Kaikoura Journals

Kaikoura--Wildlife Paradise

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A February 2005 trip to Kaikoura by stomps

Topspot Backpackers Photo, Kaikoura, New Zealand More Photos
Quote: I was in Kaikoura for a day, but it was long enough to play in a pod of 300 dolphins!

Kaikoura--Wildlife Paradise

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Overview

The missing mountains Photo, Kaikoura, New Zealand
Quote:
Our trip to Kaikoura, our first stop on the east coast of the South Island of New Zealand, started off great when our bus driver (for Atomic Shuttles) stopped off at an area just before the town where there were loads of seals lounging around on the rocks... and little baby seals bouncing around in the water! They were adorable, but apparently only from a long way away--our bus driver told us that if we got too close, the mothers would attack and we wouldn't really be enjoying the rest of our trip.Anyway, the next day, we went on a dolphin swim, which was the reason we stopped in at Kaikoura. The swim was absolutely amazing and definitely one of the highlights of my entire abroad experience. I...Read More

Topspot Backpackers

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Hotel

Topspot Backpackers Photo, Kaikoura, New Zealand
Quote:
This hostel was a very nice, very small backpackers' hostel located just up a very large set of stairs from the main street in Kaikoura. It was pretty easy to find--we got dropped off at the bus stop, and there was a sign for Topspot that pointed up the hill. The owners of the hostel lived in the building right next to the actual house that was the hostel, so it was obviously very small and contained. Upstairs there was a good lounge room with a TV and (FREE!) Internet access, provided you could stand waiting in line for it. We actually had to use our sleeping bags at this hostel since they didn't provide bed linens, but since we had them with us, that wasn't a big issue. I was a bit worried about bed...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 6, 2006

Topspot Backpackers
22 Deal St.
Kaikoura, New Zealand
+64 (3) 319 5540

Adelphi

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Restaurant | "The Adelphi"

Quote:
When we arrived in Kaikoura around 8pm, without any food to our name, we didn't expect to be eating much for dinner. All of the cheap takeaway restaurants in town had obviously been closed for at least a few hours, and many of the restaurants were either closed or looked like they were in the process of closing as well, which made sense, since Kaikoura is a rather small town and it wasn't exactly bustling at this time of night.After making our way down the main street, all the way to the train station (just to see what was there), we ambled our way back and found that the Adelphi bar and restaurant was open. The Adelphi is very hard to miss, since it has "The Adelphi" written down the side...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 21, 2006

Adelphi
26 West End
Kaikoura, New Zealand
+64 0(3) 319 5141

Encounter Kaikoura/Dolphin Encounter

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Attraction | "Dolphin Encounter"

Encounter Kaikoura/Dolphin Encounter Photo, Kaikoura, New Zealand
Quote:
Amazing, amazing, amazing. That was the one word that we kept repeating over and over again after going on the Dolphin Encounter. It was absolutely... well, amazing. I've never experienced anything like it before.You start off getting into a wetsuit (which can be a task in itself), and then having a short orientation about what to do and what not to do when you are in the water. Then you get on a bus for a short ride, and then onto the boat. In our case, once we got on the boat, we were in for a 15-minute ride through the thick fog, every once in a while with the guide shouting, "Oh look, an albatross!" When we eventually found our spot (and the other boat), we weren't even too far from land (...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on April 6, 2006

Encounter Kaikoura/Dolphin Encounter
96 Esplanade
Kaikoura, New Zealand 8080
+1 033196777

Southern Paua

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Attraction

Southern Paua Photo, Kaikoura, New Zealand
Quote:
Southern Paua in Kaikoura is very eye-catching. You will see it if you are driving into town from the north (or coming in on the train, since it is just outside the train station underneath the rail bridge)—it is on the main road and one side of the building is painted like a paua shell. For those that haven't seen the wonder that is paua, it is a shellfish, in the same family as the abalone. However, it is much more colorful and only found in New Zealand because it is only there that the water is cold enough to form such amazing colors. The paua shell really is amazing because it can vary from green to purple to blue in all sorts of interesting patterns, and it also looks different when viewed from d...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on April 19, 2006

Southern Paua
2 Beach Road
Kaikoura
+64 (3) 319 6871