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“hector dolphins to the left & penguins to the right :)” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Curio Bay Natural Heritage Centre

herndon, va
Level Contributor
100 reviews
43 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
“hector dolphins to the left & penguins to the right :)”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 April 2013

when you arrive at the "T" intersection (if you are driving south on waikawa-curio bay road), the hector dolphins will be to the left (toward porpoise bay) & the penguins to the right (at the same site as the petrified stumps). an hour or so before sunset is supposed to be a good time to see them walk/waddle/hop from the water to their nests.
also, when you drive up to the porpoise bay car park to look for the dolphins, don't get tricked by the small parking area on the right that you come upon first (the body of water you'll be looking at from there is curio bay... you want to be looking at porpoise bay). instead, drive just a little further up to the first parking area on the left. park there and walk out to the beach/rocks. if you watch patiently (it only took about 5 minutes for us), you will eventually see the small dolphins playing in the water. :)

Visited March 2013
Helpful?
4 Thank cdc2f
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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43 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
Elanora, Australia
Level Contributor
62 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“Swim for free with a rare dolphin”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 March 2013

This is a truly magnificent bay. Held within its waters Re the Hector's Dolphins. Yes the water is still fresh but the experience of being close to several dolphins at one time is truly a memory that you will never forget. There is no problem attracting the dolphins they seem to want to interact with you.

Visited March 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Foxtail48
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Feilding, New Zealand
Level Contributor
55 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Nature at its best”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 February 2013

We stopped at this beautiful bay on a hot February day and were lucky enough to find a delightful Bed and breakfast unit without pre-booking. The camp site at this bay only caters for camper vans, tents and caravans so it is wise to pre book accommodation at peak times. We hit the surf (not overly warm water) and found we were swimming with dolphins, walked down to see the petrified forest and were amazed at the quality of information on the forest rock formations and the Yellow eyed penguins. We returned at dusk (7 pm) to see the penguins dotted around the bay at vegetation level, calling out to their partner or parent who popped up out of the kelp and started to waddle in land. This was a slow process so allow plenty of time if you want to see them reach their family. A ranger kept an eye on the birds,, and visitors to make sure their territories were not breached and was available to talk to.

Visited February 2013
Helpful?
5 Thank geminigirl53
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Arrowtown, New Zealand
Level Contributor
27 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Curio Bay - My Favourite Place in The Catlins”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 January 2013

We spent 4 nights at The Curio Bay Campground overlooking Porpoise Bay & what a great place. Amazing views, including Hectar's dolphins, NZ fur seals & yellow eyed penguins all close by. And what a stunning beach, with enough surf to have fun in, plus a rocky headland for the kids to go exploring along !! And warm enough in Jan to swim in without a wetsuit, on a good day !! And lastly, friendly staff at the campground, even if the facilities are somewhat dated...!!

Visited January 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank James W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Doha, Qatar
Level Contributor
78 reviews
39 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 133 helpful votes
“Fossil forest”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 January 2013

Easy access via well kept boardwalk and stairways. Have your camera ready. The main attraction is the fossil forest, best seen at low tide when you can walk round the fossil stumps. If you're lucky there may be a few yellow eyed penguins. Please keep you distance, they are very timid.

Visited January 2013
Helpful?
Thank HeyJude433
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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