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  • Meet New Zealand's "friendly 5" animals

Meet New Zealand's "friendly 5" animals

Meet New Zealand's "friendly 5" animals

Wild Dolphins in Kaikoura Photo taken by: Klaus Schmitz (Flying Kiwi Traveller)

Meet New Zealand's "friendly 5" animals

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Traditionally a safari involves scorching temperatures, arid deserts, ferocious predators and a desperate hunt to spot the Big 5. Well Flying Kiwi have found a new and altogether more relaxing combination - Meet New Zealand's "friendly 5" animals. Forget lions, leopards, rhinos, elephants and buffaloes and think friendlier, think entertaining and think New Zealand.

Famed for our great hospitality and wonderful scenery we also have the five of the finest wildlife characters you could hope to meet:

dolphins kaikoura


On a Flying Kiwi trip we have numerous operators to interact with the seas friendliest showman. Whether you decide to swim with them, view them from the boat or kayak along gorgeous coasts with dolphins for company we highly recommend taking time to experience our favorite aquatic performers. Of particular note is our dolphin swimming experience in Kaikoura. Set to a backdrop of snow capped peaks and stunning coastline the dusky dolphins that frequent this area are among the most interactive in the World. Pods (dolphin speak for groups) often reach into the hundreds and they won't be shy about swimming alongside you and showing you their favorite tricks.

yellow eyed penguin Dunedin

Yellow Eyed Penguins

Another wonderful animal that calls the coasts of New Zealand home. Weighing in at around 6kg and tottering at a height of around 75cm these good looking birds make everyone smile. Wearing a band of bright yellow around the top of its head it's easy to see why it's considered the superhero of the penguin World. Aside from its good looks they are also social chaps and a great highlight for many on our Flying Kiwi trip. The best place to spot them is at the exceptionally well run yellow eyed penguin colony south of Dunedin.

Lear more about the Yellow Eyed Penguins with Yellow-eyed Penguin Trust, a non-governmental organisation with a specific focus on the conservation of hoiho across its range.

Whale watching

Sperm Whale

Weighing in around a staggering 57,000 kilograms this is the big daddy of our Friendly 5. At around 20 meters long they are the largest toothed whale in existence and potentially the smartest? With the largest brain of any modern or extinct animal we may have a lot to learn from these majestic giants. They also have access to a World we know little about with the ability to dive distances of up to 3 kilometers. Its prior to these great dives you will get the best chances to see these wonders as they perform their celebrated breach and raise their iconic tails for your perfect postcard moment. The best chances to witness this spectacle is on our whale watching trip in Kaikoura. 

Kiwi spotting Okarito

Kiwi Bird

The native kiwi bird is unique to New Zealand and one our most cherished and protected icon. Unfortunately numbers have declined but a concerted effort from numerous organisations throughout New Zealand is giving them the best possible chance to repopulate their homeland. These totally unique characters are a joy to watch and fascinating to learn about - did you know that Kiwi birds are the only ones to have nostrils at the end of their beak!! You will learn plenty more and potentially get the chance to view these wonderful birds on your trip.

Bus with sheep edited


Yes, last but not least those big fluffy fellas who are very important in New Zealand Land Wildlife. Despite an apparent drop in the ratio of people to sheep (once at a mythical high of 20 sheep to every person) it still stands at an impressive ten sheep for every individual. That leaves plenty of these friendly, fluffy faces to dot the landscape and provide your iconic shot for friends back home.