Kaikoura is a picturesque town on the East Coast of the South Island, just 2 hours north of Christchurch. It’s the perfect stopover on your drive from Christchurch to Marlborough, but more than that, Kaikoura is the ideal place in New Zealand to encounter marine wildlife. Whales, fur seals, and dolphins inhabit Kaikoura’s water year-round, making it an appealing destination in any South Island itinerary. If whale watching by boat or scenic flight or swimming with dolphins and ever-playful seals is not your thing, the bird-life, cultural experiences, and scenic coastal walks might be!
Kaikoura has a handful of cute shops, cafes, and restaurants, and visitors would miss out if they didn’t try their famous crayfish. After all, in the traditional language “kai” means food, and “koura” means crayfish.