NZ tour operator adds whale watching boat to fleet

New Zealand tour operator Whale Watch Kaikoura recently welcomed a new vessel to its fleet.

The newbuild is the second Whale Watch vessel to be named Te Ao Marama. The earlier vessel was in operation from 2000 to 2016.

The newer vessel has a length of 24 metres, a beam of 9.2 metres, a draught of 0.9 metres, air-conditioned interiors, and seating for up to 116 passengers on two decks. The captain’s cabin on the upper deck has VIP seating for 12 passengers while the remaining 104 passengers will be accommodated in the ocean cabin on the main deck.

Power is provided by four Scania diesel engines driving four HamiltonJet units.

Among the newer Te Ao Marama‘s features are a sickle bow hull design and an adjustable hydrofoil system to improve vessel performance and sea keeping capabilities and a Naiad ride control system that automatically reduces pitch and roll.

The vessel also has viewing decks and a grandstand area of the bow, all offering excellent visibility during excursions.

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