For a start, you will not be able to go on a whale or dolphin watch tour at Cape Reinga ;-)
You might spot a whale occasionally near the North Island but the only place where you have a very good chance of seeing them is off Kaikoura in the South Island.
For dolphins you also have tours in the North Island:
- Bay of Island (tours off Paihia, Hole in the Rock)
- Bay of Plenty (Whakatane, Tauranga/Mt. Maunganui):
I once went on a dolphin tour in Auckland but did not see any dolphins. They say their dolphin viewing rate is 90% and whales 75%...
Don't be fooled by these companies giving you a free tour voucher if you do not see any whale or dolphin. Which tourist has the time to do the half-day trip twice? I still have a voucher rotting in a box despite being in Auckland from time to time. If the weather is not perfect the tours are cancelled, and if the weather is fine but the sea is not, they don't go out either. So just consider it as a possibly not very exciting cruise ;-))
- If you go on a scenic tour in Whitianga (Coromandel Peninsula) you have a good chance of viewing dolphins and sometimes also whales.
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