Head north along the inland route, and you’ll find yourself in the heart of Kaikōura. This small coastal town is known for its marine wildlife and whale-watching, as well as its laidback atmosphere and range of delicious seafood restaurants. Spend some time exploring the unique landscape from atop a scenic mountain bike trail, or take a leisurely stroll along the shoreline to get up close with local seals and dolphins. Whether you choose to relax or explore, Kaikōura is the perfect stopover for your first day of travel.
Sightseeing #1: Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway
The Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway offers a unique, coastal experience full of memorable experiences. The track takes three hours, but those looking for a shorter journey can explore the various sections, which each offer something different. Along the walkway, you will be rewarded with absolutely stunning views of New Zealand’s South Island’s east coast, complete with snow-capped mountains in winter. Plus, there is an abundance of wildlife to discover, including whale, dolphin, seal and bird species, plus crayfish! Moreover, be sure to take note of the informational panels which portray the unique history and biodiversity of the area.
Sightseeing #2: Ohau Point Seal Colony
Ohau Point Seal Colony is a unique sight for any traveller in Kaikoura. Here you can witness the marvellous display of New Zealand fur seals resting and playing on the rocks, providing a mesmerizing view that will surely stick to your memory forever. Apart from admiring their beautiful physical features, you can also observe their swimming skills while they alternate between sunbathing and swimming in the ocean. This remarkable experience of being so close to nature will stay with you long after your journey ends.