Whales and Dolphins in Traditional Maori Carvings

In New Zealand bone carvings of whales and dolphins reflect the strong spiritual bond between the Maori people and aquatic mammals.

Read on ...

Bottlenose Dolphin
bottlenose dolphin Jigsaw Puzzle

The link opens in a new window. Puzzle, compete, or send  an e-card.

The link opens in a new window. Puzzle, compete, or send  an e-card. 
Did you know you can customize photo puzzle with more than 1000 pieces to solve them with family and friends on long winter evenings?


Legends tell that whales guided and protected their ancestor’s sea-journey to Aotearoa. Other stories convey that individuals rode whales back to the mainland when trapped on an island or going overboard on a fishing trip. The Whale Rider movie was enthused by these legends.

In traditional carved bone jewelry either parts of a fluke, a whale, or dolphin sometimes with their calves are figurative expressions. Their symbolic meaning is protection on any travel of long distances. While the harmonious and playful characteristics of dolphins are associated with harmony and love in friendship and family.

In the occasion a whale beaches it is regarded as a gift of the gods. The preservation process of the bones takes several years. In the past particularly prized whale bone jewellery became family heirlooms that were handed down for many generations.

Where to watch Whales and Dolphins

These aquatic mammals are some of the most fascinating ocean creatures. New Zealand is fortunate to be close to waters where year round pods of whales and dolphins have their feeding grounds.

On the east coast of the North Island dolphin discovery tours start from Auckland or from Paihia in the Bay of Islands where on request pick ups from Russell are available. The tour leads into the Hauraki Gulf where a richmarine wildlife occurs with about twenty-two identified species of mammals.

On the South Island, Kaikoura is the whale watching metropolis where giant sperm whales, the sea acrobats the dusky dolphins, seals, and albatrosses can be observed year round.

Akaroa on Banks Peninsula near Christchurch is home to the hektor dolphins that are also called New Zealand dolphin. Tours leave regularly to watch and swim with the smallest dolphins.


Dolphin and Whale Watching Cruise

Auckland dolphin discovery tour

Go on a half day long cruise, departing from Auckland, to watch out for seabirds, dolphins and whales in the pristine waters of Hauraki Gulf. It is just a short boat ride from Auckland’s Viaduct Harbour. Expert guides share fun facts and informative commentary about the frequenting sea mammals while cruising the waters of the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park.

In The Bay of Islands

Cape Brett 'Hole in the Rock' Cruise

Bay of Islands Tour, hole in the rock

This is the most popular cruise in the Bay of Islands. The modern high speed catamaran cruises in comfort around the Bay the famous 'Hole in the Rock' and the Cape Brett Lighthouse. The plentiful islands offer a multitude of landscapes with marine wildlife encounters like dolphins and penguins.


Kaikoura Whale and Dolphin Overnight Tour

whales and dolphins

Experience all in one, watch whales and swim with dolphins, on this journey from Christchurch to Kaikoura. This is an overnight delight in a small coastal town for all those who wish to take part in an unmatched marine experience. Dive into the oceans and swim next to these amazing mammals.


Swimming with Dolphins in Akaroa

Akaroa, swimming with New Zealand dolphins

Make a date with the worlds smallest, rarest and friendliest dolphins only on Akaroa Harbour. There is only one place on the planet where you can swim with Hector Dolphins also known as the New Zealand Dolphin and that is the beautiful sheltered Akaroa Harbour.

Return to top

  | | Whales and Dolphins

New! Comments

Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.