Tripadvisor