Oamaru Blue Penguin Colony

Please contact the provider directly to make your booking enquiry. Their contact details can be found below...
+64 3 433 1195| [email protected]| www.penguins.co.nz 17 Waterfront Road, Oamaru 9400, New Zealand
Point of difference

Come and discover the world of the little blue penguin. Your visit contributes to our long-term conservation and research programmes where for care for and learn about the penguins' lives.

Directions from nearest town

3 hour drive south of Christchurch International Airport and 1½ hours north of Dunedin, Oamaru is a natural place to stop for a break.

Situated just 5 Minutes from the centre of town, the Oamaru Blue Penguin Colony is one of the easiest places in New Zealand to see the little blue penguin.

The Oamaru Blue Penguin Colony is located just minutes from the centre of Oamaru.

Since its establishment in 1993, and because of its conservation efforts, the Colony has observed very high breeding success in the penguin population, increasing from 33 to 220 breeding pairs and up to 300 penguins returning each night.

Little (blue) penguins are the smallest of the world's 17 penguin species, and one of only 2 to nest underground.

The penguins are either hidden inside their nests during the day, or out at sea fishing. The return ashore from fishing just as it starts to get dark, usually around 30 minutes after sunset. In the evening, visitors watch from purpose-built grandstands while only metres in front of them the penguins come ashore, climb the rocks, and enter the breeding area.

Visitors to the Colony, in the evening, can experience a fascinating eco-tourism environment, gain insight into the lives of the blue penguin, and be part of the Colony's world-leading conservation efforts.

Prior to Covid the Colony offered day-tours, these will be re-established after the international border reopens.

FAQs view details


The Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail is a grade 2-3 (easy to intermediate) cycle trail. There are a variety of trail surfaces. Riders are advised to take certain essentials with them (e.g. first aid, repair kit, water, food). Parts of the trail pass through alpine environments, where conditions can change.

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Getting Here view details

Getting Here

Located in the South Island of New Zealand, halfway between Christchurch and Queenstown, is the Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail. It is recommended that you start your ride from Aoraki/Mt Cook - though there are numerous access points along the trail from which to start or end your ride.

Trail Details & Maps view details

Trail Details & Maps

Each of the 9 maps show the elevation, trail surfaces, fitness, skill, traffic, safety notes, and highlights. Please consult the maps to ensure you are prepared for what you'll encounter on each section. Some sections are easy, others more difficult.

See & Do view details

See & Do

Want to know what you can do while visiting the South Island of New Zealand during your ride?

See our Instagram photos #Alps2Ocean
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