Today we are exploring the Akaroa Harbour at speed.
This morning we are going to be trying to beat the rain so are joining the team from Akaroa Jet Adventures for an early jet boat tour. In their office we are getting all the gears we need for jet boat tour we’re getting a spray jacket, we’re getting a life jacket we’re getting a bit of a safety instructions and as soon as everything is fitted we are heading toward the harbour.
In front of the boat we’re gonna be getting more of a briefing, about what kind of experience we are looking for the safest experience is in the front seats with two seats with seatbelts and the most epic experience is on the back seat with serious g force and little splashing perfect for thrill seekers with heaps of cameras like we are.
As soon as we leave the wharf we are getting to see instantly how fast these New Zealand jet boats are. The jet boats are a New Zealand invention and this one in particular has a twin V8 cobra engine with 600 horsepower.
Usually New Zealand jet boat tours go on the rivers but this is a first time actually getting to experience a jet boat out on the sea there’s a little bit of swell so there’s a lot of bumpy sections but that just makes it all the more thrilling.
But this tour isn’t just about the speed, it’s also about seeing some of the highlights of the AKaroa Harbour and the Akaroa Harbour itself is actually the crater of an ancient volcano. The further along the harbour we go the more epic the scenery gets with some dramatic cliffs and Critter is even pointing out a valley which is full of Nikau Palms this is southernmost point of New Zealand where these palm trees are growing and it’s right in this little microclimate.
Critter is super knowledgeable about the Akaroa Harbour and he’s getting us super close to some really interesting rock features one of the best ones is Cathedral Cave named because it has amazing acoustics and it’s super huge as well.
This tour was really awesome. We are going at fast speed through every single highlight of the Akaroa Harbour. it’s really awesome if you have ADD like me and you have a very short attention span you want to do that one tour. you just speed through you see something, click, click, couple of pictures and you speed through the other way. It’s really cool and Critter knows every nooks and cracks of the Akaroa Harbour and he also is really good at spotting wildlife like this awesome little blue penguins. They are super small and on the surface of the water they’re very hard to spot but he does spot three of them for us today.
Now we’ve done with one side of the harbour we’re gonna be crossing all across this massive volcano and making our way toward the other side. there is a lot more sights that we want to see and Critter wants to make sure that we see everything before the rain shows up.
Needless to say, that I’m super impressed by that boat it’s absolutely crazy how quickly we’re going from one place to another and how amazingly powerful the whole engine is. We feel like we’re completely stuck at the back of our seat.
The next spot that we are seeing is the paua and salmon farm which are farmed right here in the harbour and it’s sustainable farming they are constantly monitored by members of DOC in the area so it’s a really sustainable practice and Critter makes sure that we remember that fact.
So we have seen some amazing scenery of the Akaroa Harbour, we’ve seen wildlife, we’ve also learned about the industries here but Critter is also now showing us a historic site of the Akaroa Harbour as he takes us to a bay where we can see a World War 2 bunker . He tells us stories of fishermen having to use morse code with a torch in order to show the people at the bunker that they were not Japanese invaders.
After telling us a few more local stories, Critter is taking us to come of the little hidden bays and inlets of the harbour which are absolutely stunning. During the 50 minutes that this jet boat tour lasts, we’re actually learning so much about the Akaroa Harbour in between experiencing the thrills of how fast this jet boat can go. And we’re actually surprised at how cheap this tour is. It’s under 80 bucks.
And Critter is not holding back on our way back towards the Akaroa Wharf. He’s going full speed and of course in any jet boat tour you need to experience the 360 spin. He puts full revs onto the boat and it just flings round super super fast as we do a full 360 degree spin on the water.
This is one of the unique things that these jet boats can do.
Basically we had a blast on the Akaroa harbour this morning and as the boat is finally making it’s way back toward the Akaroa Harbour itself and the tour is coming to an end we are reflecting on all the stuff that we’ve seen today. it’s absolutely incredible the amount of stuff that we’ve seen and that was a great way to get our mind off campervan troubles. We’re going to be doing even more sailing around Akaroa so don’t miss it.
He’s putting full spin on the engine and giving us some serious giiiiiz. g force… haha. You clearly got overexcited from the 360 spins. I’m getting some serious giiiiz.
So Critter is putting the engine at full speed and is giving us some serious G force. Godammit.