Welcome to Kaikōura where the mountains merge with the coastline and the marine life outnumbers the humans!

Kaikōura is a small seaside village rich in history, culture and marine activities. The dramatic mountain views and the vibrant energy of the seashore has made Kaikōura a 'must visit' place while you're holidaying in New Zealand.


This special location is famous for a wide range of natural attractions with right up-close sightings of unique marine life including whales, dolphins, seals and seabirds that live on the coastline all year round.


The Kaikōura township is located on the East coast of the South Island, just:

  • 2.5 hours drive from Christchurch (gateway to the South) We recommend taking The Alpine Pacific Touring Route - 450kms of spectacular scenery! Destinated to become one of the top scenic routes in the world alpinepacific.nz.
  • 2 hours from Blenheim
  • 2.5 hours from Picton (landing and departure point for the Cook Strait ferries)


Kaikōura is the perfect midway stop between these main centres!

Person overlooking water and rocks
Dolphins jumping out of ocean, with mountains in the background

Kaikōura Kayaks is within walking distance from the township where you can explore the boutique shops.


Coastal Sports is a perfect place to start. A fun outdoor shop with quality gear.


Looking for a place to stay - the choice is endless from Motels, Lodges, Holiday Parks to Backpacker accommodation, a few examples are: The White Morph, Manakau Lodge, Top 10, Peketa Beach, Alpine Pacific Holiday Park or the Albatross Backpackers.


Kaikōura (in the Māori language 'kai' means food, 'koura' means crayfish) has a large selection of eating places, and of course the local speciality is crayfish (similar to lobster).This delicacy is served at the Pier Hotel and The Kaikoura Seafood BBQ. For the ultimate fine dining experience contact Hapuku Lodge or Zephyr Restaurant.

You can also try:

  • catching your own local fresh fish or crayfish with Kaikōura Fishing Tours - or on one of our fishing kayak trips.
  • Spoilt for choice, you can view the magnificent sperm whales by air or by sea.
  • Take a swim with the Dolphins, try quad biking or explore a variety of spectaclar mountain bike trails.
  • After kayaking you can also stretch out your legs on a walk in the Seaward Ranges with Wilderness Walks or take part on a guided hunt.
  • Take a step back into Kaikōura's past and whaling history with a visit to Fyffe house, a colonial whalers cottage that was established in 1842.
  • If you enjoy walking, the rugged breathtaking Kaikōura Peninsula Walkway is a perfect three hour-return hike with outstanding views of the coastline and township.
  • Be on the lookout for seals, limestone formations and seabird colonies. The world's largest seabird, the Albatross, is often seen soaring and searching for its next meal of squid.
  • Our nationally endangered Hutton Shearwater (pakaha) also resides here on the cliff tops.
  • You can even leave a memento of your visit by making a positive contribution to our environment and supporting trees for travelers.
  • Kaikōura 's aquatic paradise provides a close up glimpse of nature at its finest.
  • The Kaikōura  i-Site Visitor Centre is a good directory and can assist with all your other accommodation and activity bookings. Please call in.


We know your time here will leave an impression that lasts a lifetime!

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