SUNSET & SUNRISE
Kaikoura has it all. Visitors travelling to this small town have an array of leisure activities to choose from, ranging from relaxation, nature, excitement, art, history, fine dining, and or culture. You can find all of that and more in Kaikoura.
Kaikoura is a town located on the eastern coast of New Zealand’s South Island just 180 km north of Christchurch. This town is special because it belongs to the Southern Alpes but is also very close to the sea. Kaikoura’s unique combination of ocean and mountains offers magnificent coastal alpine scenery as well as wonderful outdoor activities focused on eco-tourism. This town offers everything from whale watching to, swimming with dolphins, and even hiking and bird watching!
WHY WE LOVE
This New Zealand township’s geographical location renders it perfect for outdoor adventurers as well as nature enthusiasts. They can enjoy the rocky and rugged landscape of the peninsula, frolic among the lush farmland beneath the mountains, or swim within the lively waters of the South Pacific Ocean.
Kaikoura is well known for its complex marine system that provides a striking and incredibly rich habitat for marine life as well as for many seabirds. One of the many reasons we love this town so much is because it offers a perfect environment and allows visitors to get very close to nature. The area engulfs you and welcomes you into the natural world by allowing you to enjoy its complex ecosystems. Kaikoura is the perfect place to swim with marine mammals, hike, and even birdwatch! The coastal town is in fact considered one of the best and most accessible places in the world to see open ocean seabirds. This region of New Zealand is home to fascinating birds like albatrosses, petrels and shearwaters, including the Hutton's shearwater which nests high in Kaikoura mountains.
This New Zealand treasure was once famous for its whaling industry and has now become one of the leaders in marine mammal conservation. Now, travellers from all over the world can visit Kaikoura and watch whales, dolphins, orcas and seals enjoy their natural habitats.
Not to mention, the Kaikoura Peninsula is absolutely stunning with its bright green fields, colourful houses, nearby snow peak mountains and sharp cliffs that rush into the sea. Kaikoura is a land of contrast, ideal for photography.
DID YOU KNOW?
- Kaikoura is a compound word. In Māori 'kai' means food and or meal, 'koura' means crayfish. This makes sense considering Kaikoura is famous for having an abundant amount of crayfish.
- In 1770 the famous European explorer Captain Cook discovered the Kaikoura peninsula, although he mistakenly thought it to be an island.
- With around 2,100 inhabitants, the Kaikoura District is home to less than one percent of New Zealand's total population.
- Kaikoura became the first official location in the Southern Hemisphere to become EarthCheck certified. This means that Kaikoura is a town that takes environmental protection and social responsibility very seriously, so much so that they have a myriad of different standards in place.
- The 2016 Kaikoura earthquake has been described as the "most complex earthquake ever studied".
- Kaikoura lies within the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary.